Making friends who are different from you

Bryant Golden Blog

People love comfort.

We’ll flock to whatever makes us feel comfortable and safe. We’ll seek familiar places, foods, music, movies and people, so we don’t have to take the risk of discomfort with anything new. However, it’s this kind of behavior that leads to more gaps in communities instead of bridges. And these gaps contribute to bigger problems in society, such as racism, hatred of other religions, intolerance of LGBTQ people, or simply judging others by how they dress or talk.

In a world that feels like it’s growing increasingly small, it’s time for us to do as Paul writes in Philippians 2:2 and “agree with each other, love each other, be deep-spirited friends” (MSG). It’s time to recognize our differences and learn to come together because of them instead of hiding in separate pockets of safety.

Become a better servant

When we know and understand different types of people and communities, we are able to become better servants. We learn their needs and their drives. We can be ambassadors of Jesus by helping them in the ways we can that we would have never known about if we didn’t have a deeper connection with them.

Building bridges

When there are differences in communities, we need to build bridges, not gaps or walls. We do not all need to adapt to the same cultures or styles, but we do all need to learn to live together, and making friends who are different from you is a start. In doing so, we can celebrate what makes us different but come together on the things that are important: faith, service, community support and fellowship.

When we learn how to build bridges instead of living behind walls, we can start to see the world truly change for the better.

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