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This is not what I thought I would write about.  I thought I would write about my changing views of romance and love over the years as I have grown together with my wonderful husband.  Instead, after years of tip toeing around a question that fuels hate, sorrow, and hope, it is time to talk, it is time to be open, it is time to be vulnerable.

Can a man marry another man?

Can a woman marry another woman?

Writing this question out, so that I can see it, sucks the air right out of me.  I feel fear creep up in me.  Why? Because this question means so much, to so many people.  To some it is the question that determines their rights, to others it questions the Bible’s authority.  This question hurts people.  It divides friends and families.  For some it divides the faithful from the sinful.

What about for me?

I began to realize during my engagement to Tim just how deeply devoted I was to this man, how we were attached at a level that surpassed the physical or emotional, but seeped to a soul level.  I began to wonder, what would it be like if someone told me I could not be married to this wonderful man.  Or worse, what if someone told me not only could I not not be with him, but my love from him represented an habitual sin, representing my unwillingness to surrender to Jesus, and would ultimately result in my separation from my savior, the one Tim brought me closer to each day.

I began to see this question less about sex and more about people.  Less about an act, and more about a relationship.

Therefore I began to explore this question, could a man marry a man?  It took relatively short time to realize that as far as government goes, gay marriage should be legal.  This opinion developed alongside my desire for separation of church and state.

Looking at the destruction carried out by the church throughout history I decided we were better off doing what Jesus said, things like taking care of the poor, feeding the hungry, loving your neighbor, etc.  rather than legislating morality.

I do not want to discredit government or political involvement.  I think there is a lot of good to be done there, I think God calls some people to serve there.  I think we should love our leaders, pray for them, serve them, encourage them.  I think we should advocate for the least of these, but I don’t think that our human leaders are the answer to our problems, I think Jesus is, and I think his ways are.  Therefore, we should focus our attention on our own actions as a church.

I do not think that the church should decide rights and legislation.  Instead of telling people what not to do, we should be focusing on what we can do.

The question for me now lies outside of government, and inside the church.  Can the church marry a man and a man, a woman and a woman?  Can we ordain a gay man or woman?

This has been harder for me because I’m so scared! I’m scared to ask this question because I’m scared of the horror that will cross the faces of some of my devout and more traditional friends whom I love and respect and don’t want to disappoint.  I’m scared to find the answer is no and be in opposition to my passionate, devoted, and gay friends whom I love and admire and respect.  But like I said, it it is time to be open:  I’m honestly asking this question, searching for God’s perfect and merciful truth.  I’m asking  you to do the same.

Why do you believe what you believe? Do you know? Or is it because it’s what you’ve been told?

I’ve realized over several months that my opinions have stemmed only from what I’ve heard.

I’ve heard what the Bible says about homosexuality… it is an abomination, I’ve heard eating shrimp is as well… I’ve heard about Sodom and Gomorrah, and Paul, and all that.  But what do I know for certain about these stories? Anything more than what I’ve heard? Because if not, that is not healthy.  Do I understand the context behind these stories, these short verses? Because if I do not, my opinion is is not well founded.

What do we have to lose by asking?

I want God’s truth, not man’s interpretation.  If we refuse to ask, and only accept what opinions have existed before us, are we no different than the men and women who accepted that slavery was God’s intended and unchangeable structure?  Are we no different than the men who dictated that women were their inferiors, not fit to receive the rights of voting or their level of education? Are we not different than the women who just accepted this as truth?

Is our God not bigger than this question?

He is our shepherd, we know His voice, do we not trust that He will lead us to truth in grace?  He laid down his life in the most humiliating way possible, He has literally conquered death for us, would He not be willing to help us answer a question He knows is deeply rooted in the hearts of many of His children?

I am not writing today to tell you what is right, I am writing today because I want you to just ask.

 The more I look into this question, the more I see that what I have been told is not necessarily true.  I’m not going to tell you what the answer to this question is, what I am going to do is ask that you seek the answer to this question without bias.

What we must not do in this search is forget the people we are asking about.  We can not let fear express itself in hate as we question our standing beliefs.  We must not treat this question as a list of facts and cold theology, but as one that involves human hearts, hearts that are just like ours.  Hearts that experience fear, shame, hope, love, and joy.

But like I said it’s time to be vulnerable: I don’t know all of the answers, but I am now leaning in a new direction, a direction years ago I never would have considered.  I am open now, trusting that God’s grace and truth will be enough to lead me to resolution.

I don’t think we should be afraid to ask our questions, I don’t think we should let pride keep us from finding truth, no matter what our question may be.

“It is helpful and humbling to realize that I can change my mind on something about which I was once so sure”

Jack Rogers

Jesus, the Bible, and Homosexuality

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