Sunday, January 31, 2010

Do I Love in Deed or Just Words?

This question has been bothering me and has caused me to think through some issues and to give my love capacity a heart check.

A current social trend is causing me some concern. That trend is that it is becoming more acceptable for someone to identify oneself as preferring a same-sex partner. We have different labels for both men and women.

My concern is not about someone else's decision and choice; it is my problem with how I think and can I love that person without judgment.

I now know several people who have made this choice. Some are open about it, some hide it, and some fight about it.

In Christian circles, there seems to be an attitude of judgment, shame, and exclusion. I can even say that it seems to be one of hate. Isn't that an oxymoron? Christian people hating and not loving some who have made a choice that disagrees with their belief system.

I have interaction with many who are not in Christian circles. Some of the comments I hear them say are: Who cares? What business is it of mine what another person chooses in that area? That's not for me, but I respect someone who makes that choice. And other comments that don't seem to have a sense of judgment about them.

Someone asked me a few years ago if I still believed the Bible. What prompted that question was that I was not so judgmental any more and not so OCD about my interpretation of certain scriptures. My answer was that of course I do, but I have changed my opinion about what I believe the scriptures are saying. My emphasis now is on the person and showing grace and love while still holding truth in my beliefs.

I'm startled that same-sex preference people say that the group of people who are the most hateful and the least accepting of them are Christians. What an indictment against us! It makes me think of what the Pharisees said of Jesus that he associated with those who were not acceptable to them. The very righteous, judgmental people of Jesus' day were astonished that He would show love and acceptance to the ones who were living contrary to their religious beliefs.

I love the statement, "They will know we are Christians by our love." Isn't that the first thing we should be concerned about? Not a wishy-washy love that has no grace and truth, but a genuine love and acceptance of the person even if that person doesn't believe like I do.

I want to write about this in the next few posts on this blog.
I welcome your comments.


Marcy Faye Hallden said...

Man, this is SO good. I think you are right on!! And I want my son to see his mom and dad loving people--and not shrinking back from loving people who are gay--but having them over for dinner and truly loving them. Thanks for this post.

Cathy_H said...

It's funny that though the circumstances change, the issues never change.

Back in Jesus' day, people believed that physical illness: leprosy, blindness, etc were because of a person (or his parents) sin. Tax collectors, prostitutes, foul-mouthed fishermen...and that is who Jesus spent all of His time with.

How can we miss that?

Bobby Brwon said...

I have many gay friends. I have been in their homes and to their parties. I find them to be no different than the rest of us except for their sexual preference. They work, play, ranch, hunt and vacation just like everyone else. In fact I find them to be extremely loving and thoughtful as a group of people.

These verses from the Message come right after Pauls mention of gays and might be helpful.

Romans 2
God Is Kind, but Not Soft
1-2 Those people are on a dark spiral downward. But if you think that leaves you on the high ground where you can point your finger at others, think again. Every time you criticize someone, you condemn yourself. It takes one to know one. Judgmental criticism of others is a well-known way of escaping detection in your own crimes and misdemeanors. But God isn't so easily diverted. He sees right through all such smoke screens and holds you to what you've done.
3-4You didn't think, did you, that just by pointing your finger at others you would distract God from seeing all your misdoings and from coming down on you hard? Or did you think that because he's such a nice God, he'd let you off the hook? Better think this one through from the beginning. God is kind, but he's not soft. In kindness he takes us firmly by the hand and leads us into a radical life-change.

Marjory Brown said...

It is most interesting when I consider how I once thought about homosexuals or drinkers or 'partiers' name it, I had a judgment!!! It makes me quite sad when I think about that. We all have a mark, and it is the same for everyone (Christ). I find that I miss 'mine' often, and so how could I ever condemn someone else, when I have no clue where their heart is about missing the mark!! It is a heart issue, you know, and my calling is to LOVE. Marjory Brown