We all like to think we’re special and unique. And, in many ways, we truly are.
But, we’re gonna have issues when we think that our specific uniqueness is somehow superior to that of someone else.
You may not be in to Star Trek. But, whether you are not, there is a fascinating point worth noting from the Mission Statement of the United Federation of Planets, of which earth is a part (that only Captain Kirk ever seems to be able to save!). And that, in really bad paraphrase, is that no culture will force another culture to be like them – cultural differences will be, essentially, accepted as they are.
As bad as that paraphrase is, if you’re a Trekkie, let my bad paraphrase go – I’ve been to Star Trek conventions and I can even tell you what the Ship’s registration number is for either Captain Kirk or Captain Piccard!!
Which is, actually, the whole point with this Andy B video.
We’re all individuals, with unique skills and gifts. Too often we place value on particular skill sets. For example doctors or barristers or teachers tend to be overly valued in churches, when they’re just people (and would say as much themselves).
We value based on all sorts of judgements we make, but we are all of equal value and worth before God, which is why the church is never supposed to represent just one tiny part of a community – usually the wealthier and more educated.
We need to see people through God’s eyes, and comprehend how God values even those that we think the least of us. And, generally, children fall to the bottom of the pile – which is why Jesus broke all sorts of cultural rules when He was speaking with women and children.
Let’s not forget that not one of us needs Jesus more than another – we all need Him equally, because we, all of us, equally need Jesus for the opportunity to choose eternal life with God in heaven, if we’ve decided to make Jesus our Lord and Saviour. None of us is closer to heaven, or further away – we’re either going to heaven or hell, and Jesus is the only way to have a choice about that.
So, let’s not fear the fact that people are different, but embrace it. Those differences really can build a stronger church. However, let’s remember that the bible is the only way we can truly know what God sees as either good or bad, so let’s use that, rather than any other method of assigning value to people.
So, another Andy B 2 Minute Video. And I was thinking about the fact we've got some desk chairs in our home. And there's five of us. And there's these five desk chairs downstairs, at the moment, one of which I've borrowed from my younger son Peter, which is a little bit harder, and a little bit less comfortable.
But it got me thinking because I got to sit on Nathan's seat. He's a home ed desk, he's got his own desk, and his own chair. And he's got it set the way that he wants it. And I sat on it, I thought, what on earth is this seating position? So, I rearranged the chair so I could sit on it.
And this reminded me of the importance of individuality within the church. Not that we should work independently, completely different topic, but we should all be individual. Because what I was reminded of was many, many years ago, at a worship, worship, music group practice one night, somebody said, "these are the songs that God has told me to sing for this service". It didn't go down very well, because that level of arrogance is quite a shock to hear. Because here's the thing, if I'd have chosen those songs for that, for that church service, I'd have chosen a different set of songs. And somebody else there was making the point that if they'd have chosen the songs, they'd have chosen a different set of songs. But, as three individuals choosing songs for a church service, with the same bit of information, we're gonna go different ways, because we have an individual relationship with God. We are different individual people. The deal is to try and work with others. And that's kind of the point of church life.
However, it got me thinking about the chairs in our home and how, the way Nathan has his chair, I would never have my chair. And this is a great allegory of what we see in life with Christians. Because we've all got different approaches, and different ways of being comfortable with God. There's no point in looking at someone and say 'oh they watch that film, therefore they're not Christian, they're evil'. That's really missing the point, because we've all come from different places with God.
So, let's not judge. I'm not going to judge Nathan for his sitting position. I'm just going to put it back when I've finished. And that's what we should be doing. We should be respecting other people even if they have the weirdest seating position in the world. Let's still love them.
Just a thought.
Written by Andy B