You’d figure that because we all grew up in the same house, had the same parents, and yes, had the same siblings, we’d be like clones. I’m sure all the neighbors thought the younger kids would be like the older ones. But honestly, even the older ones didn’t match up all that well.
There were eight children in my family – four girls and four boys. I’m the oldest girl, sliding in at child #3. Not only am I not like my older brothers, my sister who is only a year younger than me, went into a line of work loaded with math. I avoid math like the plague that it is.
It’s a human thing to lump people together. Labeling groups and insisting on this ‘sameness’ has been going on for eons.
The trees in the fall remind me of that. Everyone has their favorite color. Some like red, others like yellow or orange leaves…but really stands out is the uniformity of color. It has a neatness and completeness that’s easy to understand.
But life doesn’t always look like this.
We are all different. Every single one of us. If I just look at my sisters, I know that’s true. I suppose we look like we come from the same parents, but we are very diverse in interests.
There’s the math lover, a health care rules and regs specialist and a lobbyist for fair housing practices. Oh. And me of course. You can call me a: “Math avoider, with a rules and regs allergy”. The only lobby I frequent is at the cinema. But you know, all together, while we are totally different, we are totally beautiful.
“Different” is a word that gets a bad rap these days. For some reason, different has become a word that means bad, or at the very least, suspect. But as I see it, diversity is in my family, in nature and in the world to make life interesting.
We are not the same because the gifts we’ve been given are varied, and we express them as only we are able. My ability to sing will not be the same as yours. Your ability to dance is not like mine. Isn’t that beautiful?
I’m not like my talented brothers and sisters, so I hope the neighbors weren’t too disappointed. My siblings are busy using their talents in their own unique ways, the ways God gave them. It’s so interesting to talk to them, their lives are so different. They teach me that life, in all its forms, shouts and whispers individuality.
No one is like me. No one is like you. Let’s thank God for that and cherish the view. Being the same? I guess it has it’s place. But accepting and nurturing our God-given differences? That’s living our purpose.
So let’s start appreciating our differences. They show us the endless creativity of a God who says we are all “very good”.
And so we are.
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