What made me think that I belonged?
I call myself a fool as I shame myself for getting my hopes up, for building expectations, for familiarizing myself with a home. I fell in love with a family that I desperately wanted in place of my own. I fell in love with a building and an opportunity where love, encouragement, and support abounded. I anticipated and worked to become a part of it. I should have instead anticipated the moment where I stood helplessly as my structures fell apart. Then I wouldn’t be hurting so badly now.
What does it mean to have a home?
Is home where the heart is? Because my heart burns with yearning as I remember my eight weeks in Michigan last year. I miss it so much. Yet I cannot consider that my home. Not only is it 2000 miles away, but my relational roots there are weak. Is home where you find your family? Because my family is a disaster, existing in a broken web of unhealthy relationships with one another. No way can I consider my parent’s house my home. Nor can I consider the place I live my home. It is so temporary as I move around from year to year and live with different people my age. Home should not be so transitory. Then there are the families that I’ve made for myself. Their homes are welcoming, safe, and kind. But in the end, I must leave because I am not an actual member of their household. I still have to return home.
Is home where you belong?
Belonging is when you have a community in which you enjoy each other. There is a space for vulnerability and encouragement. It is a place where, not only would you be missed if you were not there, but the community would suffer a significant blow should you leave. And there is an acknowledgement, either spoken or understood, of commitment to those who belong to that community. That no matter what, where, when, or why, the community will respond to the needs of those who belong to it.
Every time I believed that I have found belonging, I was painfully reminded, or revealed to before long, that I was mistaken. No one missed me when I was gone. I was replaceable. My thoughts, my opinions, carried no weight. I did not truly belong.
Home. Less. What else are you when no place, no house, no family, no community, is yours?
I am a home-chaser. I am a belonging-chaser. I work work work to fill the gap in my heart that yearns for the security, love, and peace that comes from belonging in a family, a community, a place, a home. I have searched searched searched for a place, for a family, for a community, for a friend, who could give me the feeling of belonging that I so desperately desired. I have failed. Failed.
Failed to find my home.
“If we find ourselves with a desire that nothing in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that we were made for another world.” – C. S. Lewis
“Eternity has been etched into your heart” – Ecclesiastes 3:11
Nothing is so incredibly frustrating and yet utterly peace-giving as the gentle reminder of how wrong I am and how great my God is.
There are few things I desire in this world more than I desire for a home. A family. A sense of belonging. But this world has yet to satisfy me, and I have come to the conclusion that it never will. For if eternity was etched into my heart, then only eternity will be able to make my heart complete. And if this world refuses to satisfy me, then it is only a reminder of the kingdom come.
God knows that people can and will spend their entire lives searching for satisfaction to fill the hole that eternity left inside of our being. Yet there is nothing, not family, not experiences, not love, not relationships, that will bring fulfillment. So He gave us a great gift. It is only through the Holy Spirit, that we find a hint of that satisfaction, of the living water which quenches our thirst that we never need to yearn again. Praise the Lord that we will not be stuck in yearning forever.
Home. Less. A wanderer, belonging nowhere, to no community. A young woman, who just wants to feel complete, who knows in her heart that when she turns her soul to the Giver of all that is Good, she already is.