“But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.”
1 Corinthians 12:24-26
I’ve been thinking a lot about people recently. Not in a sense of, oh yeah there are other people around me, but more of the fact that there are so many different people all around me. We live in a world where we can have many hobbies, come from different walks of life, and lived through all kinds of events. We are different people that crave community. No one likes to be alone, and no one likes to feel pushed away, yet recently in the climate of our culture we grow secluded and push others based on stupid differences. I have been wanting to write about misfits in community since I did the Misfit series a couple months back, but I couldn’t quite figure out how to say it. Then this past week, a couple of events sparked the words and God spoke to me about some things that are vital in the upcoming season for all of us.
In the past week the events of Charlottesville, VA broke my heart. What happened is a group of people decided that their lives meant more than someone else. All the chaos and hurt stemmed from that simple fact. As humans, we see this and are appalled that a person could believe this idea, but as Christians, we not only see this but also know that this is a very real view at how the enemy will try to separate us. We are called to be a body, working together to function and thrive. We are called to not be the same part of the body (I mean can you imagine how scary a body made out of eye balls would be!?), we are called to use our uniqueness in order to serve others and build the kingdom. In other words, we are called to be a community with a misfit culture. What happened in Charlottesville was wrong, plain and simple. We experienced people who have lost sight of truth, the truth that every one of us has been made in the image of God, no matter what the color of your skin looks like, you are a son and daughter of the king. Today I want to talk about misfit culture, and the truth that we have been called to love everyone, because everyone deserves to experience the power of the gospel.
Become aware of the misfit culture you are in.
This may seem simple, but it’s important to understand that the people around us are the first ones we need to reach out to. We can pray for God to speak to them all we want, but maybe God has us there for a reason to be his mouthpiece. I’m going to let that sit for a second. I realized this during morning prayer this week, I have been placed in a unique spot to speak to the people around me. For me, my local comic shop is that place. I’ve been going to Acme Comics since I was a kid, and God really told me I need to be the mouthpiece for him there. I pick up books each week, I know their names, and we can talk about the things we like. Last week I went to the midnight release of DC comics’ new book called DC Metal (Yes, I am a legit nerd, I didn’t just use “comic books” in the title of this site as a gimmick). I went with Danielle, and we had a blast. Talking to people, being excited about the book, winning posters (though I wish I had won a Batman figure), and getting to have the store call the writer of the comic on the phone. The next morning, I went to 6 am prayer and for the rest of the week that just stuck out, I need to be intentional with those relationships I have at the shop. I can be the one to show them true life and become a beacon for Christ to the comic book community of Greensboro. Why not? We should all step back and look at the misfit culture we are in, because God wants to speak through us in that place.
Dream big, because God is bigger.
This may seem daunting, but God wants to start a change in the world by having you change your misfit community. I believe that if we all start living with the great commission in mind, to reach the nations for Christ, we can prevent events like Charlottesville from happening. I believe that the change begins in our hearts, that we need to start believing that each of us are made in the image of God, so we are all worthy of love and a relationship with the one true God. I believe that as followers of Christ we need to take this to heart. It is a life or death situation, the people around us need to know the truth because I care too much about them to let them die and go to hell. It’s that serious. I may sound like I’m dreaming big, but my God is bigger. So, I’m going to keep dreaming big, because the God who formed the universe made each of us to do so much more. We need to start preaching to our friends and family, the unique community we are each in, we need to speak to the misfit cultures around us.
I’m stepping into a new season of ministry in the fall and upcoming new year, and in all of it, I never want to lose sight of the power of the misfit culture. We are all unique and have been placed around the people close to us for a reason, so why not dream big? Why not believe that God can radically change our society? Why not believe that we can end racism? Why not believe that we can end suicide and depression? Why not believe that sexual assault and rape can end? Why not believe that sex trafficking can end? Why not believe that God will do it through us? We need to live into the misfit culture around us, remembering that we are all part of the body, each necessary to make it thrive. You are a part of the body, and so is your family, neighbor, and people on the opposite side of the globe. Each of us has been made in the image of God, so let us love others and witness to our misfit culture.
You can change the world by believing the truth that God has made each of us in his image.