Lisa Cotter shared her heart with us this evening as she told her testimony of finding where she belonged. She began by visiting her teen years and telling us of a “Jesus filled” Spring Break trip she took where she never quite felt like she belonged. Like many of us, she found herself asking “Where do I fit in? Do I belong here?” Upon coming home she found herself living in two separate worlds – her Friday night party world and her Sunday night youth group world. Two competing worlds which again left her asking “Where do I fit in?”
The Calling of St. Matthew
The good news…we’re not alone in this thought! In fact, struggling to fit in and know where you belong even extends to the Saints in the Bible! In Matthew 9: 9-13, we read about the Calling of St. Matthew. Matthew was a tax collector, and was widely considered a crook and a thief. However, Jesus calls Matthew His and claims him for Himself. Our Father is the God of the universe and He doesn’t just love us, He IS love, and all He wants to do is give this love to us. Jesus didn’t come for the put together and the perfect, rather, He came for the broken, the sinners, the messy; people like Matthew, people like you and me!
God desires unity with us always. When Adam and Eve’s sin separated us from Him, He set a plan into action; a plan that would reunite Him with His people so we could be with Him again. A plan to win His people back. A plan that culminated with Jesus on the cross. By Christ’s death, the power of sin was no more, and we were once again united with Him. This is truth, but if you don’t believe it, if it’s just a “story”, then none of it matters. You won’t feel like you belong until you can feel it and know it in the depths of your heart. Know that God loves you and He wants to be with you!
You Belong Here
Lisa encouraged us to picture ourselves in the Calling of St. Matthew story. What worlds are you living in? Which world sparks joy? Which world do you belong in? The world of fear, chaos, guilt, shame and sin? Or the world of love, support and forgiveness? As a teen, Lisa had to let Jesus into her two worlds so He could transform them. She let Him in so He could take His love from shallow depths to one as deep as the ocean. For the first time she committed to ‘really follow’ Him, not ‘fake follow’. For the first time she knew where she belonged. If you find yourself asking “Where do I fit in?” know this; if there is anywhere you belong, it’s here. Here, where you are surrounded by your big, crazy, sometimes messy, Catholic family. Welcome Home! We’re glad you’re here!
Lisa left us with a challenge for the weekend; she challenged us to hold our relationships, friendships, sins, addictions, feelings and hurts up to the Lord and ask ourselves, ‘Is this where I belong? Is this where God wants me to be? Does He want better?’
The Holy Spirit holds all of the answers to these questions. He wants to work in your life in new and radical ways this weekend. Just ask. Invite Him to tap on your heart in a new way. Holy Spirit, come.