most like me

Ever wonder why we tend to most like people who are most like us?  And that our human tendency is to repel from and even judge others, in direct proportion to how different they are.

 

I’ll be honest.  This is not an easy thing to get a handle on.

 

I guess I could make excuses like, “I didn’t grow up with a lot of cultural diversity” or “I’m not biased or bigoted—I just don’t know many people outside my socio-economic, racial, and cultural circle.”

 

But those excuses are lame.  Besides, you don’t have to live in the midst of extreme cultural diversity to experience the tendency to make judgments about people.  In fact, they don’t even have to be that different from you in the first place.

 

It’s just our nature.  Our sinful nature.

 

But what our faith in God and God’s power in us allows for, is the ability to see people the way God sees people—that is, every single one deeply valued and unconditionally loved. 

 

And so, something unique and wonderful happens when we live our lives through the lenses of God’s all-inclusive love.

 

We begin to recognize that we’re all pretty much the same on the inside, and all the disguises we wear on the outside are either the manifestations of our pain or the cloaks of our insecurities.

 

And Jesus wants to free us from them both. 

 

There is healing for our pain—which usually comes in the form of someone who loves God, loving us.  And there’s also the freedom to drop the façade and allow God’s redemptive grace to both erase our sin and fill us with the kind of life that allows us to be ourselves—or at least become the person God always meant for us to be.  If God accepts me, I need to accept me too.

 

And when a person experiences that kind of freedom, it leads to another kind of freedom.  The freedom to love others with the same kind of unconditional acceptance and impartiality that God does.

 

…no matter how different they are.

 

“Yes indeed, it is good when you obey the royal law

found in the Scriptures: Love your neighbor as yourself.”

James 2:8

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