I came to trust Christ as a believer when I was 4 years old. I remember every detail of that moment. I know what I was doing and the comment I made to my mom that prompted her to explain salvation to me. I know where I was in the room and that she was folding laundry at the time. It’s funny how God can use the most routine moments to change someone’s life forever. Over the years, I learned that the testimony of someone who came to Christ young and never strayed far from the path is a powerful one. I would wonder though, what it would have been like to experience that moment of freedom from an adult perspective.
For a number of reasons, I was kept in bondage to the lie that I didn’t belong; not with my peer groups, my professional environment, or even with my church-centered relationships. I poured so much time and energy into trying to fit in. I was always the first to arrive at an event and the last one to leave. I was desperate to be known, to be heard, and to be valued. Trying to fit into any group, I figured out what role I could play and I played it to the best of my ability. In middle school, that meant being invisible. Bullies were everywhere, even at church. To everyone else older than me, I became a “kid sister”, a role I was born to play, being the youngest of three. If anyone needed anything, I figured out how to provide it, from a piece of gum to helping them pick out an outfit. This was especially true with “cool” crowds, even through adulthood. In my mind, if I could meet a need, they would consider me valuable. If I could do it in a way that was “matter of fact” and nonchalant, maybe – just maybe, I would be cool enough to feel part of their group.
Well, I’m done trying to be who I think people want me to be. The fact is that I am who God created me to be, and I am exactly where he’s placed me. For that reason and that reason alone, I DO belong. I DO fit in. I fit in to this grand handiwork that He calls His creation. If others cannot see that, then it’s their problem. It’s taken me close to 40 years as a child of God to understand this. My value is determined by the price God paid to redeem me. No one can take that from me. No one can say I wasn’t worth the price. God declared me worth the price! And because I am worth the price, I not only belong, but I am a vital piece of His family. And so are you.