Go ahead, get mad, huff and puff and tell me that you’re not narrow-minded.
Now, think of something that you don’t like. And think of a person (or group of people) that like that thing that you don’t like. Did God create those people? Did God create those people for a purpose? Does God love those people? Can you tell me that God didn’t give those people the ability or knowledge or skills or gifts to be able to accomplish, participate in, and succeed at that thing that you don’t like?
Ok, so that’s kind of vague. Let’s get specific (and I’ll talk about me so you don’t have to examine yourself)…
I’m a pharmacist (well, about to be one very soon). I like science, I like medicine, but I don’t like blood and guts and oozy things. Therefore I am not a nurse or doctor or surgeon or dentist. I’m a pharmacist. Thank God there is somebody out there that likes blood and guts and oozy things to be nurses and doctors and surgeons and dentists. I also don’t like dealing with death and terminal illnesses – my emotions aren’t built to handle those situations (that’s a whole ‘nother story). Therefore do not work in an ICU or nursing home or cancer center. Thank God for people who can handle those situations and choose to work on those places.
Now, it’s time to look at yourself…
Say you like art and music and drama, but you think sports are dumb and pointless. Does that mean God didn’t create the people who are famed for inventing those sports – and give them the creativity to invent such things. And does that mean that God didn’t create people to have talent and abilities to play and succeed at those sports? And does that mean God didn’t create the people who like to watch (and even make sad attempts at participating) in those sports?
Let’s flip it around…
Say you like sports, but you think art and music and drama are dumb. Does that mean God didn’t create those people and give them the skills and ability to create art or write music or plays? And does that mean God didn’t create people who have an appreciation for and find enjoyment in all types of art and music and drama? (Yes, ALL types!)
This goes for just about anything… people who wear different types of clothes or like different types of music or movies. People who have a different favorite subject than you. People who believe differently than you – religious or political or any other way.
How often do you find yourself silently (or maybe not so silently) saying the words “stupid” or “dumb” or “idiot” or “moron” or “pointless” when you encounter people with different likes and dislikes than you (and it doesn’t have to be about the person)?
Maybe you like Action movies instead of Fantasy or Sci-fi? Does that mean God didn’t give those people the imagination to create or enjoy those movies?
Maybe you like soccer instead of football?
Maybe you like country music instead of rock?
Maybe you like English instead of Math or Science?
Maybe you think it’s important to protect endangered animals, or be more Green to protect the environment, or buy local produce to support your community or eat organic foods.
How often do you try to convince God to close His mind to think like you rather than ask Him to open your mind so you can really love (and not just patronize) your neighbor as yourself?
(Disclaimer: I’m not trying to say that the decisions people make about using their God-given abilities, skills, and creativity are always right. But He did give them those things and He did give them free will to choose.)