Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Love Covers All

I do not like engaging in controversial topics that have no right or wrong answer—such as healthcare reform, whether a Christian should be Democrat or Republican, what denomination one should choose, etcetera. Those things are not clearly outlined in Scripture and some things are left to conviction and interpretation. Homosexuality, however, is not. Let me preface this by saying the following: if you are reading this, I ask you to maintain an open mind as I voice my beliefs and not automatically assume I hate homosexuals and think they are all condemned to Hell, or that I am a close-minded southerner that’s a product of my environment. Please, just hear me out.
I became a Christian when I was ten years old and I grew up in a Christian home with both parents. It is in that statement there that most people would believe that this is exactly why I “disagree” with homosexuality. I do not know if I would be a Christian had my life or culture had been different, because it wasn’t. However, there are plenty of people who grow up in my same life situation that are not Christ-followers, so I don’t necessarily agree with the notion that I am a direct product of my environment. I have been arrested by the grace that Christ has lavished on me and there is no other explanation for my worldview other than that at this point. With that being said, let me make my point. As the Supreme Court convenes to determine the rights of gay marriage from a federal perspective, I believe it is important to express my views and not just sweep them under the rug. Now I realize that I am not a political or religious leader whose views will change the course of the Supreme Court’s decision, but I won’t let it go by without at least expressing where I stand. I do not wish to engage in arguments nor am I necessarily trying to disprove what others believe. I am simply stating what I believe and why.
Now, I love all people- gay or straight. I, in no way, believe that I am better or deserve to be treated better or anything like that. However, I have heard people on the pro-gay-marriage camp say that they do not want the church to agree with marriage, just want the same rights as others. By legally giving the same legal rights to gay married couples as opposite sex married couples, we (the Church/Christians) are saying that we agree, when we do not. Let me go back in history for a moment to the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s: if the Church (when I speak of the Church, I synonymously use this term for Christians) were to say, “We believe that African-Americans are equal to us but they should still go to different schools, eat in different restaurants, etc.” (i.e. Jim Crow Laws), then it would be OBVIOUS that those saying that did not truly believe that African-Americans were equal because they didn’t want the same rights. Fast forward to today, by the Church saying we believe that gay marriages should have the same legal equal rights as opposite sex married couples, we are saying we agree. They are synonymous with one another.
Please know that I am not pointing my self-righteous finger at homosexuals because I know that I am in need of the Savior just as much, if not more, than most homosexuals. I am the furthest thing from perfect and I need God’s grace every single day of my life. By calling sin, sin, does not mean I am condemning, it just means that I calling what is, what is. I believe that if Christians just sit by and don’t stand up for what they believe in then God will leave us to our own devices and that never turns out well:
“Refusing to know God, they soon didn’t know how to be human either—women didn’t know how to be women, men didn’t know how to be men. Sexually confused, they abused and defiled one another, women with women, men with men—all lust, no love. And then they paid for it, oh, how they paid for it—emptied of God and love, godless and loveless wretches. Since they didn’t bother to acknowledge God, God quit bothering them and let them run loose. And then all hell broke loose: rampant evil, grabbing and grasping, vicious backstabbing.” (Romans 1:26-29)
But there is still hope found in redemption. God gives us a chance to return to Him- all of us, not just homosexuals, every single person on earth!! “Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.” (2 Chronicles 7:14)
My hope is that anyone who may read this will understand that true grace and love is found only in Jesus Christ. I need His grace and love every day. I fall short of His glory and yet He still loves me and He still wants me. He still loves you and He still wants you too. “I am sure that nothing can separate us from God’s love—not life or death, not angels or spirits, not the present or the future, and not powers above or powers below. Nothing in all creation can separate us from God’s love for us in Christ Jesus our Lord!” (Romans 8:38-39) There is nothing we can do to make Him stop loving us! So no matter what the Supreme Court rules in favor of, God’s grace and love will forever cover a multitude of sin (1 Peter 4:8)…including my own.

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