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Why Are People so Different?


For You formed my inward parts; You knitted me together in my mother's womb.  I praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.  (Psalm 139:13-14a ESV)

Let’s face it; there is no anxiety like people anxiety!  Strained or broken relationships can be the source of great hurt in our lives as relationships can either put the wind in our sails or they can suck the wind out of our sails. It is often a challenge trying to successfully navigate our various networks of human relationships which is perhaps why we end up concluding that people are difficult.

Admit it; you have made that comment a time or two in your life. It’s such a popular human issue that hundreds of books have been written on the topic with almost no variation to the titles; if you don’t believe me, conduct a Google search and see for yourself.

What if we didn’t view people as difficult but simply different?

God created us uniquely and that means that we are different. Speaking to Jeremiah, God said; “I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb.” (Jeremiah 1:5a NLT)  Most of us are familiar with Psalm 139: 13-14 , those verses that speak of us being “fearfully and wonderfully” made.  If we believe that to be true for ourselves; then it must also be true for everyone else.

So how might a constant awareness of that fact change the way you treat others? 

Scripture has much to say about our differences, in terms of religion, ethnicity, gender, culture, tribe, politics, society, and economics. Moreover, Paul, in the New Testament talks at length about our differences as individuals, urging us to use those differences for the sake of the body of Christ. Paul says that we are what we are and that we have been given specific gifts with measured amounts of grace. (Romans 12:6, 1 Corinthians 15:10)

It’s no wonder that scientists have found human dynamics to be such a fascinating field of study and why they have developed models of human behaviour and categories of personalities. These studies assist us, laypeople, in getting to know ourselves better, providing useful tools for us to achieve the most effective results with others. 

Winnie the Pooh image 9Though not scientific, I thought it would be fun to look at some of the similarities in the people we know and the main characters from the Winnie the Pooh series. Won’t you play along?

Christopher Robin is the “human” in the story with a wonderful imagination (vision) that brings this cast of characters to life. Though he is not always available, he is the one who has all the answers when the animals are unable to figure things out and guides them out of some tricky situations.

Pooh Bear is the star of the show and rather absentminded, focused on one thing  -honey - at the expense of everything and everyone else. But he is such a pleasant "person" to be around with the most reassuring voice.

Piglet is the worrier but he is loving and thoughtful, frequently finding ways to demonstrate his consideration for others. All he needs is a reassurance that things will turn out alright.

Though Eeyore is known for being negative and gloomy, if you observe his "personality", you find that he is very kind and places a high value on friendships. 

We can’t forget Rabbit whom I call “Mr. Know-it-all”. Rabbit thinks that he has the best solution to any problem the gang may have created but they can definitely count on him to come up with a plan and fix things.

Yet my favourite character is Tigger (that’s T-I-Double Guh-Er) because of his optimism and the fact that he is always in a great mood but we all know that he often acts without thinking which lands him into some dicey predicaments. 

Although they are very different, together, the variety of their personalities allows us to enjoy the many adventures of Winne the Pooh and see things from different perspectives. How dull the show would be if they were all the same! 

How dull life would be if we were all the same and did things in the same way!

I believe that God expects us to celebrate our differences (Ephesians 2:13-22). That’s why He made you to be you and not an imitation of someone else. You were given the specific makeup and limitations that He gave you (Psalm 139:13), you were born at the time and place that He determined and you live where He has planted you (Acts 17:26) with a specific purpose (Ephesians 2:10).  Rather than dwell on the differences around us, let us live in harmony with one another as the Bible instructs us – Romans 12:16.

Enjoy this throwback by Acapella Kids – Living in Harmony.


Yolande Knight womensministry@arlingtonwoods.ca


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