Are you a leader or influencer in your church? (we all can be)Are you weary of the debates and division?Are you interested in elevating the conversation?
Yes to all three? Great! Let’s go…
If you ask LGBTQ+ people why most of them have zero involvement with Jesus and the Church, the brave ones would share heart-wrenching stories of hurt and rejection by Christians—and needing to get as far away from that as possible.
That should break our hearts, and that is what we can help make right. As a leader or influencer in your church and community, I invite you to this opportunity and responsibility.
The first step is empathy, and there’s no better way to build that than through story. In recording the Making Things Right Podcast, we explored many stories. One in particular impacted many listeners, as it captures the heart of this whole project.
If I could somehow convince every Christian to simply listen to this story, my work might be complete. I invite you to spend 28 uninterrupted minutes listening to the story of my good friend Caleb. And see how it impacts you.
At the center of the “Making Things Right” project are stories. The 3rd episode in our Podcast series is all about “Knowing Our Stories”, and the common experiences of LGBTQ+ individuals within the church.
Whereas stories like Caleb’s are familiar to some of you, negative experiences of LGBTQ+ individuals within the church generally remain unaccounted for. Instead, we have spent our energy determining and defending positions on the moral and biblical standards of sexuality.
Yet what if that has been at the expense of something more important?
Consider Jesus’ command to love our neighbor, as well as his constant defense of those excluded by the religious of his day. Fast-forward to today and the unresolved hurts of LGBTQ+ individuals. Many of us have played some part, whether actively or as a bystander. I know I have. All of us can be a part of the healing, which I propose is what matters most.
Compassion and beliefs can seem to collide, and you may not yet know how to reconcile the two. I know and respect that tension, as do many others in your shoes.
I don’t know your beliefs, your church, or the LGBTQ+ individuals in your life. But I do know this: there is a next step, just for you. I believe that can be guided by a commission found in Isaiah 61…
“Let us replace what has been lost with beauty.Let us restore the broken places, andrenew what has been devastated for generations.”
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