Friday, July 22, 2016


All week, I've been talking about diversity in terms of the sham definition that passes for it in today's contemporary dialogue. We're spending a great deal of our time dividing ourselves into certain groups by certain characteristics and calling ourselves "diverse" only by the very things that make us most like a bunch of other people. 

Again, I say that we are painting our diversity in too broad of strokes to be meaningful at all. And what's more important than that, in defining ourselves in this way, we are missing the true miracle of who we are, individually, as image bearers of our incredible God.

The truth is that the human species has more diversity than any other species that we have studied. Look around. You are not, in fact, exactly like anyone else. You can find a thousand different things that make you different from literally anyone else. This is what we ought to be focused on.

We ought to be focused on that thing that makes you most in the image of God: your heart, which is unlike any other heart in the world. Your eyes, which see the world in a way that no one else does...or can. Your ears, which hear a whisper that is only meant for you.

Look around! Out of trillions upon trillions of possibilities, there is you. Now that's diversity.

It's what gives us people who can stand in the storms, those who can dance in the rain, and those who are gifted in organizing the indoor games that help us forget that it's raining at all. It's what gives us those who aren't afraid to walk into danger and those who can see danger coming a mile away, in plenty of time to divert and take a new course. It's what gives us those who believe in themselves and those who need someone to believe in them. It's what gives us all a unique way to believe in God.

It's what gives us some who are rescuers and some who are rescued. It's what gives us both the beloved and the lovers of our world. It's what gives us those who teach, those who learn, those who lecture, those who labor, those who like, those who love, those who long for something more, better, greater still. 

It's what gives us those who put food on the table and those who wait for an invitation. It's what gives us those with clean hands and those with calloused hands. It's what gives us those who turn the other cheek and those who refuse to turn away from trouble. It's what gives us those who speak truth and those who speak grace and those who speak nothing at all but whose presence speaks something unspeakable. 

It's what gives us those who see clearly what's manifest right in front of them and those who see just as clearly the things that are by definition unseen. It's what gives us those with ears to hear and those who truly listen. It's what gives us those who are anointed and those who do the anointing and those who can't figure out what anointed even means, but holiness drips from their lives like honey nonetheless. 

It's this diversity that we're all a part of. It's this that makes us who we are. Not race. Not sexuality. Not sex or gender. Not economics. Not politics. Not any of this stuff that divides us only into two or three distinct groups, into segments and sectors that we classify as "different" even though they are painfully the same. 

It's this diversity that calls forth the image of God from us. It's this diversity from which we must engage our world if we are to make any impact on it at all. It's this diversity from which we must both ask and answer the greatest questions of our time. Not because we are "this" and not "that," but because we are distinctly "this." Out of the trillions of possibilities, this is who I am. This is who you are. That's no accident. It hasn't happened by chance. 

And it's on this holy ground that we ought to meet each other. For it is here that something truly sacred is happening.

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