Thoughts of a messed up Christian saved by God's grace

Monday, March 14, 2016

I don't belong (edited)

I first posted this in November of 2014, and have had similar thoughts lately, so I am editing and updating it.

    I am weary of politics and this election cycle. It seems it has been more vicious and hateful than other primaries, but maybe I blissfully forgot about the others.

    We conservatives can't seem to learn from our mistakes. Time after time, we elect a nominee who is too moderate or liberal, has no backbone, and is simply the lesser of two evils... and we lose. This election we have had several decent candidates who truly seem a lot better than what we have had...and the majority of conservatives seem to be going for a candidate who makes our previous ones look like Mother Theresa. I have been frustrated, angry, concerned, and feel like I am living in an alternate universe where everything is opposite of what it should be.

  I have been praying a lot about it, reading some great articles and engaged in some interesting conversations, and have come to a realization. Maybe God brought it to me, as He has been teaching me a lot lately and speaking to me about a lot of things.

  Could it be I am too concerned about this election? Yes, I'd like to retain our freedoms and hope for a candidate who may help turn our country back towards God at least a little..... but as the old song goes, this world is not my home. I don't belong here.

    Life has been that way for me.   Ever walk into a room or some setting and feel out of place? Try feeling that for most of your life.

  I didn't belong with my male cousins. I was the youngest boy, still carrying around stuffed animals while they were showing interest in sports, and I got ragged on for it.

   I didn't belong at school. All of the other boys loved sports and were good at them. I hated them and stunk. They were tough and rough, and I was weak and the target of their bullying.

  I didn't belong at Bible College. Everyone else knew what they were doing with their lives, and seemed to have it all together spiritually. I had no clue what I was doing with my life.......still don't - and college was when I realized what I was struggling with and became a spiritual basket case.

  I don't belong at church. Normal guys my age are married and have families. I'm the odd man out. A pew warmer who slips in and out of services and often wishes I could stay home and worship God there. And all of those other people with no issues or problems.......well, at least they act like it.

   I feel out of place at work. My coworkers drink, curse,  party, meet at the bar, discuss movies I'd never want to watch, and of course discuss sports. And then there's me. I spend my week-ends in church, shopping, and reading, and I never curse.

  I don't belong with other men. I'd rather spend time in a bookstore than watch sports or sit out in the cold to shoot a deer.....and guys that like to shop are pretty rare.

   I don't even belong with those who share the same sexual desires as I do. I'm like them inside, but not outside, or politically....... and I know my Bible too well to believe that lie.

  Most days, I feel like a square peg trying to fit into a round world. A single floundering in a pool of lovers. A paperback novel in a store of Kindles and Nooks. A freak among normal people.

  And I still don't know what I want to do with my life, just that it is more than I have done so far.

   This isn't the first time I have thought like this, nor will it be the last. And as I have been thinking dire and depressing thoughts about the election and what I see as the most likely outcome - a Hillary presidency - these thoughts have been going through my mind about not belonging. I am starting to feel like I don't belong in the conservative/Republican party......if their values are going to be so opposite and contrary to the Bible; I really don't belong.

  And as I have thought about not belonging in this political party that is getting it so wrong, and was reminded that this world isn't my home......even America isn't my real home. I - and anyone serving God - don't belong here.

  But yet we tend to lose sight of that. I have been guilty of living too much for this world..... for this country. I don't serve the Republican party, and I do not have to vote for their candidate just because he is their candidate. This is my temporary home. Sure, comfort and freedoms are nice and desirable, but if our desire for those and getting the candidate we like most in as president is more important than pleasing God, than our relationship with Him..... if American politics and culture has our heart more than Jesus does; we are in serious trouble. And I don't want to be in that place. Belonging is a nice thing. Since I wrote the list of places I have not felt I belonged, I have found a few places and things that make me belong; though most of  those hold true.

  And that is OK. I belong to and with Jesus. According to Him, I belong in Heaven as long as I am faithful and serve Him. I'm not above anyone else, and am one of His weakest children who fails Him often, but He loves me and is guiding me.

  This song came to my mind when I did the original post, and has been on my mind lately. The original title of the song was "A Sojourner's Song", but it was changed to "I Don't Belong", and was the inspiration for the name of my original blog which has become my book review blog, Thoughts of a Sojourner.  Maybe not feeling like you belong isn't always a bad thing.

  And you know what? Someday, by God's grace, I am going to walk through the gates of Heaven, and I won't feel out of place. There is no marriage there, so everyone will be single. If sports exists in Heaven, and I am not sure it will, there will be thousands, maybe millions, who like me, will have no interest in it.

  I'll never walk into a crowd of people and feel out of place. I'll sit down and chat with Moses, Noah, Abraham.... and Jesus Himself....... and I'll belong. "Where sinners like me, become royalty......and we'll all belong."

I Don't Belong, written by Buddy Greene and Gloria Gaither

It’s not home where men sell their souls and the taste of power is sweet, 
Where wrong is right and neighbors fight while the hunger are dying in the street.
Where kids are abused and women are used; and the weak are crushed by the strong.
Nations gone mad, Jesus is sad and I don’t belong.

I don’t belong and I’m going someday, home to my own native land.
I don’t belong and it seems like I hear the sound of a welcome home band.
I don’t belong; I’m a foreigner here just singing a sojourner’s song.
I've always known this place ain’t home and I don’t belong

I don’t belong - But while I’m here I’ll be living like I’ve nothing to lose and while I breath I’ll just believe my Lord is going to see me through. 
I’ll not be deceived by earth’s make believe, I’ll close my ears to her siren song.
By praising His name – I’m not ashamed cause I don’t belong. 

I don’t belong and I’m going someday, home to my own native land.
I don’t belong and it seems like I hear the sound of a welcome home band.
I don’t belong; I’m a foreigner here just singing a sojourner’s song.
I've always known this place ain’t  home and I don’t belong

I belong to a kingdom of peace where only love is the law.
Where children lead and captives are freed and God becomes a baby on the straw
Where dead man live; and rich man give their kingdom to buy back a song.
Where sinners like me become royalty and we’ll all belong

Yes I belong - and I’m going someday, home to my own native land.
Where I belong and it seems like I hear the sound of a welcome home band.
Yes I belong; no foreigner there singing a sojourner’s song.
I've always known I’m going home where I belong


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