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Dear Sister, I Know You Feel Like You Don't Fit In

Dearest Sister,

I haven’t walked in your shoes, I’ve only walked in mine.

They’re covered with mud and dirt from the journey, the soles are wearing out and some of the spots are fixed with duct tape. The roads I’ve traveled led me through rain and storms, steep climbs and uncertain paths, but it’s also led me to the most beautiful places, the most extravagant heights.

You’ve entered adulthood with hopes and dreams, some you’ve had since childhood. You may have seen some of these dreams come true, but there are still others you are waiting on; a soulmate, a baby to hold, or just that sense that you belong.

As you wait, you wonder for how long, you wonder if it’s even God’s plan.

Every family gathering, someone chides you about your singleness, your biological clock, or delivers an insensitive homily about what your life “should” look like. It doesn’t take much to feel like you don’t fit in. Your thoughts turn to “if only I had ____” then I would be happy, I would belong.

Human development psychologists would astutely teach us an interesting tidbit about this time in our life, that this season of adulthood is about the conflict between intimacy and isolation.

You can feel it. The tension between them.

Your goal is to solve this dilemma, to fix what feels like is wrong, but it's so hard when some things are just plain out of your control. So often, instead of pursuing intimacy, we want to hide in isolation, retreat from the world, to avoid answering the nagging questions or feel the sharp pang of our heart.

Here’s what I want to encourage you with:

You were created by God. Your life has value and purpose. Before you were born God knew your name, He knew the number of hairs on your head, and loved you; the tone of your skin, every freckle and dimple. His image is imprinted upon you and you carry eternity in your soul. He knows who you are, what you enjoy doing, how you think and how you see the world. The life experience you’ve been given has shaped you into the woman you are now.

You’ve also been created for community. The foundation of the early church is that they gathered together, unified, serving one another and providing for each other’s needs. This is the sole purpose of our Christian life, to glorify God and enjoy Him forever. You’ve got countless strengths and amazing qualities that the world around you needs, hone in on them, sharpen them and use them for the glory of God, because your life has purpose.

How can you focus in this season, on glorifying God with your gifts, talents and abilities to serve those around you?

You are fallen. Entwined into our nature, our heart’s first inclination is toward sin. We are tethered to this old self, with its temptations and desires, it’s lure of pride and self.

While our hearts are deceitful above all things (Jer 17:9), they still ache for the pieces of life’s puzzle to fit. The greatest longings of our heart are just to fit in, to be accepted, to be cared for and loved for who we are…and for community, but this too is broken at times, as people let us down. The danger becomes that space where the things we want become the things we need in order to be happy, to live life to the fullest, when Jesus tell us that the only solution to that need is Him.

I don’t totally understand it either, I wrestle too with the longings of my own heart, but I want to trust Him and depend on Him more; this is where He wants to lead us, beckoning us like Aslan in the Last Battle, to come further up, and further in.

What do you need to surrender into the loving hands of Jesus?

You are redeemed. You might feel like you’ve failed, that you don’t measure up, that you’re not accepted because of who you are. But who gives you your identity?

Sister, if you love and follow Jesus, He tells us that we are the salt and the light of the world. He says we are forgiven, restored, and set apart. He covers us with love, grace and mercy. When our steps falter on this journey, He has not abandoned us, He is right there walking with you…even when you don’t think He’s there.

All this goodness comes from God, through the life, death and resurrection of Christ. He has set us free from our old self, and given us a new identity in Him, adopted as His children, bearing the Spirit and His aroma wherever we go.

How can you rest in your identity in Jesus today?

You will find perfect belonging in His kingdom. There is a glorious day coming when there will be no more pain and suffering, no more loneliness or isolation, no more fears of what people think. Friend, it’s a day we all long for, when Jesus comes back to reign in all His glory, wonder and perfection.

While we wait, we recognize all the ways this earthly dwelling misses the mark of heaven. But the beautiful picture is something we hold onto tightly, because it’s gonna be great.

What do most look forward to in Christ’s kingdom?

Friend, I wish I could be sitting with you over coffee to share these words. I want you to know that I love and care for you. I’m not telling you to stop dreaming or hoping, but to look to Jesus for your needs today.

You have been gifted by God, purposefully put together for His glory and for the good of others. When you step out of your doorway, send a text to encourage another, or serve with kindness, you are the very hands and feet of Christ, bringing his light into the world around you.

Take small steps toward Him today, He won’t let you down, and you will always find belonging in Him.

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