Friday, July 11, 2008

Different and glad of it

The differences in families and between families are such fun to consider. For example, between my siblings and I there are a multitude of differences;

~ Physical differences - height, hair and eye color, shoe size, etc.

~ Personality differences - happy-go-lucky, studious, curious, daring, shy, bold, talkative, quiet, helpful, etc.

~ Age differences

~ Talent differences - some are musicians, some are artists, some are good cleaners, some are good cooks, some are good singers, some are athletic...

~ Different likes and dislikes - she likes pepper, he likes salt. We love cabbage, they can't stand it. One likes classical music, another prefers country.

~ Opportunities we've had - one has been places some of us haven't. One has been pushed forward in a way the rest of us haven't. One has certain skills that will take him places the rest of us can't go.

But should these differences push us apart? I should hope not! We have much more in common than we have different:

~ The same blood. The same parents. The same name. The same cousins, aunts, and uncles.

~ The same God. The same Bible.

~ The same love of humor and laughter.

~ We live under the same roof. We share the same memories.

~ We've been told we look more alike than we look different.

~ We were all homeschooled (or are being homeschooled).

~ We were all born in the same state, and raised in the same house.

~ We all share a love for music, even though it's in different ways.

~ We all like food. :)

~ I could go on......

These are things in a family. But you can see the same thing repeated between families. Every family has its own flavor. But every family is still a family. We are different from one another, yet we are the same, too. I rejoice in the differences - they are such fun!

One family has rich olive skin with big dark eyes - another family is light-complected, with sparkling blue and green eyes. Both are beautiful. (Isn't God a master at creating beauty?)

One family focuses more on one talent than another - perhaps music instead of sports, or gardening vs. computers. What diversity of talents this adds to the world!

God has chosen for one family to be blessed with many, many children, while He has decided that another family is complete with only a few members. It's His choice.

One family has been able to enter the public arena and accomplish much for the Lord there, while another family lives in a town that isn't on the map, and ministers to the people there. In this way, both arenas are being reached.

Isn't is sad when a family decides that their flavor is the best, and they try to push it on everyone else? I need to be careful of this myself. So what if this other family isn't crazy about gardening? There are more important things in life - such as spiritual things. We agree about that. And so what if this other family doesn't run in the same social circles we do? They are accomplishing things for God where they are.

I hear much about the world's cry of "toleration for all views!" The Christians say "no, we must tell them that there is only one way!" Yes, we must. But let's not carry it too far. Inside the Christian realm, there must be room for folks to breath. If you truly believe a family is in sin because of their "flavor," that's one thing, but let's not make a list of petty rules. That would make Christian families into a bunch of tin soldiers, and hypocritical ones at that.

Wouldn't that be a tragedy?

No comments: