I don’t know about you, but I love the sense of belonging I get from being a Christian: the very label suggests that we belong to Him! I’m challenged not to take for granted the sense of peace and stability we gain from the identity Jesus gives us. I can think of many ways in which God gives to us various wonderful expressions of attachment: family, friends, church fellowship, as well as that amazing assurance that we have when we are ‘in Christ’. Yet we so often park there and enjoy the benefits. I believe that the blessings of God are there to be appreciated, but they really ‘spark’ when they are passed on!
Blessing people out of our usual circle seldom happens by chance; quite often it takes a courageous move to go out of our way and speak or act. Maybe we need a fresh determination to look beyond our usual ‘eye line’.
I read a wonderful story last week, of a four year old girl named Norah from Georgia USA, who seemed ‘magnetically drawn’ to an elderly man while out food shopping with her mother. As they passed, the little girl waved and she said, ‘Hi, old person, it’s my birfday today.’ The two chatted together for a short while and went on their separate ways. The mother was so proud that she posted it on Facebook, saying the whole thing was ‘super adorable’. Norah’s mum consequently received a message from someone who knew that the old man had been recently widowed and he’d expressed how deeply moved he had been by Norah’s kindness.
The happy ending to this heart-warming episode is that Norah’s family and their new friend are now in regular contact. Perhaps we need to go out of our way to be a little more inclusive of those who seem to be on the margins. It’s easy to spend our time in a tight circle of people who share our blood ties or with whom we have lots in common, but we miss out if we don’t look beyond and seek to draw in new people, people who need us to extend that sense of belonging that we enjoy. Perhaps part of our being ‘in Christ’ needs to incorporate a fresh move to be more inclusive of others.