I have a child who enjoys classical music & rap. For me, these contrasts don’t match up too well, but to each his own.
I also made an interesting blueberry pie a few days ago where the recipe called for goat cheese & chopped almonds / more contrasts. The pie was like a party in my mouth because of the complementing contrasts: tangy goat cheese & sweet blueberries as well as crunchy almonds & soft blueberries. These contrasts were super pleasant although not something I’d usually consider.
That’s the interesting thing with contrasts: we don’t normally put contrasts together because they often seem to compete rather than blend & complement. But alas, this is how much of following Jesus seems to play out.
Jesus applauded Peter for acknowledging Him as the Son of God but He rebuked Peter for shooting off his mouth;
Jesus demonstrates genuine love in the face of abhorrent & brutal humanity;
we are to each celebrate our unique gifts & talents while blending them into the Body of Christ for mutual benefit
Navigating contrasts for spiritual growth requires us to pay attention to the Holy Spirit & remain steady in our commitment to genuinely love 🙂
“You’re not going to North Korea are you?” I was driving my kids to school this morning & made a phone call to another ministry about some cool opportunities in North Korea. My kids immediately asked this question when I hung up & I assured them that I’m not going there this year. But it still sounds like an incredible opportunity to me!
Alas, not everyone thinks like I do & that’s altogether fantastic! Seems to me that God has uniquely created us for distinct purposes & designs. Some people are attracted to stable, predictable & familiar. Some folk have a little wanderlust in their souls. Some of us are pioneers & more than a little maverick-y. But each follower of Jesus has valid contributions to make to His kingdom!
Just because I’m different than you doesn’t make me superior or inferior any more than you are superior or inferior to me! Let’s remember that we are essential parts of one Body & we desperately need each other to fulfill our unique & divine purposes! I’m celebrating you today!!
Scientists have been working for many years to create clones – sheep, monkeys, birds, etc. When they announced that they had cloned a sheep & named her Dolly, it was considered an amazing scientific achievement.
In my thinking, the whole idea of clones is nothing less than creepy & anti-creation. It only takes a second to look around & see that God digs diversity. Everywhere, all the time there’s creative expression happening & I think that’s crazy cool. What gets me even more excited is when I think about how much God enjoys not only such creative diversity but even more how God has hardwired into creation synergy, unity & teamwork. In Jesus’ last meal with His followers, He prayed no less than 4times that His followers would walk in unity – not clones but unity:
*complementary rather than competing strengths,
*mutual building up,
*improvement through diversity more than division 🙂
Before I met my husband, I had a few boyfriends who were nice guys. Some of them were really smart, some of them were very funny, some of them were very philosophical and some had some great business skills. They were all unique and great in their own ways. When I met Reece, it was really obvious that we were both very different people, but in a really good way. Of course we had some very essential commonalities, but to this day after more than 18 years of marriage, we are still very distinct and unique individuals. One of the beauties of our relationship is how well we complement each other.
So I’ve been thinking about this idea of complementary natures as it relates to God and us as individuals. It seems to me that we are God’s complement – broken, weak, frail, dysfunctional, insecure, etc and God is our complement. Sometimes I’ve tried to find my complement in various human relationships only to be disappointed and hurt. The only true complement to our true self is the Truine God. They have designed us to be Their complement 🙂
Although my husband & I share very similar values & priorities, we are quite different. Generally, that works out well for us. Sometimes if we’re not careful, however, we can let our differences be divisive rather than complementary – like the idea of acute & obtuse in Geometry ,)
But here’s my thinking on this topic of differences in relationship: it seems to me that some of the best relationships are not between people who are clones, but rather between people who allow for differences in personality & style. I think that having relationships that tolerate differences are very important because they can help you appreciate the many different ways that God loves you & the diversity of ways in which He communicates with us. Diversity can have some rich potential 🙂