Last week, a friend and I were discussing our spirituality. He believes homosexuality is a sin but says he has many gay friends and doesn’t judge them.
“Doesn’t judge them…” The words hung in the air.
“For what?” I asked. “For being who they are? For being who God made them?
How can there be no judgment when you say WHO THEY ARE is a sin?”
The first time I learned about homosexuality was at the age of seven. I found an article about two men having sex in an old magazine. It surprised me! I’d never heard such a thing. But when I asked my father whether it was real, he said yes. Little me shrugged — love is love, right?
However, my parents were religious, which made “Christian religion” a significant part of life. And good ole Christianity loves to try and tell you what’s right and wrong. I say “try” because most of it never made sense to me.
How could a God who loves the world only give everlasting life to a select few? Or send people to a place called hell? Don’t we all have icky sides? And when it came to homosexuality, how could God condemn someone for who they love?
I was an odd child, seemingly born in relationship with God and who at the tender age of three asked my parents questions about God they couldn’t answer.
But thankfully, God gifted me with a curious mind, one that enjoys learning, listening to stories and opinions and then goes deep inside for truth. I wasn’t ever a blind follower. I was (and still am) open to opinions but made my own choice. And no church or religion could ever change that — especially one that is ripe with hierarchy.
My curiosity about homosexuality surfaced again in my final senior high school paper a teacher did NOT want me to write. But that’s another story…
The year was 1999 and homosexuality was a hot topic making research, interviews, and stories readily available. My paper set out to determine whether homosexuality was spawned from birth or born of trauma. At the time, the Christian community was proclaiming trauma as the cause and said it could, therefore, be reversed. But that didn’t make sense to me either.
Why would homosexuals choose a life of judgment, ridicule, open themselves up to being potentially killed or ostracized from their family for sex?
My paper’s outcome showed overwhelming evidence that it was naturally born, just like heterosexuality. Only about 2% claimed trauma as the turning point. I remember classmates being surprised. But it simply settled what was in my heart.
Throughout my life, I’ve had the honor of many gay, lesbian and bisexual friendships, worked with them, listened to countless stories, heard devastating accounts, and only became more baffled at the prejudice.
Because they are people — they are not their sexuality. Some people see a person’s difference as who they are versus the fact they’re a person, but that’s wrong. LGBTQ people are people. Black people are people. Muslims are people. Poor people are people. People are people.
And if you believe the Bible and read it, you know it says Jesus came to save all — A-L-L — there is no part of all. All is ALL. Our need to be saved is simply the need to be returned to love, to acceptance of all, to the acceptance of equality for all.
Native Americans considered gay and transgender people part of normal gender categories before “Christians” came along. Over 450 species in nature are homosexual. Procreation? Aren’t there countless children without homes in this world — do all couples need to procreate to be legitimate?
Then the biblical debate. If you struggle with this, I encourage you to watch the documentary, For The Bible Told Me So. Historians and translators break down the verses and clarify them with context. Or find some perspective in this article that helps “guide faithful Christians as we seek a godly understanding of sexual and gender identity.”
But even when it comes to the Bible, ask yourself, can we really follow a book verbatim that passed through so many hands and was translated so many times? Or believe that it doesn’t contain errors and/or changes to benefit those who sought/seek to control? Hasn’t history shown us that the Bible was manipulated for power many times?
In the end, how can anyone who isn’t LGBTQ know it’s created from man’s perversion? And why is it any of our business?
We are not God and it is not our job to judge anyone else. God never asked us to do that. NEVER.
So inside, I raged when my friend said homosexuality is a sin. My cheeks reddened, I wanted to hang up the phone and never speak to him again. But it wouldn’t solve anything.
Because the fault lies in blindness. He (like so many others) hasn’t spent time learning, seeking to understand, or truly knowing the LGBTQ community. He hasn’t realized that typical Christian religion places people in hierarchies. And because he hasn’t fully experienced God’s love for him, he doesn’t comprehend a God Who never created a mistake.
I understand that for those who take the Bible (and its interpreters) at face value, “homosexuality is a sin” could seem like truth. But I ask you to search deeper. To search more, ALWAYS.
We must learn to think for ourselves and to not accept the regurgitation of any one or any thing, but to listen to what the heart says. NOT what it says in fear, but in love.
All decisions in life are made from a place of fear or love — it’s that simple. Love would never say someone is wrong for who they love. But fear would.
With June celebrating Pride Month, I was inspired to share my perspective in hopes it inspires someone to rethink their judgment. My heart breaks for Christians who still abide by old theology and seem incapable of making their own decisions, from the heart.
Because God is love and all He asks is that we love and not judge others. And IF we can accomplish that, everything else falls into place.
Here’s to love.