Tuesday, June 14, 2011

1000th post... Thoughts on being a sojourner

I started this blog in 2008. My first post was March 16, 2008. I named my blog "Thoughts of a Sojourner." The name comes from a song titled "I Don't Belong" penned and originally recorded by Buddy Green. There is a line in the chorus "I don't belong, I'm a foreigner here, singing a sojourner's song."

To sojourn means to temporarily stay - to visit. Thus, a sojourner is a visitor. I always liked the song, and if we are a Christian, we are just visiting here. We are visitors.... sojourners.

Since I posted that first blog post, life has changed so much. At the time, I was living in Indiana, sharing an apartment with my best friend. Since then, I have moved back to Ohio, am staying with my parents in what was supposed to be a temporary arrangement, but is going on too long as I struggle to find full time work so I can have my own place.

I have dealt with - still deal with - depression.

I turned 40.

My blog has gone from being a place where I share myself, to being mostly a book review blog.

I've gone from thinking I had all of the answers, to feeling I don't have any.

I've made new friends, and seem forever distanced from other friends.

I've gone from thinking my church was right on everything, to wondering if they are wrong on more than they are right.

I started to write a book... then quit.

I lost weight...... then gained it back.

I lost myself.... and have yet to find myself.

I have gotten older, and hopefully wiser.

I've learned that I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up.

I started two more blogs, both of which I don't do much with.

And as I sit here looking at the screen as I type, listening to my favorite music.... more than ever, I feel like a sojourner.

I sometimes park in one of the visitor parking places at church when I drive my car on Sunday evenings, and have got a few comments about that. I half-jokingly told someone that I feel like a visitor, so thus I can park there, but it is true. I feel like a visitor - a sojourner - at my own church..... but where do I belong? Heaven someday? I hope so, but we all need a sense of belonging here, and I am not there.

I feel torn between two worlds. Often, I have tried to live in both, which doesn't work. Yet, I don't feel like I belong in either. Sometimes the pull is stronger for one than the other. Other times, both seem to pull equally.

I look in the mirror, and don't like the man I have become.... and wonder if I can change. I have become so jaded, so cynical. Can I be carefree and hopeful again, or did that die with the turning of 40.

There is a song that says "if I'd known then, what I know now." How true. Hindsight is truly better than foresight. As I sit here and look back over the blog posts, the days, weeks, months.... if I'd known then, what I know now... I would have done things differently. But I didn't.

One thousand posts.... three years, and almost three months later. What will my life be like at two thousand? I hope and pray that it is better and that I am truly wiser by then.

I DON'T BELONG - words by Gloria Gaither, music by Buddy Greene

It's not home
Where men sell their souls
And the taste of power is sweet
Where wrong is right
And neighbors fight
While the hungry are dyin' in the streets
Where kids are abused And women are used
And the weak are crushed by the strong
Nations gone mad
Jesus is sadAnd
 I don't belong

I don't belongAnd
 I'm going someday
Home to my own native land
I don't belong
And it seems like I hear
The sound of a "welcome home" band
I don't belong
I'm a foreigner here
Singing a sojourner's song
I've always known
This place ain't home
And I don't belong

Don't belong
But while I'm here
I'll be living like I've nothin' to lose
And while I breatheI'll
 just believe
My Lord is gonna see me through
I'll not be deceived
By earth's make-believe
I'll close my ears to her siren song
By praisin' His name, I'm not ashamed
'Cause I don't belong

Repeat Chorus

I belong To a kingdom of peace
Where only love is the law
Where children lead And captives are freed
And God becomes a baby on the straw
Where dead men live
And rich men give
Their kingdoms to buy back a song
Where sinners like me
Become royalty
And we'll all belong

Yes I belong
And I'm going someday
Home to my own native land
Where I'll belong
And it seems like I hear
The sound of a "welcome home" band
Yes, I'll belong
No foreigner there
Singin' a sojourner's song
I've always known
I'm going home
Where I belong
Yes I've always known
This place ain't home
And I don't belong