I Belong!

See how very much our heavenly Father loves us, for he allows us to be called his children - think of it - and we really are! But since most people don't know God, naturally they don't understand that we are his children. Yes, dear friends, we are already God's children, right now, and we can't even imagine what it is going to be like later on. But we do know this, that when he comes we will be like him, as a result of seeing him as he really is. 1 John 3:1-2 (TLB)

And since we are his children, we will share his treasures - for all God gives to his Son Jesus is now ours too. But if we are to share his glory, we must also share his suffering. Romans: 8:17 (TLB)

Nearly everyone wants to feel they belong - that they are part of a group, have a cultural identity, and are accepted. Though this need is often associated with teenage years, we all have it. Despite having the same surname, some people do not experience the joy of belonging to a family, of being part of a joint history. Many people have no one with whom they can share their joy and hope, or their sorrow and fear.

Marcos Antonio Garcia comes from Sao Paulo, Brazil. In his ministry, he meets many people who come to church alone and become part of a new family - the family of God. In Christ, we became co-heirs of the kingdom of God. The family of faith can create space for new beginnings, renewed hopes for living this life, and new hope in life eternal. It is God's wish that we become part of his family. Jesus taught this when he instructed the disciples to begin their prayer by saying, "Our Father." Jesus shared the glory of the Father with his disciples and with all of us. Everyone is welcome in the family of faith because our heavenly Father loves us.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, thank you for making us a part of your family of faith. Help us to invite others to find in you a real sense of being a family! We pray in your name, amen.

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