Imagine, V1.2 (caution: with strong Christian undertones)

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    May 09, 2012 8:35 PM GMT
    Imagine a world without homophobia

    It's easy if you try

    Imagine if all the people who are living with a fear or hatred of homosexuality, whether in themselves or in others, suddenly woke up one day and realized that the sun shines on the "just" and on the "wicked" alike.

    Imagine if all the faceless torsos on Realjock felt safe enough to peek down into the cameras and put faces to the bodies. Imagine if the invisible among us suddenly appeared and made themselves known. "See? I exist. I'm a human being, just like you are." The bible speaks of a mass resurrection that happened when Christ died for the sins of mankind; long-dead saints were suddenly seen walking about and prophesying. The bible also speaks of a resurrection that will happen when Christ returns to earth. I don't think the bible's being symbolic, but if it were to be read symbolically, what it would be trying to say is this: when the sin of our dishonesty is killed (crucifixion) - and when Truth is returned (the Second Coming) - the "dead" are restored to themselves. Truth has the power to raise the dead. They who are disembodied, who are alienated from their very selfhood, once again incarnate their God-given bodies, and their selves. They "prophesy" to the rest of us: they unspeak the lies we have bought into, they unteach the hatred, they unmask the fear. And in their place they declare the truth.

    Bridges are built. Minds might never get changed, but the mind is not the problem: the problem is the heart. I've had Christian friends who mentally believed that homosexuality was wrong - but in their hearts, they loved me greatly and they took risks for me in the protection of my rights, including my right to love. And on some level, they enjoyed the dilemma, they enjoyed the tension of having to work out a path between God's Law and God's Love. It was the spiritual adrenaline rush that Jesus got every time the Pharisees tried to trap him in a catch-22. And that's the plan; that's the spiritual curricula right there - stretching humanness to its limits, engaging the imagination, the mind, the heart and the hands - pushing us to draw on a wisdom much greater than ourselves, the Father's love. The first-century Christians were revolutionaries, they were troublemakers, they were the Powers' worst nightmares. Why? Because they loved radically, and people were getting attracted to it. That bled the Empire's influence.

    After my Christian friends were through spewing the whole "I love the sinner but not the sin" cop-out, they were still called by God to work out a relationship with me. It was sticky, it was messy, and it wasn't the romanticized version of Christian love. It was reality, pure and simple. It's like getting married, or having a baby: the ad never shows the first fight or the first diaper change. "For the Christian God so loved the world" - that he argued us into loving him back? - "That he gave his only begotten son", who paid for our reconciliation with his blood. Love is not a feeling, or a noun; love is a verb. It is work, it is sacrifice, it is patience, it is longsuffering. It takes God to love someone whose thoughts are different from yours. It's impossible. It takes divine power. And it is reaching out to The Other, whether that other is an enemy or not. If we expect Christians to stop being homophobic, we have to upstage them by living out their ethic of love better than they do (I'm a Christian, yet the pronouns change to "them" lol). Christianity is living in the tension of having a law that no one can keep, and loving those that cannot keep it. Ah, but the human heart is so quick at pointing out where others are failing, and so slow at seeing its own failures and becoming more humble and gracious. At the end, God's intention was never about the head, though head-stuff is important; it was about the heart. It was never about facts, though facts matter; it was about truths. It was not about the Letter, though the Letter had to be fulfilled; it was about the Spirit. It was not about Law, though the Law had to be kept; it was about Grace.

    It was never about performance. It was about relationship. Because that's the issue behind the impossible performance, isn't it? In and of ourselves, we are inadequate and deep down inside, we know it. That's the reason relationships have so many communication problems - we run from self-exposure, we flee vulnerability. Adam was naked, ashamed - and hiding from God. And God called out in anguish, "Adam, where are you?" We hurt the ones who love us and we love the ones that hurt us. We insist on performing, we insist on being valued for what we can do, how we look, how much we earn, and how smart we are. We are terrified of unconditional love because we have no control over it - nothing in us guarantees that the person will continue to love us; it's simply a choice that they make.

    And it's a choice humans have wanted to remove from God's power from Day 1. See, if we can get God in our debt - if we can perform and earn our keep - then we don't have to trust him anymore. We can own him because he will owe us. We've ticked all the boxes, God; we've kept all your laws. Now do your part and bless us on our own terms.

    Forget that this idolatrous arrangement would strip God of his very Godhood. In trying to be wise like God we lose our right to just BE, to be human beings, because now that we know what God knows, we have to DO what only God could have done. And of course we can't. That's why Jesus came to do it for us.

    We know that deep down inside we're inadequate so we try to cover it up with performance. And when performance isn't working - we perform harder. We do more crunches. We use more skin products. We affirm our value by having more one-night-stands. Some of us even go to ex-gay organizations. I can't comment on that, I've never gone there. Nor have I ever felt compelled to.

    We forget what we are. We're not human doings, we're human beings. Yet we run from our essential nature - the child that can do nothing but receive the Father's love. Adam was naked. That means that Adam had no way of securing anything in his life - he could only rely on God's grace. Until his eyes were opened and he realized that his plane was flying on just a prayer. And like Peter, whose rational brain couldn't associate the act of walking on water with any guarantee of personal safety, Adam fell from grace.

    We have fallen from grace.

    Thus God gives us the Law no one can keep, so we can get that urge out of our system - the urge to perform, to cover up, to excel. Then one day, we get wise enough to realize something simple: because we are finite, we will never be enough, nor can we ever cover up the truth that we can't BE enough by DOING enough. We cannot use our inability to hide our inadequacy - it is lunacy to even try. Having learned this, we rely on The Infinite for our ultimate affirmation.

    Remember the height from which thou hast fallen.

    Imagine if the most successful "doers" and the most heroic "beings" among us - our biggest sports' stars, spiritual leaders, politicians and neighbors "came out" - not necessarily about being gay, but just about being human. About being real. Then the rest of us wouldn't feel so pressured to keep up a front.

    Imagine if people got vulnerable and exposed themselves instead of preaching down on everybody else from That Very High Place. It's not necessary to "come out" about being gay, but it is necessary to "come out". Come out of your fear! Come out of the isolation, the condemnation, the performance, the suicidalism, the feeling that no one could ever understand you. It's not true! See, God's sun shines on you too! You also count...(Had a weird feeling that somebody needed to read that)

    [Wasn't sure whether to post that or not. But I did warn that there would be Christian ideas, so if you hate Christianity and you read this anyway - my ignorant guess is that you're curiou
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    May 09, 2012 8:47 PM GMT
    The original was better, it covered all the ideas nicely without being too lengthy. Nice try though.
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    May 09, 2012 9:08 PM GMT
    MarkRoger saidThe original was better, it covered all the ideas nicely without being too lengthy. Nice try though.

    Oh no she didn't! icon_lol.gif