1 Corinthians 12:27
“Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.”
In the past year I’ve had the good fortune to visit two cultures foreign to my familiar Christian upbringing. In May I toured Turkey and witnessed over 3,000 years of history, including the Greco-Roman oracle at Didyma. In Istanbul I heard the mesmerizing Muslim call to prayer four times a day. Then in June I went to my nephew’s wedding to an Indian Sikh woman, and participated in the colorful ceremonies and wore a salwar kameez and then a sari at the festivities. How rich it was to be exposed to such diverse religious traditions.
But it made me wonder whether my allegiance to Christianity was warranted. How could it make sense that the Muslims were devoted to their prophet Muhammad, and that the Sikhs were devoted to their single Formless God? How could I be sure that Christ is the “right” answer if other people came up with a different answer to who their savior is?
After wrestling with these questions, I came to this answer. Instead of doubting Christ’s place in my heart, I feel energized by it. I am confident that His messages are trustworthy and truthful. I feel that He is part of a much bigger universe of knowledge and understanding that is still to be revealed to us. There’s a lot of mystery, a lot that is unknown, but that’s fine with me. Because, to paraphrase the scripture, I am a part of the body of Christ. And it’s great to belong.
Gracious God, thank you for the rich diversity you have brought to our Earth. Please give us the wisdom to appreciate and celebrate both our similarities and our differences. Amen.