Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The Gospel for Misfits

Have you ever felt like a misfit? Somehow you were different from everyone else. You knew it. They knew it. And what a relief it was to finally find a group who understood you and with whom you could relate. Perhaps that's why the local church can be such a haven. After failing to fit in with the world, we become part of God's family. Our relationships are now free from misunderstanding because we're all Christians. Right?

If only.

As women, I think it's fair to say that we have a propensity to size one another up unconsciously. We compare and contrast ourselves often unintentionally. But if we're not careful to hold on to our gospel identity, misfit-itis can be stirred up in our hearts. Our differences, real and imaginary, begin to loom large, larger than our unity in Christ.

I had a bout of misfit-itis a few years ago. The women's group in my church was beginning a study on biblical womanhood, primarily marriage and motherhood. I was recently post-divorce with barely healed wounds, and we were going to discuss marriage? I had no idea how I would react emotionally, and the more inward I turned, my divorce began to rise like a barrier between me and the other married women. "They won't understand.”, “What do we really have in common?", and other assorted lies were fuel to the fire of self-pity. I was tempted to take my marbles and go home until the next study.

But the gospel isn't about misfits finding a safe niche. It's about the unfit being made fit to enter the presence of God.

Regardless of our differences, whether good or bad in our estimation, our deadness in Adam levels the playing field. This was our common lot from which there was no escape until God extended His mercy and transferred us from the kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of His Beloved Son (Col. 1: 11-14). By His doing, we are in Christ Jesus which trumps anything and everything that would attempt to divide us (1 Cor. 1:26-31; Eph. 2:13-22).

So by God's grace, I didn't take my marbles and go home. Our oneness in Christ is greater than marital status, ethnicity, age, method of schooling for your kids, and feel free to add your own entries to this list.

We aren't competitors. We're on the same team with the same goal. So let's hold fast to this truth and to one another.


  1. Excellent words of truth, sister!

  2. To totally ruin the seriousness (and wonderfulness) of this post, let me just say that now I'm going to have "We're on the Island of Misfit Toys" going through my head all day :-)

    I'm so thankful God (rather than Santa) is the answer for our wounds!

  3. Great post, I know exactly what you are saying. 'We aren't competitors', I need to remind myself of that, and not feel inferior to our dear sisters who are married. Thank you for the advice, to hold fast to this truth and to one another is excellent advice.

  4. " our deadness in Adam levels the playing field"

    I really liked that.

  5. Great phrase: "our deadness in Adam levels the playing field." Sure does.

  6. Loved it too- "our deadness in Adam levels the playing field."
    We're all so insecure and it can sure get in the way.

  7. Thanks for the encouraging comments, sisters. You too, Gregg. :)