There are two ways to be different.
The first is to be different for differences sake. Much of the world will try to be different to stand out from the crowd. But the ironic thing is that often their value is found in the very crowd they want to stand out from.
This kind of different will always be driven by the changing fads, fashions and phases of popular culture. Whether this ‘difference’ is expressed as rebellious or in outstanding excellence or performance, the ‘different’ person will always measure themselves up against the people around them. In this way, ‘difference’ is not really different at all, but a familiar chain that connects a persons value to what others think of them.
The second way to be different is to follow your convictions, and in particular the direction and leading of the Holy Spirit. Your worth is not found in what the crowd may think of you, but in what God thinks of you. You are free to be exactly who He has made you to be; that is, naturally different!
The Holy Spirit is called ‘Holy’ because He is different and distinct from every other spiritual being. Where evil spirits are destructive and bring death, the Holy Spirit is creative and gives life. There is no one else like the Holy Spirit.
The word, ‘Holy’ literally means ‘to be different’, hence the name given to the third person of the Trinity, ‘Holy Spirit’:
‘The fundamental (core) meaning of 40 (hágios) is different. [Someone who is ‘holy’ shares the] “likeness of nature with the Lord” because [they are] “different from the world.” (HWS)
God also calls those who belong to Him and are created in His image to be different also:
‘Just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.” – 1 Peter 1:15-16 (NIV)
In other words, “be different because I am different”.
Refuse to be chained to the expectations of popular culture, but instead choose to be different as you follow the leading of the Holy Spirit!
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