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The Chance for Something Greater
by Will McCabe

“You are an incredible human being, you know that?” “You are one of a kind.” “There is no one like you.”

Those phrases ordinarily are said to be uplifting. However, sometimes they can give the opposite effect. Your uniqueness can overwhelm you, your differences stick out so much so often that you feel isolated and alone. There is no one like you.

As a result of these glaring differences, you feel like you should be ashamed that you are not similar to the people around you. As if you are supposed to look, act, talk, or think like everyone else! You get the impression of silent oppression.

When dealing with these feelings, you become embarrassed about your personal beliefs and the struggles you have faced. You create paranoia and trust issues, guarding yourself so fervently and holding yourself so tightly that you fall apart under the pressure. You feel like a shack in a suburb, a weed among roses.

But you aren’t alone! As cliché as it sounds, there is Jesus! Imagine how He felt on Earth, when it seemed like He was the only one at the time who actually understood His true purpose, when He was the only person to walk blameless. He feels your pain. He knows what it’s like to be an outcast.

A great passage to look at is Mark 3:31-35 which states ‘‘Then His mother and His brothers came, and standing outside, they sent word to Him and called Him. A crowd was sitting around Him and told Him, “Look, Your mother, Your brothers, and Your sisters are outside asking for You.” He replied with “Who are My mother and My brothers?” And looking about at those who were sitting in a circle around Him, He said “Here are My mother and My brothers! Whoever does the will of God is My brother and sister and mother.”’ (HCSB version)

See, there’s a reason why we call ourselves brothers and sisters in Christ! Christianity is the only faith I know of where the Supreme Being loves people so much He calls us family. With family being such an important aspect in the ancient Middle East, the fact that He turned down His “blood” family to His spiritual family demonstrates how He will disregard ancient, earthly customs to express His higher calling: His devotion to us. He left the people with which He was supposed to identify, risking the chance of being on His own, and instead sought out a different, more meaningful family.

Not only do we have Jesus, however, but we have each other as well. Jesus says, “Whoever does the will of God is My brother and sister and mother,” indicating that we are all connected through Christ. Even though we have so many differences, we can rely on the similarity of whom we put our trust. You have a family.

One aspect of Christianity that has taken me years to understand is that the faith is not solitary, but communal. It requires working and being with other people, which sounds awful to those fellow Christians like me who are naturally introverted and have hated group activities and group projects. But you can’t have a “body” of Christ if there’s only a hand or a foot, it requires many parts to create a whole.

This community of people can show you how the entire group is different, with each person having a unique set of gifts given by God Himself. They understand the basic struggles of being a Christian in contemporary life. Some may not know your exact struggles, and they might even offend you in their failed attempt at trying to relate to you, but you can be darn sure they are genuinely concerned and want to understand. Why? Because they care and because they want to be able to help you. You are their family!

Looking back, you are already an amazing creation. Your intricate design and jagged edges make you a beautiful picture. However, you are also a puzzle piece with the capability of creating a marvelous masterpiece when fitted with other pieces! Without you, the puzzle is incomplete! You’re irreplaceable.

Looking at one of the most famous passages of Scripture, Matthew 28:16-20 is called “The Great Commission.” However, this command is not given to one disciple or one relative, but is said to the eleven disciples, a group of people which represented the first Christians. Our mission is to work together, to be together, for the good of all creation and for the glory of God. 

As a result, being a Christian is not just being able to have a fantastic relationship with our Lord, but also giving us the chance to be a part of something bigger than ourselves. The chance to touch all nations, to connect with all people, the chance for something greater.

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