I’ve been walking around asking God the question, “How now shall we (I) live?” I’ve been thinking, studying and praying over how now shall I live with the differing positions of my Christian brothers and sisters on homosexuality? I’m not talking about what side of the argument we fall. I’ve landed, as best I can, on a position but that doesn’t answer the question of how shall I live. I want to live well, to acknowledge that unlike God, I am NOT all knowing. Which means I must hold my position lightly, with humility, grace and mercy. I want to love others well even when I disagree. Jesus did command us to love…he said it alot…in a lot of different ways. Must be important to him. I want to love well. I think it’s important. I think it’s important the church too.
Justin Lee writes his story of being torn over this issue of homosexuality. He’s a conservative evangelical man who loves Jesus. Has given his life to Jesus. Wants to serve Jesus. And he’s gay. He’s a man who’s attracted to the same sex. The power of the book is his journey. We walk with him and listen to him ask even debate with himself the very questions (and debates) we have over the issue. He walks us through his search for answers. And his lack of answers.
The one place he couldn’t go for answers? The Church. Christians. It’s wrong. Why is homosexuality the forbidden sin? What does it say about us, Christians, that one of our own is afraid of us? As Justin shares, if he goes to the church for help he will be ostracized perhaps even harmed. So he goes to the internet instead. We need to hear that …The internet! Towards the end of his writings he states this about the church and its response to gays.
“Many people on both sides have imagined that this fallout is a result of the disagreement over the morality of gay relationships. It isn’t. That disagreement is important, but Christians are able to disagree on many theological and moral issues without causing this kind of turmoil. What makes this issue unique is the level of venom and ungrace people are feeling from the church, and it is that-not merely the disagreement-that people are responding to in such strong ways.” (p. 232)
I say shame on us.
Justin ends his book with a challenge to the church. A challenge to love. I found his words resonating with the cry of my heart: How now shall I live Lord?
His words, “We must never let our theological disagreements get in the way of showing God’s unconditional, overpowering grace to everyone we meet.”
I say AMEN.
Read my friend Russ’ review of Torn. http://bloguss.com/?s=torn