I received an email encouraging me about United. In the email she wrote that she “loved my heart” and “passion for diversity.” I starred at my computer for a minute, puzzled. I was definitely thankful for her kind words but what I couldn’t wrap my head around was the ideas that, not only she but many others who have read United, now believe I have a passion for diversity.
Here’s the thing, I don’t have a passion for diversity.
I know that sounds odd coming from someone who just wrote a book about the beauty of diversity in the church, but it’s true. I once had a passion for diversity. Before I became a Christian I longed for diversity—I hoped for equal treatments and rights. But when I became a Christian my desire for diversity changed. Sure, I still longed for it but it was different. I explain this change in United. My desire was no longer for diversity for diversity’s sake.
So, if I don’t have a passion for diversity, why in the world did I write a book about diversity?
I have a passion for the gospel. It is in the gospel that we see people as made in the image of God, uniquely designed by God, and brothers and sisters in Christ. We know that every person who ever lived is made in God’s image, but for the Christian, there is a new family. My desire is that we would see each other as who we really are—brothers and sisters bought with a price.
I think that as we grab hold of what the gospel does to the discussion of race, it is then that we’ll be motivated and stirred to see church communities reflect the family of God. The family of God is diverse. My prayer is that our local bodies and our personal relationships would be too.
If you and I are going to be passionate about something, let’s be passionate about the gospel which transforms not only this conversation but each other.