As I have contemplated the Supreme Court ruling that took place earlier this week I return to many thoughts I have had over the past months in regard to homosexuality. For quite some time I have not known how to deal with it. One of my favorite friends from our time in Tampa was gay and I absolutely adore her, my husband’s cousin and his boyfriend are gay and they are wonderful men. As I process what these people have experienced throughout their lifetimes, the struggles, the feelings of being an outcast, questioning themselves and even God, my heart hurts for them. The life they have experienced because of their orientation must have been so hard. The joy they must have felt after Friday’s ruling must have been so affirming of who they feel they are.
I love these people, I cry for their struggles, but as a Christian I also know what the Bible says, and my heart hurts even more for them. We are all separated from God because of sin, we were born sinful, each and everyone of us. As a Christian it is not my place to judge or condemn, it is not my place to look on those outside of the Church and call them to live a life acceptable to those within the Church. It is my place to love them and to draw them to Christ with that love, like a moth to a flame. And if they choose Christ it is also my place as a Christ follower to warn them, just as with all others who come to Christ, that they must set aside sin when accepting Christ. That doesn’t mean change who they are but to no longer practice sinfulness. This is where the real rub comes in, this is where Christ becomes the Cornerstone or the stumbling block. We ALL must set aside our sin when coming to Christ.
So as I say these things, let me be abundantly clear this is not for those outside the Church who are in sin, regardless of what that sin might be. This for those within the Church or wanting to become part of the Church. It is a warning that Christ sacrificed all and He requires us to do likewise, not because He is unfair or unloving but because He wants to give us something so much better- relationship with Him. 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 tells us that “those who practice homosexuality…will not inherit the Kingdom of God.” Notice the wording here doesn’t say those who are homosexual it says those who practice that behavior will not inherit the Kingdom. So please, if you claim to be a Christian, do not allow our brothers and sisters in Christ who struggle in this sin to continue on alone, or to continue practicing the act. Instead walk with them, stand in the gap and pray with them, pray that God would strengthen them (and all of us) to turn away from our sinful desires. Not so that we can condemn them and judge them but that they might finish the race victoriously. Just because the world lies and says something is ok doesn’t mean the Church needs to bend to those ideas. We have a higher calling, let us not allow one another to continue in sin, but walk alongside one another interceding, being honest about our shortcomings and acting as the body should. There is no reason this change in our country’s law needs to destroy the Church. It can be an opportunity for further honesty and transparency and a showing of love to those who struggle both inside and outside the Church. Let us in the Church not look on homosexuality as the worst of all sins, as if it is unforgivable or somehow unable to be overcome through Christ’s strength. But let us also not sway too far to the other side and take our cues from the world and condone and accept what God calls sin, whereby we prevent our brothers and sisters from receiving the Kingdom that they are seeking. “We have ALL sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified by His. Grace. As. A. Gift(!) through the redemption of His son Christ Jesus.” Romans 3:23-24 a