I would first like to start out confessing that I do believe that sexual immorality is a sin, and I believe that acting on homosexual tendencies is sexual immorality and therefore a sin. I just cannot get around it in the Bible. I thought it only fair that I start out with that to be honest on my stance, but don’t discredit this post because of that. Keep reading.
I do not pretend to understand the mindset of homosexuality. I am a girl and have always liked boys – it’s always been black and white. I don’t pretend to know whether people who are gay were born gay, or became gay because of a life event, or just grew into it. I have heard stories of people who were gay, came to Christ, and are no longer gay – but I don’t think that is typical or realistic. I think that they are the exception. The church would love to pray a prayer over the ‘gays’ and have them all magically turned straight, but I just don’t think that is going to happen. Not that I don’t think that God is all powerful, He just doesn’t usually work like a genie So what message, as a church, does that leave us with? What message are we to share? If someone likes a person of the same gender, not of their own choosing or maybe even own desire, what do we as a church say to those people?
Unfortunately (and I don't know that unfortunately is the right word), if you believe that homosexuality is a sin, then you are left with a message of abstinence. You are left to tell homosexuals that they are to refrain from any sexual behaviors with any person they are attracted to for their entire life. That is a really heavy cross to bear. That is not the pretty, hopeful, positive package that we as Christians like to ‘sell’ to people. That is not all sunshine and rainbows that we like to make out Christianity to be. That is a hard life of struggle and pain. That is a heavy cross and a long road. And one, I cannot honestly imagine bearing.
And so – I argue with God. God – it would be so much easier if people could be in love with whomever they wanted. You would have so many more people come to You if You would just drop this issue. What is the big deal? It would just be so much less messy. That is an impossible standard. And then I am reminded that we were never told the road would be easy, or comfortable, or clean. We were told it would be narrow. We were told that to be a Christian meant we would be carrying a cross. When Jesus was walking to be crucified with the cross on His back, I don’t imagine Him skipping up the road. It became too heavy even for Him to carry and Simon of Cyrene had to come alongside Him to carry it.
I have several friends who are gay. I don’t say that to say look at me – I have gay friends so I am accepting. I actually hate it when people say things like that. I say that to say the issue of homosexuality becomes much harder to grapple with when you put a face to it. It’s easy to condemn people and make up lofty solutions when it’s just a general idea, a general population; but, when you know someone, and you know their heart, and their struggle, and their insecurities – that’s when it gets messy. When you see their love for Jesus – that’s when it gets messy. I don’t know what to do with that. Who am I to judge them or to judge their relationship with Christ? These are people that I love – this doesn’t mean I fully agree with them, but I love and respect them. They are why I grapple so heavily and continue to do so. I don’t want that burdensome life or message for them. I want joy and happiness for them.
I believe as Christians, if we see our brothers and sisters carrying a cross that is too heavy to bear, that we are to come alongside them and help them to carry it. We are not to hate on them for bearing a cross, we are not to ignore them, and we are not to allow them to just be overcome by the cross. Love is carrying their cross when they can’t. And honestly – as a church, we have stunk at this. I wish I had an easier, more positive solution or conclusion. I wish I could be completely accepting of the issue and say love whomever you choose – because that would be so much easier. But, I don’t believe that is God’s standard and I have to honor Him. I believe the reward at the end of the burdensome road will be every so glorious – and that’s the hope I must rely on. And I mean that for everyone, not just for those struggling with sexual immortality. I believe we all have crosses that we must bear – some much harder than others – but there is eternal reward for that temporary sacrifice. So I carry on struggling and grappling and have a deeply heavy heart when I see the brokenness, complication, pain and suffering in life that sin has and continues to create in all walks of life.