I think that most people want to belong. It makes no matter who or what they belong to. As I work with adolescents, I am subject to witnessing this sense of belonging first hand. As children grow up out of childhood, they experience this need to develop their own identities as well as a sense of community. They are making connections about who they are and where they belong. Some of them question their purpose in this world. Students entering the 10th grade are called "Sophomores." This word means "wise fool." My interpretation of this (in my humble experience) has to do with understanding a little about the world and applying what they understand to the whole. If the world were a pattern continuing and repeating, then it would make sense to do this, but the world is different everywhere. This is where things get mucked up.
In thinking about it all, gangs and Greek letter societies provide a fulfillment of these psychological adolescent needs. There is an initiation, or a process of initiation. There is buy-in into the organization, there is a purpose and each member contributes to the cause. They are given a name, a new name. They have logos and symbols and signs that members happily wear to represent this organization that they belong to.
Belonging is fundamental. In the larger picture, we belong to the human race. People identify by geography or by educational institution, culture, gender, religion, political party and any other cultural identifier you can think of. We all just want to belong. Some people are walking around and they don't realize that the belonging they seek is to God.
I remember belonging to someone. I try to imagine what a lost sock or a lost show would feel like. My other half is gone. Could there be out there another half for me? I met my husband and it was unbelievable that he spoke my language. We had the same views. I want to tell you that I was so apprehensive dating him. I loved his persistence and consistency. He wanted to be my other half and he proved it. He was confidant, smart and attentive. He liked spending time with me. We merged together and then we belonged to each other. Every day I woke with the knowledge that I belonged to him. We were family. We had the same last name. At this moment, I don't know or how I could belong to someone else again. I imagine it, there are days that I can even envision it. If you were to ask me, I would recommend it. I don't think that I am in the minority with this. I definitely think that I'm in the majority.
This idea of belonging, the way that we belong with God is a big deal. I am hanging up my dating cap and I'm taking a break but this is also my advice. If you think you could like someone, I think you should think about it and go for it. Because life is shorter than you think and the chances that you think will come around again may not. Take if from me, a widow, someone who once belonged. I know first hand how short life can be and how fast time goes. Pray about it. Have courage an go for it. God bless.
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