Longing to Belong
Discovering the Joy of Acceptance
by Shawna Marie Bryant
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Become fully aware that you are unconditionally loved and accepted.
From a young age, we all learn that cruel words can wound, but Longing to Belong will show you how Scripture can heal your heart. Join Shawna as she turns to Psalm 139 and reveals seven life-giving affirmations that everyone needs:
God knows me.
He is always with me.
I am not invisible.
I am wonderfully made.
God’s countless thoughts are for me.
I have enemies, but . . .
I can walk in victory!
Writing with honesty and transparency, Shawna will show you how to handle your hurts and grasp the keys to freedom when others have rejected you. Walk with her through the Bible and see anew that your Creator is not a harsh critic or a taskmaster to be feared. Instead, learn to claim your rightful place as accepted by God and live in joy.
“As one who has longed to belong, I have looked for books that address the ever-present neediness in my heart. Thankfully, Shawna Marie Bryant’s biblical scholarship, encouragement, and empathy offers a Jesus-honoring path toward wholeness. Bryant has taken the journey before us. She loves Jesus. And she loves you, her reader. Whether you study this alone or with a group of friends, I’m convinced you’ll close the book loved, changed, and inspired.”
—Mary DeMuth, author of Healing Every Day
“Longing to Belong comes from such a personal place in Shawna. She is a shining example of someone who decided the pain of rejection was not going to keep her down and defeated. By embracing the truths found in Psalm 139, Shawna gives the reader a transformational guide to freedom.”
—Joni Oquist, Women’s Pastor at Peoples Church, Fresno, California
“Shawna is someone I have come to know as both a gifted communicator and a person who strives to hear and be led by the Holy Spirit. I think highly not only of her talents and gifts but also of her and her family.”
—Dale Oquist, Lead Pastor at Peoples Church, Fresno, California
“Longing to Belong is a beautiful, life-giving stroll through the powerful, nurturing, and life-transforming Psalm 139.”
—Pam Farrel, Codirector of love-wise.com and author of the bestseller Men Are Like Waffles, Women Are Like Spaghetti
“God has given Shawna Marie Bryant a wonderful gift in teaching, and has called her to the ministry of teaching the Word of God to women. Shawna needs to be doing this. This is what she was created to do!”
—David Jeremiah, Founder and President of Turning Point Ministries, and Senior Pastor of Shadow Mountain Community Church
“As pastor to a United States president, my dad, Rev. Michael Wenning, was considered a somebody. Somebodies get to endorse powerful books like this, filled with wisdom for broken hearts. As a nobody-knows-who, my opinion (and a few bucks) can buy you coffee! But maybe you need to hear from ordinary me, because after reading this book you will know beyond a shadow of a doubt how deeply, how widely, God adores you. And the best part? That makes you a pretty big somebody too!”
—Andi Wenning Bull, pastor, Bible teacher, and women’s mentor
“Shawna Marie Bryant guides with grace and fresh insight. Her wisdoms are breaths of fresh air. Her continual direction back to the one who sets us apart and keeps us in his belonging points readers to the source of everything they need. Shawna’s book is a timely and important work. I highly recommend Longing to Belong.”
—Jami Amerine, author of Sacred Ground, Sticky Floors
“In Longing to Belong, Shawna Marie Bryant embraces readers as good friends. She captures the pain of rejection and the certainty of hope. Through relatable, personal experiences and biblical stories, Shawna takes you step-by-step to the truth of acceptance. This is a resource you will refer to time and again.”
—Penelope Childers, coauthor of A Cry of the Heart
“With honesty and vulnerability, Shawna Marie Bryant shares her journey of discovery. You’ll join the ‘I’m Special Sisterhood’ and walk the path of acceptance, unlocking life-changing doors. Shawna’s insightful book includes examples of biblical characters, and helps you see yourself through God’s eyes. A must-read, especially if you are feeling ‘less than,’ because God considers you his masterpiece. Great for individual or group study.”
—Barb Boswell, author of Every Time I Turn Around, God Whispers in My Ear!
“Longing to Belong is a fascinating account of how deeply God loves and cares for us. As you read this book, you will see yourself the way God sees you. Shawna Marie Bryant masterfully conveys the heart of our heavenly father while walking you through one of the most powerful Psalms ever written. I personally realized that when I embrace God’s acceptance of me, self-acceptance becomes easier.”
—Ercell B. Charles, President of Mentor Performance Systems, and Vice President of Customer Transformation at Dale Carnegie & Associates
“Life is difficult and sometimes overwhelming, but a practical, sincere, powerful book like this one by Shawna Marie Bryant brings hope. Shawna invites you to join her in a sisterhood of learning and leaning into the Word of God together, using one of my favorite Psalms. Her guide to journaling through life’s ups and downs is something I will treasure, use in my own life, and share with others.”
—Penny Murray, Director of Women’s Ministry at NorthPark Community Church, Fresno, California