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The phrase "worldview" is often used to describe the lens through which we evaluate everything from today’s news to a friend’s new haircut.
When we embrace Christ, we are given new life. Eternal life, yes, but not necessarily a new worldview. This is an important truth to understand. As believers, the Apostle Paul describes us as new creatures in Christ. The old has passed away and all things have become new (2 Corinthians 5:17). In terms of worldview, however, this does not mean that our past experiences or understanding of reality is without merit or value.
What is new, is how God uses our perspective and experience for spiritual and social good when we humbly allow him to do so. Paul writes about this in his letter to the church in Rome. "All things work together for good for those who love God and are the called according to his purpose." (Romans 8:28) This includes our past pain, personal experiences, and preferences. Therefore, in seeking development of cross-cultural relationships, it is important to keep in mind that your way of seeing things is not necessarily the correct way of seeing things.
Of course personal relationships are important to the health and well-being of any church. In a multi-ethnic church, however, they are of exponentially greater importance. Relationships form the very fabric of a multi-ethnic church because trust is not a commodity so easily assumed in an environment where people must interact with others different from themselves. And get this: cross-cultural relationships take much more time to form and develop. They cannot be agenda driven.
Questions to reflect: Take a moment to consider your own past; where you were born, how your were raised, and where you were educated. When did you receive Christ? And what else has shaped your "worldview" as a person?