I’ve thought this through a lot. I’ve considered writing it often. Today as the SCOTUS made it’s landmark decision and my Facebook feed was filled with hashtags of #lovewins and echos of bigotry and #hatelost, I found the tension too much to bear. I can foresee the day my children will be mocked at school for their “archaic views” and it breaks my heart. So this letter is a request for your help.
#1. Who I am:
I have picketed against Fred Phelps. I have several friends who are gay, or cohabitating that have always felt welcome in my home, amongst my family. I believe if you asked any friend of a different faith, the vast majority would say I have handled them with compassion and kindness. So, I promise, I don’t hate you. I don’t think YOU are what’s wrong with America and I hope some of you would be open to calling me friend one day, which is why I have written out this awkward plea.
I believe the Bible to be the inspired, inerrant word of God. I did not grow up in a Christian home and this was not something I came to lightly. Matter of fact I thought Christians were arrogant hypocrites who blindly followed some goofy legend and yet when I began to actually read the Bible I felt a veil lifted from my eyes and I was smitten. There have been things that vex me at times within its ledgers and yet I cannot help but believe.
I have read the Bible all the way through many times in about 6 translations and cannot get past what it has to say about homosexuality. WELL CRAP! WHAT AM I SUPPOSED TO DO WITH THAT? The Old Testament verses could maybe be put aside as contextual but I struggle to read the New Testament and not come to any different conclusion than: sex outside of Marriage between a man and a woman is sin. I want to believe something else, but I don’t and so here I am, asking for your assistance.
To my LGBTQ friends, I need your help.
#4- My plea:
Please show me grace.
I know many of you have experienced something quite ungraceful from people who would call themselves Jesus followers. I have talked to some who were even beaten for their sexuality and it sickens me. Honestly, I made fun of people for their sexuality before I became a believer at 16 and I am ashamed at my behavior in many areas of my life before I became a believer.
A season is coming, and well, it is already here where I will be called a bigot for what I believe. My son and daughter will be seen as warped children of the KKK in some circles. Yet my beliefs are steadfast and even though at times I would like to trade them in for something more palatable to our society, I believe what I believe.
So, my plea to you is this: Please treat me kindly, perhaps like you have not been treated. My hope is you would respect what my faith teaches and allow me to show you that my love for Christ absolutely still overflows to you. I do not see you as my enemy. I do not see your sin any worse than my own. For the love of Pete, pastors are failing left and right and we would have the audacity to say our crap doesn’t smell? It is only by the life, death and resurrection of Christ that I would have the confidence to declare myself forgiven.
I know to many of you, I will just be a bigot like those in the south, in the 50’s, who thought burning crosses was Jesus’ idea of a good time. However, I really think if you got to know many Christians, you would find someone who firmly believes so much in the Bible and loves you so much that we would so want to speak truth for the sake of your eternal soul, but even if you disagreed vehemently, they would treat you with kindness. It feels awkward and probably a bit annoying to you but I promise sharing what is considered hostile to many, is not always easy for us either. And Yet, I push on because I actually believe what I say I believe. If you would like to be friends with Christians, many of us would be happy to put a gag on this topic and pursue friendship with you. You know how we feel. We know how you feel. I can deal with that tension if you can.
I don’t hate you. I love you, but I need your help.
God Bless you,
City Life Church, San Diego
PS- We can totally go some place other than chic fil a.
PPS- I want you to know that I do not believe this is a choice, nor do I believe just being homosexual is a sin. I am friends with those who are born homosexual and choose not to practice.
PPPS- I'm disabling the comments. We can go hang out at the sizzler and you can tell me how I am wrong but apparently blog comments is not the place.