This is a photo of Brandon Teena. Brandon Teena was a 21 year old transsexual who was murdered by his two rapists so that he could not testify against them. He was raped by two young men who were “friends” of his until the day they discovered Brandon Teena had actually been born a female. His murder was violent. In 1993, when I was only 13 years old, he breathed his last breath. I cannot personally wrap my head around the kind of evil and hatred it takes within a person to commit such an atrocious act as to end the life of a person who has done nothing to harm you, when your only defense is “I don’t like what kind of genitals they have in their pants nor what they use them for.” What makes me cringe even more is the fact so many folks who commit these crimes do so in the name of God.MY God. The same God who calls Himself LOVE. There is no room for hate in the midst of love. You cannot harbor both simultaneously. And yet, so many folks take the bible and twist it’s context. They rally out with “sanctity of marriage” and “God created marriage between a man and a woman.” All ignorant statements considering The oldest historical record dictates marriage laws dating back to the Mesopotamians. These laws are to be found in the tablet called Codex Hammurabi (code of Hammurabi). Long before Christianity ever even came in to existence. Sanctity of marriage? Really? In an age where divorce is so easy and commonplace? Where porn and prostitutes and strip clubs and affairs are all so “normal” we aren’t even shocked any more to hear the stories? We call THIS sanctity? What is sacred about that?
I am a christian. I love my God. He is my heavenly Daddy. I love him with my whole heart. Many of you know at least portions of the old testament. Those in opposition to the GLBT (gay-lesbian-bisexual-transsexual) community sure seem to know the handy parts that seem to condemn homosexuals. I won’t get in to the entire issue of it here. That would make this blog a LOT longer than I want it to be. If you are interested in delving deeper into the specifics of the biblical standpoint of it all, check out THIS link. http://www.gaychristian.net/justins_view.php
I can simply tell you I have questioned, prayed, studied my bible and come to peace with my own personal stance on the subject. Mainly because in the bible, I keep coming back to Corinthians 13. Verses 1-13. You all know it. You’ve read it or heard it read. The love verses. It gives a pretty clear example of what love is defined as being.(patient, kind, holds no grudges, etc) And then in Luke 10:27 you see how Jesus basically wipes away all of the laws and rules and stipulations and breaks it down into pretty basic terms. “Look,” he says “Love your neighbor (ie: all of humanity) the same way you love yourself. And love God with all of yourself.”
Easy peasy. We can get that pretty easily, right? Especially because in Corinthians 13 it spells it out for us, gives us a real clear definition of what love truly is.
Then there are those helpful little verses about not judging other people.
So, you learn to study your bible better and discover that those verses that seem to specifically condemn gay folks really do not apply to modern day homosexuals at ALL and have more to do with the evilness that came with idol worshippers, etc… You learn that the MOST IMPORTANT command is to love all people and love God. You learn what love is. And you learn not to judge.
That….THAT is what being a christian is truly all about.
I am a christian. But most days I am ashamed to admit it. Not because of the GOD that I believe in. No no no, Him…..HIM I LOVE . So much. I could shout my love for Him from the roof tops.
No, what I am ashamed of is my fellow man. Those folks who slap on that name tag that boldly proclaims: “Hello! My name is CHRISTIAN” and then they go around spouting hatred, ignorance, racism, bigotry, sexism…….They hold those signs at funerals so lofty, shouting out words that leave a nasty taste in the mouth of my God. He does not approve, does not support nor condone such atrocities. Because He CAN’T. He is simply LOVE.
In Andrea Gibson’s poem “Ashes” which speaks of the crime of burning gays to death 9which happens more often than you will ever realize) she says:
They can come a thousand times
with their burning match
and their gasoline
with their hungry laws
and their empty mouths
full of prayers
to that God that greeted me at his gates
with his throat full of trumpets
and his tears full of shame
as his trembling palms
collected the cinder of his children’s crime.
God loves. Every one. There is no room for intolerance in his love. No room for hate. If you believe otherwise, you don’t know my heavenly Daddy very well.
I am very outspoken about my beliefs. Anyone who knows me knows two things for certain. One, I love God. And two, I think that all people…..ALL PEOPLE should have the right to love anyone that they want to. I will not keep silent in the face of hatred spewed at the GLBT community. Because somewhere tonight is a teenager sliding that razor down their wrist because they are tired, so very weary of being tormented, mocked and ridiculed for simply being who they were born to be. Somewhere today a couple decides to eat at home again instead of going out for fear of being spit on or sneered at if they choose to hold hands. Somewhere a mother buries her child too soon, her child a victim of a hate crime. The bones of those who knew fear and pain and intolerance and condemnation as their final moments on this earth….all because of who they loved…..those bones cry out in my ears……DO NOT BE SILENT. To stand idly by would make me just as guilty as if I had thrown the first stone myself. I cannot.
This is my youngest son. He will be 2 in August. His name is Blaze.
Blaze saw a stack of dresses in my bedroom a few days ago that were set aside to be packed away until his little sister Lucy was old enough to wear them. He was VERY excited to try one on. My boy who normally wants to run around naked fell in love with a pretty pink dress. He wore it for a couple of hours, went outside to bounce on the trampoline while wearing it, had a grand old time twirling in it. He didn’t give a crap that that dress was “for girls”. All he knew was the damn thing was so comfy and fun to bounce and twirl in. When he slipped in a puddle and drenched the dress he sobbed when I had to remove the dress. We were on our way to the park so I laid him out a few outfits to pick from. He chose a polka-dotted dress instead of his spiderman shorts or baseball outfit. It was very colorful. He pointed at it excitedly and his face lit up once it was on him. I threw on his sneakers and off we went to the park. And he played that day in that dress and had a grand old time. Between his curls and the dress a few folks were not sure what gender he was. One mother asked me “How old is your little one?” I wasn’t sure if she was trying to find out by my response what gender he was or if she simply had enough class and tact to ask it that way because she knew it was rude to presume. I simply smiled and said “Almost two”, leaving out the “he’s” part. Because it really didn’t matter. I wasn’t focusing on his sexual organs. It was simply the child Blaze having fun and being silly and sweet at the park in the sunshine. I watched him playing that day and my heart prayed that he would always feel that content and comfortable in his own skin. That gloriously free and happy. Not ashamed. Not afraid. That no mater who he loves, he will know the wonderful beautiful awesome acceptance and grace of God.
I get to thinking sometimes about this world that I have brought my seven children into. How some days there seems to be so much rage and fury and hatred and blame and guilt and shame and shadows…..that it pulls a blanket of uncertainty over me and I silently pray that they just fit comfortably into the pegs of what society calls “normal” and “acceptable”. Because I don’t want them sneered at or mocked or spit on or punched or burned or buried all because of who their heart longs to love, who they long to be. I don’t wish the path of struggle when it comes to love on them for anything. I want them to only know the good stuff.
But if,….if they come to me one day, any one of them, and they tell me the person they want to grow old with happens to not fit that traditional mold of expectation from society….well, I’ll be right there, standing tall and proud by their side, pouring very ounce of my God-created, God-given love into them. I will stand firm there because at the end of the day what truly matters is love. It is what we each were designed and created for. You cannot condemn how or whom another person chooses to love simply because it isn’t exactly the same as how or whom YOU choose to love. That is not your place. Ever.
I am a christian. And I support love. And I support the right of ALL people….ALL PEOPLE to be who they were meant to be. Whatever their muscle and sinew, heart and flesh crave to be….whatever their soul already recognizes as true self……I support that. Because my children, my precious, precious children, deserve a world where it is safe to be who they are without fear of condemnation or death. They deserve a world of acceptance and wonder and passion and beauty and light and love…..and love…..and love……
And I will never keep silent in my defending every persons right for that world.