Blog Post by Abby McDonald
I let this term define me for far too long. As a teenager, I always felt on the outside of the popular crowd at school. When I became a young adult, shyness and nerves prevented me from venturing out and making new friends.
When we wear a label long enough, it becomes comfortable. It’s like a thick skin of protection and we start to like it. Even when our circumstances change and our beliefs about life and eternity are rocked, those names we give ourselves are hard to get rid of. They stick like residue, not wanting to come off.
After becoming a follower of Christ, I received new names.
Daughter. Beloved. Child of the one true God. It all sounded wonderful and good and intriguing. But I still felt like an outsider. I fought to grasp something that seemed perpetually out of my reach. If I could only grab hold of it, I would truly be free.
What whatever it was, it continued to elude me. Like a drive through the heavy fog that obscures our mountaintop in the morning, my vision was obscured. I kept striving and wanting something more.
One morning I was in the thick of a women’s Bible study, and the author was talking about anger. She asked the reader to list the things she thought she was entitled to. Her rights. And I’m not talking about our rights as citizens of a country, but the things we think we deserve because we walk this planet.
At first, I struggled through it.
“I’m not an angry person,” I reasoned. I love others.
“But do you feel loved in return?”
It was a gentle question. A nudge in my spirit. If I’d rushed ahead to the next activity, I would’ve missed it.
The longer I sat in the quietness of a Father’s compassion, the more I realized what I chased.
I ran after ways I thought I deserved to be loved by others, but wasn’t. I longed to be understood and truly seen, but felt often felt lacking in both.
Friends, we can learn others’ love language and go to endless relationship experts and counselors. But in the end, there’s only One who will love us the way we truly desire.
Our feelings will change with the weather, but his love is constant and unwavering.
He’s the One who created us. The One who knows us inside and out, who can see our thoughts before we form them.
We are never outside his love. He invites us inside, to feel the closeness of his Spirit and the breath of his adoration.
“In Love he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will” Ephesians 1:4,5 NIV
We are inside his eternal family.
We are in the depths of his unconditional love.
He drenches us with his endless, undeserved grace.
When I spend time in his presence, I realize I’m loved in ways I dare to dream about. The more I grow to know him, the more I see that I’m not an outsider.
And neither are you.
In Him we belong. In Him, we are complete.
Abby McDonald is the mom of three, a wife and writer whose hope is show readers their identity is found in Christ alone, not the noise of the world. When she’s not chasing their two boys or cuddling their newest sweet girl, you can find her drinking copious amounts of coffee while writing about her adventures on her blog. Abby would love to connect with you on her blog and her growing Facebook community.
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This encourages me today, friend. I’ve been writing a talk on God’s love and just finished, so this is like icing on the cake. Also encourages me for the ways I feel ever a foreigner, ever an outsider here in this land, no matter how gracious others are.
I took me a long time to get this through my head, now I can be on the inside looking out wondering why others don’t get it. How thick is our for or darkness, the devil blinds those that don’t believe, even if they do believe and aren’t believing enough of the right things.
And at the end of the day, being a follower of Christ automatically makes us an outsider compared to a fallen world. But within His love we find our peace and belonging.
Hai Abby my name is Phumza. I’m the mother of three kids two boys & a girl. I have suffered this for quite sometime. My intuition sometimes tell me if you are in wrong surroundings please get out. Sometimes I dream about people that I’m surrounded by, but not close to them telling me you are an outcast. To me it’s a pain knowing that I believe in God still doesn’t seats within me well cause I believe it’s not fair cause I have never created myself to be in this position. I’m having difficulties to deal with it. It brings me down hateful. And I don’t want to be unhappy because of people. I cannot even to pretend to be somebody that I’m not.
Hai Abby my name is Phumza. I’m the mother of three kids two boys & a girl. I have suffered this for quite sometime. My intuition sometimes tells me if you are in wrong surroundings please get out. Sometimes I dream about people that I’m surrounded by, but not close to them telling me you are an outcast. To me it’s a pain knowing that because I believe in God, still doesn’t seats within me very well cause I believe it’s not fair. I have never created myself to be in this position. I’m having difficulties to deal with it. It brings me down hateful. And I don’t want to be unhappy because of people. I cannot even pretend to be somebody that I’m not. Recently at the gym the class that I was attending I had to stop for a week to go. I had a dream about an instructor and my fellow attendies of the class while I was passing through them they laughed & when I asked they kept quite. When I was 2seconds away from them I had a voice saying, they are saying you are an outcast. Then I was shocked I woke up so in much pain cause I love to go to the gym. And a day after I had another dream in the gym being told by two ladies that I think I’m better than them I confronted them in the dream & they just loughed at my face. I didn’t worry about that dream I said thank you God for giving me this gift to see things far before they can hurt me. The only thing triggered my anger and confusion for being the person that Iam was the one of the ladies came looming for me in the gym wanting to train with me I said it’s fine we can train. The situation was bad in sense that we were not charting but will find her looking at me. I need help to handle this identy of myself on how to handle it. Thnx Phumza from South Africa.