The time has come. I’ve been wanting to write about this for a really long time. I’ve typed, backspaced, stared at the ceiling into the night working out how to say it and weighed out the pros and cons of being vulnerable. It’s all led up to this post. I’m sorry if this sounds bossy, but please –
Stop stereotyping people with same-sex attraction as any or all of the following:
Out to convert people they don’t even know.
Pushing an “agenda”….
I could go on, but I think you get the idea. For a lot of people – for a lot of Christians – they hear “gay” and they flash to headlines like “Child with 2 dads begins gender reassignment therapy at age 4”.
I never gave it much thought until an individual whom I dearly love “came out”. Ever since then I’ve become more and more aware of this problem. I don’t want people to know that he’s gay, not because I’m ashamed, the exact opposite in fact. I’m so proud of him. He’s an amazing friend who knows how to listen in a way that I rarely see. He really hears me and when he does respond it’s careful, deliberate and for my benefit. He has a way with words. When he writes he can draw you right in and make you forget about life for a while. He’s courageous (although I’m not sure he truly realizes it). He’s humble, He sees beauty in the most unexpected places and has figured out how to reveal it to those he trusts. He’s thoughtful, sincere, funny, intelligent and so many other things. And my fear is that people would cover up all those amazing qualities with a scarlet letter, if you will. It breaks my heart both for him and for the people who are missing out on knowing him. While it is their loss, it’s also mine and everyone else who is sorting through their thoughts and feelings after a loved one comes out.
I’m not the only one who feels this way. The truth is, there are probably people you’ve talked to every week for years who have a loved one in a same-sex relationship and you’ll never know because they’re afraid you’ll make assumptions that you have no place making. I’ve lived with that fear and it stinks. But how will things ever change if we don’t talk about it? I would have loved to have someone to talk to through my journey of understand and loving, but instead I felt isolated.
So I hope this is the first step in a journey for us together. All those things I listed could easily and accurately be said of the church if we were all judged by the people who are picketing funerals and bombing abortion clinics. But that is not who I am, I despise that behavior and would be crushed to think that someone lumped me in with a few people on whom the media chose to shine a spotlight. You may not want to hear this, but your view on their lifestyle is irrelevant to this discussion. God loves people. He wants us to love people. It’s as simple as that. And how can we love someone when we refuse to know them? When we say hurtful things about the people they love? I get that “you didn’t know”, but that doesn’t make it ok.
By the way, that guy is my little brother.
I would love to open a dialogue, just know that there is no place for rude or wounding language here. What has your experience been? Where can we start to change things in our own circles? Where do you see yourself in all this?
Honor all people. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king.
1 Pet. 2:17