Sometimes it’s painfully obvious I’ll never be one of the cool kids. I’ll never have the right clothes or be in the right crowd. We all pursue fitting in and being accepted, but end up short.
But that’s okay. We’ll never fit in. Ever.
As believers, this world is not our home. We are not of this world. We’re not created to fit in.
The enemy has lied to us (especially as teenagers) by telling us that fitting in is most important, and we will never be anything if we aren’t accepted by anyone. Most teens and adults have bought into this lie.
But that doesn’t mean we have to. Instead, we need to turn to God’s Word to see what He says about fitting in.
In Christ, we’re Accepted
Let’s face it. We all face peer pressure and longing to be accepted by someone. Whether it’s by parents, friends, the opposite gender, or teachers.
But we’ll never find fulfillment there.
The only One we should be seeking to find fulfillment from, and the only one that will fulfill that desire, is God. And as His Children, we already have it because of what Christ did on the cross. “To the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved.” (Eph. 1:6)
We don’t have to seek acceptance from anything or anyone, because in Christ we have it. He has accepted us without us having to impress Him to gain it. He freely gave it to us through His grace. Isn’t that amazing?
Hated by the world
As Christ followers, we are not of this world, and are called not to imitate it and its ways. The world is filled with sin, and the devil is using it to lead many people away from the truth.
That means, if we are imitating Christ, a side effect is the world is going to not like us very much. It may even hate us.
“”If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.” (John 15:18-19)
Jesus states it plain and simple. The world will hate you. He went through that same thing as well. Every day is a constant battle. Constantly going against the flow. Following Christ, and resisting the flesh. Taking up your cross.
But take comfort in these words.
“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)
We have Christ and His Word to stand on when the going gets tough.
We must be a light
Jesus told us we are “the light of the world” (Matthew 5:14). That means we have to be different, and furthermore not fit in. We need to be Jesus to a dark and dying world.
How do you do this when you are fitting in with the world?
We can’t. It’s simply not possible. “And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.” (1 John 2:17)
That means everything the world values–fitting in, being cool, money, clothes–it’s all going to pass away.
But shining our light and doing hard things does matter. Even the small things, like mowing the lawn for an elderly neighbor, or even just a smile or text for a hurting friend, will all make a difference for eternity.