What is Different?
Genetically, we are each unique expressions. Science tells us that no two human beings are exactly alike. Even identical twins will tell you that. So if no two people are alike, then by definition, we are all different. Now, it baffles me why we spend so much time identifying any one characteristic and grouping people as “like me” and “different”. The sole purpose seems to be to create separations. With separation, we create distance. With distance, we create a buffer zone which makes us feel safe to dislike, blame and distrust the people we have separated ourselves from.
Some of my favorite online videos are those demonstrating the ability of different species to form a bond. There is an elephant which is inseparable from a dog. There is a kitten that plays and sleeps with a fawn. There are amazing combinations of wild and domestic animals living in harmony and affection.
Jesus welcomed those seen as different by the social order of his time and his faith. He engaged women and children in his ministry. He used people with different faiths and talents as noble examples in his stories. He sought out those with every infirmity. He is really only one example of unconditional love.
Perhaps the bridge across the separations we have created is just the view that each of us is unique. Instead of trying to catalog and identify which characteristics we have in common and which ones differ between ourselves and any other person or group, what if we simply celebrated the unique expression of Spirit each of us is? Isn’t that what Jesus would do?
-Reverend Joy Wyler