In so many of these situations, I just don’t feel like I fit in. I obviously don’t fit in with the men’s crowd and usually can’t contribute much to their conversations. I don’t fit in with all my friends who are mothers. Even though I’ve been blessed with two conceptions, I feel like I can’t join in on conversations about pregnancy-induced food aversions or the exhaustion of early pregnancy even though I have experienced both. We don’t really fit in with any of the couples we know from church, because we are the only ones without children. This is not to say that we don’t have any friends or that people we know treat us like outcasts, just that in certain ways we can’t relate to them.
There are plenty of characters in the bible that can relate to feeling like they don’t fit in. Here are a few:
1. Hannah and all the women of the bible who experienced infertility. They had added social stigmas that are not as strong today.
2. Mary and Joseph when they were pregnant with Jesus. The movie The N.ativity really got me to think in a new way about how they were probably looked upon by other people in their community.
3. Jesus – I think of Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane and how lonely He must have felt when even His friends couldn’t keep watch. How many times I have also quietly prayed that the Lord would let this cup pass from me.
I imagine that none of the saints felt like they quite fit in with the people they interacted with. This is a part of the human experience. We all experience “feeling like an outsider” in various ways throughout life. This is just one experience that I never imagined I would be facing, and that I have had to face for longer than I would prefer. Like Jesus, I need to surrender myself to the Lord’s will, no matter where that may lead.
“For he will carry out what is appointed for me, and many such things may yet be in his mind.” Job 23:14Reflection Questions
“Have pity on me, Lord, for I am weak; heal me, Lord…” Psalm 6:3ab
“My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from me; yet, not as I will, but as you will.” Matthew 26:39b
1. In what situations have I felt like I just don’t fit in?
2. Do I try to befriend others when they may be in a situation in which they feel like they don’t fit in?
3. What models of faith could I reflect upon when feeling lonely and different from others?
Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary, that never was it knownthat anyone who fled to thy protection, implored thy help or sought thy intercession,was left unaided. Inspired by this confidence, We fly unto thee, O Virgin of virgins ourMother; to thee do we come, before thee we stand, sinful and sorrowful; O Mother of the Word Incarnate, despise not our petitions, but in thy mercy hear and answer them. Amen.