Dear Lord Jesus, so much of life is about the desire and delights of belonging. From the day we offered our first cry as newborns, our deep longing for attention, attachment, and affection have been patently obvious. We crave to be known; we yearn to have a place; it matters that we matter.
Wanting to belong is a constant theme in all of our relationships—a God-given desire, and yet, like all of God’s good gifts, it’s been broken and distorted by sin. We expect to find in people what you alone can give us, Lord Jesus, for “the belonging of all belongings” is found only in relationship with you. We praise you today that the gospel is a calling to belong to you—to be accepted, known, and loved.
The healthiest relationships we enjoy are good gifts to be treasured, but they are only a scent and symbol of what it means to know you. And through vital relationship with you, Jesus, our most painful and disconnected relationships lose their power to define us. We can grieve our losses and bring our heart wounds to you; for no one understands like you, no one is as compassionate and kind…
We’re “called” to belong—not merely invited, but subpoenaed into an eternal life of being wanted, desired and enjoyed. You will not be denied, Lord Jesus; it almost seems too good to be true. You have set your affection upon us; there’s nothing in us that will ever surprise you; there’s nothing about us that will ever cause you pause or doubt. We believe, help our unbelief. Indeed, we “belong” to you—not owned like a new car but cherished like a new bride, for you purchased us with the price of your life. Help us, to come more fully alive to our “belongingness” and our “belovedness” in you, Lord Jesus, for your love, alone, is better than life.
So very Amen we pray in your holy and merciful name.
If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. Romans 14:8 (NIV)
I recently visited an old friend, a former professor of mine who just turned ninety. A classmate alerted me that he was very sick. She knew I would want to say good-bye.