This week a Facebook friend shared some photographs taken in Upper Antelope Canyon, which is an amazing petrified sand dune in Page, Arizona. Wind and water have combined over time to erode holes, passages and crevices into the sandstone, creating formations of breathtaking beauty and complexity.
I was struck by the colors. Sand in a particular location is by no means uniform, but it is basically all the same color. It’s almost white here in the Pensacola, Florida, area, almost black in some volcanic areas in the Pacific, and in most other areas, including Upper Antelope Canyon, it’s … well, sand colored. You know what I mean.
It doesn’t look that way in photographs. Tricks of light and shadow turn the sand into tones all across the spectrum. I see orange, yellow, and various shades of brown — that’s not too surprising. But I also see reds, purples, grays, even white. In reality, though, it’s all the same color.
The church is like that, I think. We are all made in His image (Genesis 1:27). God takes us all out of the same ocean of sin and deposits us in the same place. Because of less-than-perfect conditions and perspectives, we appear different. Some might be preferable to one observer, others to different ones. But that is a perception problem, not a Creator problem.
We are Christians. That is all.
Efforts to subdivide us into socio-economic, cultural and ethnicgroups is a denial of our basic nature. That sort of class system is for people of carnal values. Not us. Once we clothe ourselves with Jesus, He becomes our defining characteristic (Galatians 3:27-28).