searching to belong II

Missionary kids returning to their home countries often feel like they can't make real friends. No friendship seems as real or as personal or as deep or as important as the friendships they have left behind.

Before I read Joseph Myers' book 'The Search to Belong' I would have tried to solve this problem by helping improve someone's interpersonal skills. After all, that's what makes a friendship isn't it?

The language of the 'four spaces of belonging' has got me thinking though. Perhaps MKs personal skills are actually fine. They already do know how to belong in the 'personal space'. If they could just find a few people they clicked with, they'd have friends.

But how do they find these people? In both 'social space' and 'public space'. Relating in these two spaces are where MKs have most trouble. However they don't have the framework to recognise this and wrongly put their feelings of not belonging down to 'not making friends'.

My challenge for my talks next year is to help MKs recognise the different ways to belong in each space, work out where they already belong, and help them to find better and more harmonious ways of belonging in every space.

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