Lesbian and Gay Relationships

I have gay relationships. I have lesbian relationships too. I think God is pleased.

There seem to be quite a few people in my profession who fall into one of the LGBTQQ categories – lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning. In fact, our professional association created an LGBT Section a few years ago, much like we have sections for people with other common identifiers (such as ethnicity). The opening reception for the LGBT Section was at one of the association’s midyear conferences a while back, and I was there with a friend of mine who organized the formation of this new group. He even declared me an auxiliary member, since I was hanging out with him as he greeted the other members. Not that auxiliary membership actually exists, but if it did I’d be a shoe-in.

Why was I there? Because, like I said, he’s a friend of mine.

He is one of the people I am closest to, not too far behind my wife in that regard. We call each other up when things are on our minds and we need to talk. In fact, he called last night and my wife and I put him on speaker phone so we could all chat as we made dinner. He’d heard that our daughter’s car got totaled and since she lives 10 minutes from him but 8 hours from us, he offered to loan her his car. He and I borrow sweatshirts from each other when it’s cold. He and his husband have dinner with me and my family. Getting together is rarer than we’d like, since we live at opposite ends of the state, but when we do see each other it commences with a hug. Go ahead and call it an intimate friendship. I do.

I also spend time with other gay and lesbian colleagues from up and down the state. We serve on committees together, make dinner reservations if we’re at the same conferences, and support one another. One of them is even a person I turn to for prayer support at times, as she does me.

As I said, I have lesbian and gay relationships and I think God is pleased.

You see, Jesus spent time with people who were on the margins – the woman at the well in John 4, Zacchaeus the tax collector in Luke 19, the woman caught in adultery in John 8,  the woman who used her own hair to wipe her tears from Jesus’ feet in Luke 7, to name a few – and he wasn’ concerned with how it looked to the upright religious leaders around him.

Why do I identify with my lesbian and gay friends? Because I think Jesus would have.

My friends know my faith. It comes up in conversation often. Jesus talked to his friends and acquaintances about God; so do I. In fact, as odd as it may seem, I actually find it easier to do so with these particular friends than with others sometimes.

And let’s face this fact too. Even though my colleagues have reached the pinnacle of their profession, they can still be marginalized at a moment’s notice. Each and every one of them is always a hair’s breadth away from unfair discrimination and downright bullying. Make no mistake about it, it is still dangerous to be homosexual in America.

These are my friends. I like them and find them a pleasure. I think they feel the same about me.

I also love them. I think Jesus does too.

Jesus said to them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.” (Mark 2:17.)

[Jesus also said,] “The Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” (Luke 19:10.)

My friends aren’t so different from me. They need Jesus. So do I.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

17 Responses to Lesbian and Gay Relationships

  1. Aimee Byrd says:

    Tim, you would LOVE the book I just reviewed on my blog today: “The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert.” It is written by a woman who was a lesbian/professional. As she was researching a book she was writing against the Religious Right, she befriends a pastor who is not like any Christians she’s known. Over the course of almost two years, she is converted. Her whole life changes radically.

  2. Jeannie says:

    I appreciated this so much this morning: it needs to be heard. Thanks!

  3. janehinrichs says:

    I too appreciate this post. I have found “nice” Christians who otherwise wouldn’t say anything off-color about people in general will think it is okay to put down someone in these lifestyles and not feel guilty about it whatsoever. We are all people. We are all in need of Jesus.

  4. This post warms my heart. Thank you for writing it.

    I have some really close, intimate friendships with members of the LGBT community. It is hard to witness the hurt that the church causes my friends by flippant comments tossed around. Or worse. I have been known to actually leave rooms crying because of it, or am forced to stay off of Facebook for days at a time because it’s too much to handle.

    Like you said- Jesus hung out with people on the margins.

    So church: what are we doing??

    • Tim says:

      Your sensitivity is inspiring to me, Rachel. Leaving the room may be just the strong witness the other people need, even if they are not clear on why you got up and left.

    • Rachel’s heart for the LGBT is tremendous! I love you, girl! I hope those you know will see Christ through YOU and that they would not be wronged by others who claim His name any longer!!
      Tim, This was a beautiful post. I wish more people were like you rather than pushing people away and being cruel to them. Jesus loves all people and hopes that we all would transform our lives towards Him, and that is what is important! Hope your daughter’s car is okay or that she got one somehow.

  5. Anne Bogel says:

    Oh, Tim. Thanks for this.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Hey Tim,

    I struggled to write something appropriate in your post comments and kept hitting the delete key after numerous attempts. My extended family broke in two after my uncle came out as gay, and the way it was–and is–handled continues to break my heart nearly two decades later. I wish and hope and pray that my family members would eventually come to a place where their attitude more closely resembles yours.

    And now I keep hitting the delete key, trying to get the words right. I’m going to give up for now, but I wanted to you to know how much I resonated with this post this morning.

    (Also, have you heard of Kelle Hampton or read her book Bloom? She’s best known for being the mother to a child with Down Syndrome, but I had no idea that she was “thoroughly messed up by church” (her words) as a kid when her pastor father and mom divorced because her dad was gay. She covers that topic in her memoir with love and grace.)

    Take care,

    Anon.

    • Tim says:

      I am so glad you found the words to leave here with us, my friend. That is heartbreaking and inexplicable and yet all too common all at the same time. Praying.

      Tim

      P.S. I’ve heard of Bloom, but don’t know any details of it or her life. Thanks for the recommendation.

Talk to me (or don't)

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s