It has become incredibly difficult for me to blog lately. It takes such a great deal of energy to really focus on the kinds of things I write about here. Tucking away things that happen during a normal day is burden enough. However, an email from Adam from the blogosphere (http://standstraightandstepforward.blogspot.com/) encouraged me to keep going with this. I would also like to give a shout out to Dave (http://openlygaychristian.blogspot.com/) with whom I have made communication quite a chore. I intend to correct that soon--blessings to you in all the many stressful things that are going on in your life!
I have 2 topics to write about tonight... a) "Moderate" Christians who ignore and/or reject gays and lesbians and b) a friend who is prying
Lately, it has been incredibly frustrating hearing both the ignorance and the silence towards gays by those Christians who label themselves "moderate." Those who talk about it tend to have absolutely no clue other than their own perceptions and biases, and those who don't talk about it would probably affirm us, but they are waiting for some magical "right time."
Yesterday I heard two people with whom I work very closely insist that folks "decide" to become gay because it's a "cool" thing to do. Where the hell is this fairy-tale world that they're living in??? Because I would love to be there! This is one I haven't really heard before, but they were absolutely convinced that it happens. Of course, I had to sit there in silence rather than speak up for myself and the many others whose deep pain and frustration is trivialized and mocked by this safe attitude that homosexuality is some sort of "fad," like crocks or Hannah Montana. I say this is a safe attitude to them, because it depersonalizes the issue and lowers it to a place where one thinks she or he can just tell the person dealing with it to "get over it" and "snap out of it." When will people realize how bad this hurts, how NOT cool we think it is, and how dehumanizing it is to speak of gays and lesbians in such terms. Loving our neighbor implies that we should not mock them or trivialize their gravest struggles.
The second infuriating statement I heard recently was today and it was made by a gentleman who very much disdains Christian fundamentalists, or "fundies" as he so pejoratively calls them. This is a man who has spent much of his life fighting for the freedom of the Christian individual and the individual's competency in sorting out spiritual matters for his or her self. This is a man who has fought against institutions who wished for its members all to conform to one particular religious and moral standard. He would proudly call himself a "moderate" Christian. But the he also proudly states that he walked out of his church because some members and the pastor (whom he immaturely mocks in the process) were open to gays in leadership positions! Way to go, you old fart! You showed them not to mess with the status quo and you showed them what happens when they do: you'll take your money and run along with a whole bunch of other folks!
I'm sorry, but I have no respect for those who think it's somehow righteous for them to consciously destroy unity in a church because some precious children of God have been led to the conclusion that they can live truly as the person they have created to be--and they can be that person in the church.
Why is it that secular institutions must consistently lead the way in civil rights and equality? How embarassing, and how utterly impotent as a moral and ethical influence is the community who follows Jesus Christ.
I more and more feel led to be an advocate for the many people who who struggle to be heard and acknowledged. I feel like someone needs to breaking the silence and speak out against the complete lack of options given by the Christian "center." I am sick and tired of the cowardly approach that we should give the issue some time before really staking out a position.
I am torn because I feel that it would be right for me to speak out against these things, yet I am scared silly to loose family, friends, reputation and ministry over it. The words of Martin Luther King, Jr. from his "Letter from a Birmingham Jail" should disturb and provoke those people of whom I speak, but actually, it disturbs and provokes me:
We know through painful experience that freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed. Frankly, I have yet to engage in a direct action campaign that was "well timed" in the view of those who have not suffered unduly from the disease of segregation. For years now I have heard the word "Wait!" It rings in the ear of every Negro with piercing familiarity. This "Wait" has almost always meant "Never." We must come to see, with one of our distinguished jurists, that "justice too long delayed is justice denied."
I have a very good friend. We both do the same kind of work and we're both damn good at it. We work together on many projects and feed off of each other's contrasting personality types very well. When we're together we come up with some ideas that are almost dangerous.
Today the conversation turned to future career/ministry moves and the issue of my singleness came up. THEN, the question of what to do when someone involved in the hiring process asks, "So, you're not married. Are you gay???" to which I pretty said I would reply, "it's none of your damn business!"
I am nowhere nearly being out to this friend, however, this conversation, coupled with some other remarks he made earlier, along with the very confident answer I gave to his question of what to do in that hypothetical interview situation make me believe that he may be on to me. Should I just bite the bullet and let him know? I do feel somewhat guilty for being not totally honesty about myself with my close friends. But, as I felt before coming out with my one friend who knows, I fear that this would make our friendship awkward, or, worst case scenario, end it. The difference here is that he is male. I have no kind of romantic or sexual attraction to him IN THE VERY LEAST but I would not want to introduce an 800 pound gorilla to our relationship.
In conclusion, I am mentally exhausted by all of this along with the hum drum of work and school. I yearn for a community who understands me and can accompany me along this way, as I do the same for others. I would be so grateful to hear one person in my world say one thing remotely hopeful about the situation of gays and lesbians. I also long for the courage to be an advocate and support for freedom and acceptance for others in my situation. I am in the same place I have been for several months now in that I simply DO...NOT...KNOW what to do.