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United: A Book Discussion (Chapter 4 – God’s Provision of Diversity)

Jasmine Holmes

In Chapter 4 of United, Trillia talks about how the Lord answered her prayers for relationships  in an unexpected way. When she felt isolated in her predominately white church, God saw fit to send her two new friends; together, three three of them represented three different ethnicities, backgrounds, and experiences.

These friendships were not a reflection of androgyny, but a reflection of the beautiful diversity that exists in the Body of Christ. When we engage in meaningful relationships with Christians of different backgrounds, we don’t leave our own differences at the door; we bring them to the table and rejoice in the creativity of the Father.

This chapter also provides some helpful conversation about the concept of race. In essence, we are all one race, the human race, and represent myriad ethnicities. Our differences do not separate us from the broader context of humankind, nor do they effect our status in the Kingdom. We are all created in God’s image, and all of the diversity in humankind is a reflection of the fact that there isn’t one ethnic group that can fully show forth God’s glory; all of us were meant to.

So we rejoice in our individuality and we rejoice in our unity. We strive to show love across the superficial barriers that we erect between our brothers and sisters in Christ. And, when we do, we find that the commonality that binds us in him is more than enough to create lasting bonds.

This week’s questions come from Trillia’s study guide to United:

  1. Could the pursuit of diversity be as simple as branching out in your friendships? How could you begin to include others who are not like you in your life?
  2.  What is imago dei and how does it affect race?
  3. Race is a complex topic but one that the Bible doesn’t shy away from. How does studying what the Bible says about race assist our discussion about the topic? What have you learned from scripture that you did not know?
  4. Sin corrupts and divides and, because we continue to wrestle with sin, our differences can be the catalyst for that divide. How have you seen this in your own life?

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