I have had far too many tests this week, and they have all been harder than what I am accustomed to facing. That’s good though, right? Anyway, I had to memorize one list for my social psych class that really interested me. This is the list of factors that need to be present in an environment in order to ensure that bonding can occur and prejudice can be diminished between different social factions in a group:
- Mutual interdependence
- Equal status
- Common goal
- Friendly, informal setting
- Knowing multiple out-group members
- Social norms of equality
A few weeks ago, there was a special convo presentation on the use of the KJV in Churches of Christ in India. The speaker, modern and tolerant man that he was, referred to the Church of Christ as his “clan.” We thought that this was so funny, we have been using the phrase to refer to our carpool church group. We call ourselves the Carpool Clan. We’re such a bunch of dweebs, and I love it. It’s so encouraging to have a few Christian friends to spend time with, whether it is going to the beach, baking gluten-free things for Matt, or driving 40 minutes to church. By the way, the definition of “Clan” is:
clan |klan|a group of close-knit and interrelated families (esp. associated with familiesin the Scottish Highlands).• often informal a family, esp. a large one: the Kennedy clan gathered for the celebration.• a group of people with a strong common interest: New York’s garrulous clan of artists.ORIGIN late Middle English: from Scottish Gaelic clann ‘offspring, family,’ from Old Irish cland, from Latin planta ‘sprout.’
This past week was rush week. I have never experienced anything like it. Every day was a fashion show. Every night, a party. hundreds of girls all vying for the same slim number of slots. They’re always talking about the possibility of becoming “sisters!!!” I didn’t know Mattel had manufactured so many Malibu Barbies. Oh, and all of the Big Sisters have these adorable oversized tote bags with their letters and their logo on the side. Because, you know, backpacks are soooo middle school. Inspired by this, Sarah and I started our own sorority: Zeta Chi Phi. It’s a hybrid of our two societies from FC. Turns out, however, that it is already an existing Sorority. Oh well. I made us little signs for our door, so that everyone knows what sisterhood we belong to. We’re looking to have our totes in by spring, complete with Narwhal logo.
What do these three random stories have to do with each other? Well, for one, I just tricked you into reading them all. Another similarity is that they all have to do with group-ness. When I was reading those 6 ways to decrease prejudice, I was struck by the fact that all of those items should be characteristics of the church. That is how it is supposed to be. And, as weird as the clan idea was to us, aren’t we supposed to be just a large family? Mr. convo man didn’t even know how right he was. Why are all these girls rushing to get into the greek alphabet soup of sororities? They want to belong too. It’s just a blessing that Christ’s blood is free, and there is no cap on the number of people who can get baptized. It’s not even like you have to try-out, or interview, and see if you “fit” with the clan. The clan should have those 6 elements. It should be a family.
Unlike sororities, it isn’t about whether or not you are willing to wear boat shoes, it’s about whether or not you are willing to get your feet wet serving the almighty God. That’s our common goal, right? This isn’t a social club. It’s a clan.
Right now, I am still learning to have gratitude for the multitude of blessings that have been showered upon me (something that I am very slow to learn, it would seem). It is something that I fail at continuously, and I pray that I will grow in that so that I can better shine my light. I have two possible job options, hopefully at least one of them will come through. I had my first drug test this week. I would tell you that I passed, but sometimes I am not sure about what Sarah puts in my tea.
Peace, love, and shoes.
“And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.” Colossians 3:15-17