Have you ever found yourself surrounded by people that just didn’t get you? This has happened to me on a number of occasions, and it is really uncomfortable. Don’t get me wrong, often these are people who are kind and gracious, but simply unable to connect with you on a real and personal level. Sometimes the reasons are obvious and difficult to overcome. As a result, it is nearly impossible to forge a meaningful relationship. Again, it isn’t because the other person is a bad person. They are just different, and different is oftentimes very difficult to overcome.
A few examples of things that can make it difficult to relate would be:
- people who come from vastly different socioeconomic background
- people who come from a nuclear family vs. a blended family
- people who grew up in an abusive situation vs. people who didn’t
- people who have battled certain addictions vs. people who haven’t
We could go on and on, but I trust that you understand the point I am making. When there are many differences, it is much more difficult to appreciate and understand where the other person is coming from and how they view the world. There are anomalies out there, but the old adage is actually quite true: birds of a feather flock together. I guess it is just part of the human condition.
I think this is the most beautiful part of Jesus coming to earth to “dwell among us.” If he hadn’t taken on full humanity, it would be so hard for us to relate to him. My guess is we would be more likely to grow cynical when people mention God, simply because he is God. If he hadn’t come to us in the person of Jesus, we could just dismiss him as distant, aloof and completely out of touch.
However, he did come to us in the person of Jesus and, according to the Scripture, he understands us. He understands what it feels like to suffer, to be grieved, to be tired, to be hungry, to be tempted, and to be human.
For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin.
— Hebrews 4:15
The gap between humanity and God was a really big one until the voice of God broke through the night from a manger in Bethlehem. Praise be to God for his willingness to join us in our mess and lift us from it by his grace.