In Search of My Tribe

Social media guru, Seth Godwin says everyone of us belongs to a tribe or we need to belong to one.  We belong to a smaller group of people who are like us and that there is a sense of belonging.  It’s a part of our survival mechanism to belong to something bigger than ourselves. No man is an island, right?  Islands brought together form an continent. Am I an island or a part of a continent. But where  and to whom do I belong? That’s the existential question that philosophers pose and poets lament about. Yet, it’s a feeling and longing as sure as love or death.  Should I belong to a specific church? Should I belong to a certain denomination?  Is my small group a safe place for me to belong? Let’s look deeper for a moment.  Where are my people and who are they anyway?  Can I find someone like me out here that thinks, smells, acts and believes the way I do?  Does belonging  mean we are the same—act the same—do the same things—look the same way? Stirring up the pot of belonging is scraping the bottom of the pot which reveals the often burned and hard to talk about subject of community that we must deal with.  Community is the place where we most belong. Experiencing community is a hint of discovering your tribe. If you’re in community, then you may know what I’m talking about by being in a tribe. It’s like my group of people I met with on Sunday mornings at my church. In many ways, these wonderful people are like my tribe—sort of. We are missed when we are not there. At least they tell me that.  We celebrate birthdays, anniversaries and we bake pies when one of our parents die. It’s a way of caring. But in the end, at least for me, I am finding myself longing for some tribe that we might go deeper. We might talk about our longings and fears; our failures and be prayed over when we confess our sins. We would love and be loved; touch and be touched, care and be cared for and celebrate and be celebrated. We would pray and be prayed for. We would matter. Most of us are in the end, looking for a group where we matter. It’s the greatest obstacle to the mega-church. It’s call the “herd instinct.”  It’s where we get in and get out without being really noticed; without being really significant; without being really more than a cow herded onto a cattle car. I know that feeling. Don’t you? My tribe and the lack of a tribe makes me feel secure and at the same time lonesome for something else. I want more than Sunday School. I want a tribe—a group of men and women who matter and to whom I matter. Do you understand what I’m talking about?  Leave your comments and let’s chat…let’s explore this important subject.