Same—being one or identical though having different names, aspects, etc.
What it means to me: splendor of God’s handiwork; divine light
I grew up in a small east Texas town. When I look back on it now, it seems like a completely different world. I suppose in many ways, it was.
I was brought up learning how to be a good girl. Cross your legs. Say “Yes, Ma’am” and “Thank You”. In the middle of my first-grade year, I went to school and passed out invitations for my birthday party. I would be turning six.
On the day of my party, all my new friends came and my back yard filled up with fluffy, pastel dresses. I ran to hug each one as they arrived. I was so excited!
I was oblivious to the silence that fell over the party when I hugged the latest arrival, Mary. You see, Mary was African-American. I turned six in 1970.
My young, naïve, 6-year-old self had no idea what I was doing when I gave that hand-written invite to my friend. I lived in a bubble of protection and privilege.
Years later, I would wonder at the courage it took for her and her family to allow this day to happen. For Mary to bravely come into a part of town she had likely never seen before, amazes me. It hurts my heart to think that she trusted me that much. This is what happened, from my point of view.
My mother and grandmother asked to speak with Mary inside the house. I don’t know what was said, but my friend did not return to the party, and she never spoke to me again.
I’m not sure why this story came back to me today. Maybe it’s because this is what we need to hear. Every time I turn on the t.v. lately it seems like someone is drawing a line. “This is right. This is ugly. We have the right skin tone. We have the right religion. We are better than the rest.”
We have to stop this! We are all the same. We are all children of God. We need to take a good look at how we see each other. I want to think that the world I grew up in is a distant bit of history, but lately it seems closer than it should be.
I often meet people who live in little boxes of prejudice and I pray for them. I pray for myself that God will show me when I make judgements.
Thankfully, (thanks to God and the internet), I have friends that are of every complexion, every faith, and every lifestyle imaginable. How beautiful we are! Every difference adds to the splendor.
We are all wonderfully different, and yet we are all the same. We are all children of God; perfect, magnificent, beings of light.
Takeaway: I can’t allow my beliefs to limit my experience of the world. I don’t want to live in a little box of how I was raised, or “I believe”, just because it is the most comfortable place to be.
Judgement creates exclusion which creates suffering.
Today’s goal: Today I will notice the beauty and diversity in everyone who is not like me. I will notice the same Light of God in each one.
Affirmation to go: