Culture lessons

I’ve had the massive privilege of getting to travel alot in my life & this privilege means that I’ve experienced a really WIDE ARRAY of cultures & diversity. It’s interesting that what we Americans get uptight about for culturally acceptable isn’t the same for many other cultures. For example, it’s TOTALLY uncool to pick your teeth in China, but not a big deal to pick your nose – interesting differences.
Here’s my point, the true culture of Christianity according to John 13:35 is genuine love. As a follower of Jesus, my native culture is genuine love – water to my gills, air to my lungs, light to my eyes & touch in my heart. I want to live in genuine love, bringing my native culture throughout each day & interaction.

celebrating differences

 My husband & I are discussing the different kinds of gifts that our kids want for Christmas:  the boys want air hogs (a hovering helicopter that can shoot missiles, or something like that) & American Girl doll stuff.  He’s commenting that the American Girl doll stuff is lame & I can just envision my boys remote controlling a helicopter to shoot missiles at me while I cook – not so much :/

Here are some great things about these differences:

  • they add variety – if the world were all dolls or hovering helicopters, we’d complain about the monotony
  • growing opportunities – it seems to me that we often grow the most when things are very different from our expectations & norms
  • new perspectives & deeper understanding – when I don’t dismiss differences, I open the door to understand someone else more deeply
  • genuine love – not because someone is like us, but rather because we want to see them enjoy what is not harmful & what they like
  • respect – appreciating diversity allows us to show respect & helps foster relationships

Vive’ la difference! 🙂

differences are valuable

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 🙂