Feeling Like an Outcast in God’s Family


You know that feeling you get, whether it is a big event, a meeting, or even just a conversation within a small group, when you suddenly think:

“What am I doing here? I don’t really belong. I don’t quite fit it.”

When I find myself in those situations, it feels a little awkward and uncomfortable. It is an unsettling feeling, which usually leads me to excuse myself and head for the door.

Now, let me ask you, have you ever felt that way as a member of God’s family? I know that I have! There are many times I observed other Christians living out their faith or attended church services, and though I desired to have that peace and blessed assurance, I never thought I would ever find it.

I would attend Mass with my mom infrequently. I would say all the things I had been taught to say, I would kneel, make the sign of the cross, and participate – but I felt like an outcast. I mean, I was there, but I didn’t feel like I really belonged – or that I was worthy to belong.

I even tried going to other churches to see how that “felt” but something was always a little (sometimes a lot) off for me. However, I did keep trying to find my place in God’s family. I admit that I didn’t try too hard, but I was seeking.

Once I finally realized that God wanted me back in the Catholic Church, there was no where else to go. Suddenly, I had an insatiable desire to know all about His Church, our Lord Jesus Christ, the Blessed Mother, the saints, and the Bible. It is a fire that continues to burn inside of me today and I pray it will continue for the rest of my life!

What brought me back?

Not what, it was who! It was Jesus pursuing me with His mercy! He was relentless, compassionate, and loving. Every time I said,

Lord Jesus, I am not worthy. I have committed sins too terrible to truly be forgiven. I ignored every blessing you put before me to pursue what I wanted. I chased after all the things I thought would make me happy, complete, and adored. Instead, this pursuit has left me broken, anxious, and despising the person I have become. I can no longer live this way but I am still not worthy to be in your family. Lord, you see me. You know my sins. You know my heart. I think we can now both agree that I am not worthy.

But he did not agree! He did not agree with me at all.

I had a lot of work to do. But when I finally stopped running from him, because I was too ashamed to face him, I ran to Him and my life has never been the same. Once I realized and accepted that I had not ruined God’s plans for my life, everything changed. Yes, I chose a path that was a lot bumpier, and far more perilous, than it could have been if I had made better choices. However, the Lord showered me with graces that have made me the person I am today.

He has used those trials and suffering to bring about so much good in my life and he will surely do the same for you. If you are feeling like an outcast in God’s family, take heart! You are so loved by a Heavenly Father who knit you together in your mother’s womb and He knows you inside and out. He wants to shower you with His grace and mercy.


Journal idea: Are there times in your life when you felt like an outcast in God’s family? What changed that feeling for you? Who did God place in your life to plant seeds? How did He guide you back and show you how forgiving and merciful He truly is?


4 Comments Add yours

  1. This was a beautiful post! I related to it a lot. One time specifically where i felt like an outcast in God’s family, was in my old parish. I (sadly) had a miscarriage almost 3 years ago, and since I miscarried at a Catholic hospital, they were required to call my priest and ask if they would do some kind of memorial service for the baby. Instead of being welcomed by that priest and comforted, I was told that because I wasn’t married, in his eyes the baby was invalid, and he would not do anything for her. MY baby was invalid? No baby is invalid! After that, I kept silent for nearly 8 months, because I was hurting so badly. Finally, I started sharing with some of my closest friends, and felt comfortable enough to share openly during conversations with other parishioners……but they’d make me feel alientated too. saying “well, we don’t see a wedding ring, so how could you miscarry? That means you sinned, and had sex before marriage.” They looked at me differently, and I could feel that difference in the air. I have since moved on to a new parish, where I feel much more welcomed and included, not only by the people and the priest, but I feel closer to my faith at this particular parish than I did at the other one.


    1. Christie says:

      Wow! First of all, Mandy, I am so sorry for your loss and also for the way you were treated by your parish priest and others. You are right, regardless of how a baby comes to be – no baby, ANY baby is invalid. I don’t know why he would have said that or used those terms. After all, as Catholics we know that: “The Church teaches that every spiritual soul is created immediately by God – it is not “produced” by the parents – and also that it is immortal: it does not perish when it separates from the body at death, and it will be reunited with the body at the final Resurrection. ” (CCC 366) No matter how your baby came to be, no matter how brief her life, she matters to you as her mother and to God who created her immortal soul. I am so glad to hear that you have found a wonderful parish where you have been welcomed and included! Such a blessing. Thank you so much for the kind words, sharing your experience, and taking time to comment.


  2. Reblogged this on By the Mighty Mumford and commented:

    Liked by 1 person

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