Lesbian and Gay Relationships – a repost from the archives

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 LGBTQQIA categories – lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersexual, asexual. 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 mid-year conferences a while back, and I was there with Dave, 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, Dave’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. Dave 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’t 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,] “The Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” (Luke 19:10.)

My friends aren’t so different from me.

We all need Jesus.

***

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30 Responses to Lesbian and Gay Relationships – a repost from the archives

  1. Aimee Byrd says:

    This post is screaming for the book recommendation, The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert. I’m sure you heard the buzz on line, but I’m glad that it’s getting the publicity it is. Rosaria Butterfield really challenges the reader with her story–about our preconceived notions and treatment of the Gay & Lesbian community, just how lost she was, and one pastor and his wife who truly became her friends, accepting her, although not approving of her lifestyle. Over time, this led to the “comprehensive chaos” that she calls her conversion. It’s gritty, real, and beautiful.

    • Tim says:

      Good recommendation, Aimee. Now I’ve got one more book to keep an eye out for!

    • Kathleen says:

      There’s a GREAT write up of this book in the March 23, 2013 edition of World Magazine called Journey of Grace. Thanks for reposting this; a timely reminder to walk in mercy and compassion in Him, knowing we all need Jesus.

  2. Jeannie says:

    Liked this the first time, like it today. It really is that simple: we’re all human beings who need each other & God. Thanks.

  3. Amy Kaneko says:

    Oh how this post sings of love and good news.

  4. This is a great post. Jesus wasn’t afraid to hang out with the least of these, with people society marginalized. We as Christ-followers should share his example. Jesus didn’t beat them over the head with their wrong lifestyle. Yet He did show them the right way to live–and some repented, and some didn’t. But that wasn’t Jesus’ concern. He said, “Sin no more,” but He still loved those who chose to walk away from Him. It’s so hard to live like He did in our society, I’m not even sure what it means or how to do it. But I’m trying.

  5. Thanks Tim, as ever, for a clearly written and loving post! Also a great, attention-grabbing headline! 🙂

    • Tim says:

      I am so glad you liked it Jen. As for being loving, if you knew my friend who started the judges’ LGBT section, you’d know how easy it is to love him!

  6. Nancy Van Wyck says:

    My grandson and partner will be getting married here in August we love our grandson dearly and we are happy that he chose a wonderful man to spend his life with. We know the Bible is against this and it is for man and woman to be married so I will never feel that they are married in God’s eyes but if these things pass in the laws then its going to happen. I surely would never want to lose my grandson over something like this. Thanks so much for your post Tim.

    • Tim says:

      And I think it’s clear in the Bible that God would not want you to lose your grandson “over something like this” either, but to embrace him and love him as one who is made in God’s own image. Bless you in your love for him and his family, Nancy!

  7. Nancy Van Wyck says:

    You are such an encourager Tim and thank you.

  8. shaunagh61 says:

    No wonder you like Jane Austen. She was real. She was authentic and did not promote hypocrisy. I feel that these ideas lead to happiness. Check out my blog, http://happinesswithausten.wordpress.com/

    • Tim says:

      Shaunagh, I am so glad you came by, and thanks for the link to your place. It looks like you have some wonderful Austen insights and reflections there. I do a lot of my Austen interacting over at The Republic of Pemberley (pemberley.com). Do you visit there?

  9. Pingback: 4th-Week-of-the-Month Blog Break! | Identity Renewed

  10. The one problem I had recently concerning this issue was a young Facebook friend (claims to be a Christian) who was advocating no distinction bathrooms and I wonder where we are going with this. People could then be raped in a bathroom. What are your thoughts, Tim?

    • Tim says:

      I recently read about one local government considering an ordinance that would require people to use the bathroom assigned to their original sexual identity, so a transgender person would be required by law to use a bathroom most onlookers would think to be the wrong one.

      As far as the likelihood of rapes in public restrooms, it happens under the present law among same sex assaults. Whether unisex bathrooms would increase this to include more opposite sex assaults I don’t know.

  11. Pingback: Boy Scouts, Homosexuals and Jesus – churches shouldn’t run away from gay kids | Tim's Blog – Just One Train Wreck After Another

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  13. This is fantastic, Tim. Like you, some of my closest friends are LGBTQ. I’m tired of people seeing something wrong with that–or, almost worse, seeing it as some sort of merit badge, like I have a token gay friend ergo I’m fulfilling Matthew 28:18-20. I just want it to be normal.

    You’re awesome, in your writing and in your faith. Keep it up.

    • Tim says:

      “token gay friend” – Like you, Liz, I want this to end for Christians so that we just have friends (not gay friend, or friend with a disability, or homeless friend, or whatever). Thanks for the encouragement, too!

  14. This is such a heartfelt post. Very sweet. And it’s a good point that anyone on the margins is a hair’s breadth away from discrimination at any time.

    • Tim says:

      Thanks, Nancy. I think too that any one of us could find ourselves marginalized without even seeing it coming. Jesus, thankfully, invites us to come in and be with him for eternity, amen.

  15. Dee Parsons says:

    Awesome post, Tim. Thank you.

  16. Dee Parsons says:

    Whoops, i hit the send button too quickly.

    My dearest friend on the Navajo Reservation was a gay ENT doctor who decided to give a few years of his life serving this needy population. He lived next to my husband and I in a duplex.

    My husband worked long hours so my friend often joined me for dinner and the movies. One time he became very ill and I took care of him until the infection was cleared. We still send each other Christmas cars.

    I didn’t start the friendship to *witness* to him. I started it because both he and I needed a friend and we had much in common, including a nutty sense of humor. I am grateful that he was part of our lives for those two years.

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