Sometimes people only want to be around people who are from their same cultural background.
When you ask them why, they say, it’s because these kinds of relationships are easier for them.
I am not so sure.
I think what they mean instead is that it is easier for them to develop superficial relationships with people from the same cultural background than it is to develop those same kind of superficial relationships with people from a different cultural background.
That I can buy.
But, not deep, life-transforming relationships.
I am not buying that because deep, life-transforming relationships are rarely easy regardless of what culture a person might be from.
We both might be from America.
We both might speak English.
We both might look alike.
We both might even enjoy the same things.
But actually getting to know someone deeply enough that you can speak the truth into their lives and they can speak the truth into yours, where you love them deeply like family and you are not going to give up on them, whether they are treating you well or treating you poorly, this is not easy or comfortable, no matter what culture the person might be from.
Life-changing relationships take work across the board.
And that’s part of why I get so sad when people say they don’t want to be involved in a certain church because it is filled with people who are from different backgrounds than they are and with whom they feel like they would have a difficult time relating.
It’s because I think whether they realize it or not, it’s really not about liking to go to a church where everyone is of the same culture. Instead, is mostly about wanting a church where relationships feel comfortable.
And if you are looking for relationships that are only comfortable, while they might be fun and help you feel better about yourself, they aren’t all that helpful, because they aren’t usually relationships that are all that transforming in the long run.