No musical chairs

One of the only contests I've ever won was when I was seven years old. It was at a Christmas program at a department store in Washington, D.C. The game was musical chairs. The point of the game is that each round eliminates one person, because in each round a chair is removed. There will never be enough chairs for everyone. At the end of the game, I won a giant candy cane. I got to sit on the chair alone on the stage. And although I was glad I won, I also felt foolish all by myself on the stage.

Sometimes life can seem like a game of musical chairs—and it isn't much fun to be the one who feels left out. Also, just as I felt awkward all alone on that stage with my prized candy cane, it can feel uncomfortable to be the one who is doing the excluding.

This week's issue tackles some of the reasons that people feel left out of life's activities—whether it's because everyone else seems to be svelte and stylish while we feel frumpy. Or because all the world seems happily coupled, and we're dining alone. Or a physical difference makes us feel separate. The reasons for feeling excluded are as varied as a teenager's list of insecurities. But as Ron Ballard notes in this week's lead article, each of us enjoys the divine right of inclusion. Because God loves each of us equally and infinitely—in all our diversity and originality.

Enjoy 1 free Sentinel article or audio program each month, including content from 1898 to today.

October 13, 2003

We'd love to hear from you!

Easily submit your testimonies, articles, and poems online.