The good news of Jesus Christ is about God’s radical love and acceptance. Jesus was about inclusion, not exclusion. Jesus spent the majority of his time with people that the rest of his culture rejected. And Jesus was not afraid to reinterpret his religious traditions in light of the new things God was doing around him and through him. Christians today must do the same by thoughtfully and faithfully adapting the religion they have inherited to speak truth and love to a world the writers of the Bible could never have imagined.
It may take us a long time to redeem Christianity in the eyes of those we have hurt the most. But I refuse to give up trying, and I hope and pray that you will not give up on us. There are churches that will love and accept you as God does. There are churches that will support you as you grow into yourself and discover the person God created you to be. There are churches that will stand up to bullying and name it and the factors that contribute to it as the real sin in this situation, not the sexuality you have been given as a gift of God.
My heart breaks with each new story of bullying that surfaces. Something must be done to change the world we live in so that such things do not happen. Christian churches have a role to play in this—we have contributed to the problem and we must be part of the solution. I promise you that I will not be silent about this issue. I promise you that you are not alone.
Saturday, November 6, 2010
Voices of Faith Speak Out: redeeming Christianity
Presbyterian John Vest writes