God’s heart soars with satisfaction when unity arises out of diversity. Perhaps you are unaware of the fact that God loves diversity because it reflects his infinite complexities and his amazing attributes. He did not create a uniform planet filled with identical flora, fauna, or folks. No, he loosed unimaginable diversity in myriads of ways at every level in every aspect of creation. God’s creativity is beyond imagination, off the charts, and anything but cookie cutter.
How do I know? Simply look around. Take yourself as an example. You are unlike anyone else on this planet—past, present, or future. You are unique because God is unique and he made you in his image and his likeness. He is not looking for you to think like someone else, act like someone else, or look like someone else. He made you so you would be you! God loves the differences that each of us bring to the table—the richness of our differing makeups, backgrounds, and talents.
Yet nothing excites him more than when unity rules our diversity. This is not a political thing, a religious thing, a racial thing, or even a “love” thing. This is a Holy Spirit thing! You see, only the Holy Spirit can create unity through diversity and he does it by taking our differences and blending them smoothly into one body (a.k.a. the church—that’s the community made up of people not the building in which they meet).
The Spirit’s method is similar to making a cake with a mixer. As a child, I helped my mom make cakes by operating the mixer for her. I confess my motive was a little less than noble and thoroughly selfish—I secretly coveted the opportunity to lick the cake batter off the blades once the batter was complete.
The mixer is designed to blend different ingredients into one mix. The individual and diverse flavors of the flour, sugar, vanilla extract, eggs, milk, and the other ingredients are not lost when blended together. Instead, together they produce an enhanced flavor.
But for this to happen, you need one missing element—a bowl. Without the bowl, the ingredients are spun out and away from one another in every direction. The centrifugal forces of the mixer blades throw out, but the bowl captures the blended components and maintains the unity of the diversity of whatever batter you choose to make. The mixing bowl is the key to the success of the blending process.
Likewise, God uses the mixer blades of life’s circumstances to force our differences through the mixer. He is intent on building a better batter—one that is diverse, yet unified. A body made up of differing parts that functions as a whole, instead of independently and individually. And he uses the Holy Spirit as the bowl to capture our individualism, our differences, our gifts, and our talents together until we become unified through the blending. In reality—the Holy Spirit is the unifier.
The devil wants the blender to magnify our differences and then separate us based on those differences, but the Holy Spirit desires to blend our differences—to unite our diversity into one compelling force.
Unity is not uniformity. And uniformity never celebrates our diversity.
Yet God does. He celebrates diversity’s sweet batter in unity’s mixing bowl.