Do you remember the the song from Sesame Street that began with these lyrics…?
[pullquote position="right"]One of these things is not like the other One of these things just doesn’t belong…[/pullquote]
That was the song that followed me around, and haunted me during my years growing up. It wasn’t that I had some physical or mental handicap. Actually, I excelled in school, and music, and sports. My achievements weren’t the issue. I never felt that I belonged in my family. I can remember seriously wondering if I had been adopted. I just didn’t fit into my own family.
The issue of not belonging didn’t stop at home. I also felt out of place almost everywhere else. I just carried this ache around with me. It’s not that I didn’t have friends. I had great friends with great families, and I always wanted to belong to those families, not mine. I wanted the embrace of those Mom’s and Dad’s.
I never really saw the problem and why I felt like I didn’t belong in my own family until much later. My parents provided what I needed to live, I had all of the stuff. I knew that I was headed to any college I wanted to attend, unless it was closer than 6 hours away. My parents philosophy was that I needed to be independent. I was not to need anything from anyone. I wasn’t supposed to belong.
My ache came from the fact that I NEEDED to belong. I needed a hug. I needed some occasional affirmation. I would have enjoyed some discipline. All of these would have said to my aching heart-YOU BELONG!
All of this sounds really sad, and it is, except that the ache in my heart kept me seeking something to fill it-Enter Jesus Christ. When I found Christ, I found who I belonged to. I did have a family and I was adopted, but not by my parents, by the King of the Universe. My heart doesn’t ache like it used to, and my theme song is no longer…
One of these things is not like the other
One of these things just doesn’t belong…
I do belong!