On belonging and blessing

Knowing we belong, even where we belong, is one of the most powerful ways we experience meaning in our lives.

Deep meaning doesn’t live in the abstract. It isn’t a title or what we own. It is relational.

That doesn’t only have to be at the intimate, interpersonal level. Though I suspect that as we move from the global to the local, then the sense of belonging becomes more tangible and visceral.

During the week I have experienced several moments of deep belonging that have surprised and delighted me.

Being part of the Right Company – a gathering of like-minded people who want to make a difference through their work. Not only by what they do but how they do it. It’s a world-wide network led by Bernadette Jiwa and Mark Dyck.

Expressions of practical friendship and care that pop up all over the place. Flowing around us, as Steve and I try to find a way forward through the challenges of running our 40-acre valley in here in South West Wales. And the rest…

Being part of a church family at Linden in West Cross and Mumbles that is rich with diversity and sensitivity. Who share a perspective outside of themselves to those on the margins. Whether in prison, on the streets, those seeking sanctuary as asylum seekers and refugees, or those with mental frailty. And liberating life with abundant creativity.

And it’s actually that – looking to bless – which is such a crucial dimension of belonging.

Belonging and blessing

If our sense of belonging is only inward – us and our agenda – then ‘belonging’ becomes shallow. The relational ligaments are uni-directional and they atrophy.

Real belonging awakens our sense of being blessed and the privilege of being a blessing. And it grows in ways we cannot do for ourselves.

It’s an ever-expanding circular economy. Whether at the macro or micro level.

Pause. Breathe. Reflect. Smile…

Perhaps the last word should go to John O’Donohue:

“We have no idea of the effect we actually have on each other. This is where blessing can achieve so much. Blessing as powerful and positive intention can transform situations and people. The force of blessing must be even more powerful when we consider how the intention of blessing corresponds with the deepest desire of reality for creativity, healing and wholesomeness. Blessing has pure agency because it animates on the deepest threshold between being and becoming; it mines the territories of memory to awaken and draw forth possibilities we cannot even begin to imagine!”

John O’Donohue, Benedictus – a Book of Blessings, Bantam Press 2007

This week

…has followed the trail of breadcrumbs to today – unintentional, but providentially – and I have been blessed in the writing. Thank you for giving me the reason to do this – Sue x