Equality, is a word that carries a lot of history, emotions, and baggage with it. When one thinks of equality they may think of America's history, the Civil Rights Movement, Women's Rights, Freedom of Religion. Equality in the modern day is now a question concerning the homosexual community, and every one seems to have an opinion. I generally am not one to speak out on political issues, because quite honestly I am generally oblivious. However, this is an issue near and dear to my heart, and one in which I would like to voice my opinion. I am not writing this blog today to sway anyone's way of thinking, debate, or call anyone out. Instead, I am writing for my own personal memory. I want to be able to look back at this post 50 years from now, and remember my view point and the person I was in 2013. I want the passion I have concerning this topic to forever be a part of my history. So, with that being said, please do not comment in the form of debate, I am not one to debate, nor will I. We are all entitled to our own opinions and I respect that right.
If you would have asked me 10 years ago whether or not I supported gay marriage I would have answered with a very quick and honest "No". You see 10 years ago I was a senior in high school, who lived in a small town surrounded by mountains and sheltered from the world beyond them. I knew very little of the homosexual community, and where I am from, especially at that time, there were very few citizens who were openly gay. I was very close minded to the topic and I too used to think "The Bible says homosexuality is a sin, so therefore they should not be able to get married". I did not understand people who were gay. I didn't understand why they would "Choose" to go against God and indulge in such a "big" sin. Quite frankly...I didn't get it.
10 years later I am a much different person. I am still the God fearing and loving Christian that I was 10 years ago, and I am not downing the person I used to be. I feel as though I was taught so much about Christianity throughout my young life, and God helped to build my character into a person who was on fire for him. I am grateful for the teachers and mentors that taught me the ways of God throughout my young life, but I also feel as though there is a time when each Christian has to evaluate who and what they believe. These beliefs do not need to be based upon anyone's opinion other than your own, and what God has personally taught you. So, that is what this post is about. My struggle/study of the homosexual community, God, and what I feel as though I have been convicted to stand up for.
3 years into college I moved into an apartment with 2 girls from high school and a boy from my hometown who is gay. This experience is when my eyes were really opened to re-evaluate my views on homosexuality. Living with C really allowed me to understand the inner struggle of a person who has recently come out to family and friends. C's personal story tore at my heart strings, and caused me to ache in a way that I had never experienced before. He grew up as a preachers kid, was saved and followed God daily, and upon coming out was basically told "God did not love him", and he felt as though his own family did not love him. That broke my heart. To me the answer was so simple. God is love. God loves all. Why in the world would God love a homosexual any less? I inwardly struggled with this question for a long period of time. Throughout my experience living with C we had many discussions. One in particular I remember was very emotional. He broke down telling me how he had always been gay, even when he didn't know what gay meant. He remembered being attracted to Aladdin as a young child, and thinking that Ken (the Barbie doll) was hot. Of course, as many people who are gay do, he suppressed these feelings and tried to forget about them for years. He had relationships with girls, he tried to force himself to not be gay, he prayed for God to make him straight, but you know what he was still gay. Many people say that a homosexual chooses to be gay, and that they should just ignore it. However, I feel that to be completely and utterly false. I believe that "God created our inmost being". I also understand that in the Bible it says homosexuality is a sin. Insert my inward struggle. If God creates everyone with a certain personality, and plan, then if homosexuality is a sin, why are they created this way? That is an question that I have lamented and prayed over for years reaching out for an answer. I have not received the answer yet, but I have received the conviction to love and accept, and sometimes fight for the respect of members of the homosexual community. I have prayed multiple times "God if I am suppose to oppose gay marriage convict me" and time and time again I have not felt convicted. I feel like since I have been so exposed to the members who make up that community, and felt compassion for their stories that it is utterly impossible for me to feel convicted about equality for them.
With that being said, that is my personal opinion, and every Christian is entitled to their opinion and convictions. We all have a place in God's grand plan. Yours may be to fight against it, while my place may be to stand back, and show love to my friends who the decision effects. I do not judge either way. However, I do feel as though the question of equality is not one that we need to fight against. I understand that America was founded under God, and I pray that God will always be in control of our country. However, I feel as though the fight against homosexual marriage is not a religious issue. I understand the points Christians are making, I honestly do, and like I said 10 years ago I would have said the same thing. However, now that my eyes are opened and I have so much love for the members of the homosexual community I do not see them being wed as an abomination to God, or taking God out of America. What I see is the beauty and emotion of people crying out to be accepted for feelings that they can not change. They are harming no one, but yet are being cursed at, ridiculed, and told they are sinners. Phrases like "love the sinner hate the sin" are said to them.......how does that phrase express Love? People say God Loves Everyone........oh yea accept the homosexuals. I honestly do not understand how it is any of our business to judge them. Sure you think it is a sin, and you are just trying to let them know, but you know what, maybe God is already working on them. Maybe they are like my old roommate and "love Jesus, pray every night, but cry because everyone tells them Jesus doesn't love them back". Oh how quick we are to place the plank in another persons eye. Personally I feel as though God will handle each and everyone of us when we get to heaven. Our job on Earth is to love God, show Gods love to others, and pray for one another. God handles the rest. He made these humans, he loves them, and I feel as though all the Christian community is doing right now is pushing humans crying our to be loved away from God.
Marriage to me is a beautiful thing. If two people, regardless of sexual orientation, want to commit their life to one another forever, that is beautiful!! Everyone sins and falls short of the glory of God. I lie, I complain, I doubt God, I am not always kind, I gossip, I am sometimes rude, I anger easily, I hate.......I am so filthy in terms of the Christian I should be. However, that is the beautiful part about grace. I fall short, I will never be perfect, there will always be sins/issues I struggle with. There will never be one day that I do not fall short of the glory of God. However, I am accepted because I am straight? Because I do not commit the "horrible sin of homosexuality". I will enter the gates of God because I am not gay, but too bad for that other guy. I am sorry but how ignorant. A sin is a sin is a sin. We answer to God in the end for what we stood for, what sins we committed and the life we chose. Do I believe homosexuals can be Christians even if they never turn from their homosexual lifestyle? Yes! Do I believe they will be accepted into heaven? Yes! I feel as though our job as Christians is to love, accept, and worry eternally about ourselves. I personally feel as though there are much bigger "religions/political" issues to fight for. Issues in which people are actually being harmed. Equality for people to make their own choices and love who they want, in my opinion is not our business as Christians. My personal conviction and belief, but I do not feel as though equality for the gay community will bring America any further from God than it already is. Love however, that can move mountains. That can make the difference. That can be the Christ in this fallen nation. Love is what it is all about.