I can’t help but wonder if 21st century Christians have been sold a lie.
Over the years countless passionate speakers have all had their turn to remind me that I was created for a purpose. God had something special for me to do. Called. Chosen. For something, if I could figure out what.
For a long time I believed what they said and in many ways I thought I’d found it (my purpose that is), then I thought I’d missed it and then I thought found it again… It was on this roller coaster that I discovered:
WHO I am becoming as a follower of Jesus, is far more important than WHERE I am going, or WHAT I am doing.
Our thirst for purpose; to DO something significant; can distract us from the deep satisfaction that comes from the significance of BEING. Being a son or daughter of God. Being in relationship with God. Being changed, being kind, being generous, just being ok with being.
When we are focussed on our DOING we take our BEING for granted.
Anyway, this is no Christian philosophical rant, it is a reflection of some personal pondering.
Like all pondering it began with a feeling.
Lately I’ve felt like a vagabond.
There I put it out there.
Yes it’s a little strange, but it’s entirely true.
I feel like a vagabond. Not naturally speaking of course. I have a home, a job, a family, a place to ‘fit’ in society but if I’m honest, it’s a spiritual vagabond feeling that I am trying to shake.
For those unfamiliar with the term vagabond it means to wander aimlessly, without a home or direction- purposeless perhaps.
I considered that the feeling came from season transition- having kids, changing jobs, moving home, change at church…perhaps? But nothing quite sat right. I did more, I did less, I did different, but whatever I tried I could not shake the feeling.
Have you ever felt like you don’t belong?
Have you ever entertained those vagabond feels?
Like a foreigner in your own country?
Ever turned up to school in your uniform on free dress day?
Or found yourself in a crowded room yet felt so feel alone.
Sometimes we can walk into normal everyday situations in our lives, things we do regularly yet for some reason everything can feel different. Same job, same church, same circle of friends yet one day you turn up and feel vagabondish.
What am I doing here? What’s the point? Where am my heading? What’s my purpose? What am I doing with my life?!
Have you ever felt like that? If not, don’t worry your time will come and when it does maybe you will remember these words.
See, I was kind of ashamed of my vagabond feelings. I shared them with my husband, toyed with them in a song and generally do what I do best with feelings- feel them, explored them, wrote about them and wondered that good ol’ fashioned question- WHY?
After a few months, I stumbled across a verse about vagabonds in my devotions.
The verse reads…
“A fugitive and a vagabond you shall be on the earth.” (Gen 4:12 NKJV)
It was part of a curse that God put on Cain after he killed his brother Abel. (Full context is in the link above.) Cain then went out from the presence of the Lord and dwelt in the land of Nod (meaning wandering).
Adam and Eve and their descendants made decisions that altered humanity forever.
Feelings of aimless wandering, (vagabond feels) are a result of the fall. I wasn’t doing anything ‘wrong,’ I wasn’t a misfit, I wasn’t waiting for something to ‘fall into place,’ I was simply human living in a fallen world.
Thankfully Jesus changed it all.
Momentarily I had succumbed to the lie, entertained its whispers in the recesses of my mind. Despite knowing the truth- that my purpose first and foremost is to be in relationship with God, I still searched for purpose in someTHING not someONE.
The best way to silence the enemy is to speak God’s truth out louder and clearer than the enemy’s distortion.
When I hear the muffled lie: ‘You don’t fit, where are you heading?’
I will respond with conviction:
“I am a citizen of heaven.” (Phil 3:20).
“My home is in Jesus” (Isaiah 66)
When I walk and pray, I feel close to Jesus. I feel home, as though my earthly lungs catch a breath of heaven. When I write, when I consider His Word and His works I feel at home, I feel close.
We need to find out where we feel at home and stay close.
Where do you feel at home? Where is it that you feel close?
This vagabond feeling is a reminder that earth is but a vapour.