It’s Hard to Be a Minority
May I confess that I dislike the term minority? It’s from the Latin word minor, which means “lesser” or “smaller.” Just because you live or work or study in a place where you are outnumbered doesn’t make you of lesser value.
Some brave people, like students studying abroad or entrepreneurial business agents, are completely surrounded by people not like them. That must be how Abraham felt. “I am an alien and a stranger among you” (Genesis 23:4), he said to the Hittites from whom he bought a burial plot.
It is a tremendous personal growth opportunity. When you are immersed in another culture or language, you have to adapt and learn to survive. People in the minority become bicultural—fluent and knowledgeable in an environment beyond their own. What a gift! It is also intensely lonely. It can be a perfect time to look for people connections to make up for the absence of family and old friends.
Christians who are open to God’s opportunities for accepting one another can pay special attention to the “minorities” in their midst. That’s how God connected Philip with an Ethiopian. Believers who are “aliens and strangers” can also use their differentness to get attention for their message. That’s how Jonah connected with the Assyrians and what started Daniel on his rise to influence in Babylon.
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