Archive for December, 2012

What is the role of a Bishop in the anglican church?

He is, like all overseers a shepherd of the flock, but it seems some bishops have forgotten that their flock includes LGBT people. The hatred which they target with their ill-thought out words and judgements are nothing like that of the loving care of a shepherd over his sheep.

What is also sad, is that the other shepherds upon seeing the behaviour of their fellow shepherds to the flock, do not appear to be making a lot of noise, or intervening, if you are LGBT then it is like a “postcode lottery” of how you will be accepted in your local church.

Bishops, you need to start being shepherds. Please, stop judging, start loving, stop destroying, start building, start relating, start understanding. Otherwise you may find that the Christ in whose name you proclaim such unreasonable hate, may dethrone you and put another in your place who WILL serve him and not their own biases and traditions, traditions formed not from biblical scholarship, but from cultural views not upheld or backed up by scripture.

Be warned those who oversee the flock, the master is coming soon and he will judge you for what you are doing.

God is not, like you think, narrow minded, he has many beautiful creations, that are not like you. Being gay, is a gift from God, just as being straight is a gift, and finding someone to show that gift, that love that he has given to me, will be the outworking of that gift.

Advertisements

Struggling to be Christian.

Posted: December 27, 2012 in LGBT Isuses

I wish God would come down RIGHT NOW and sort out this whole Gay marriage thing. Because, frankly, I’m tired of it. If you want LGBT people in your church then you have to either accept them as they are or make it clear that your religion does not allow them in. Remember that, in doing so you may be shutting Christ out with them, after all, he spent his time with Tax Collectors and sinners like us.

The truth is, now when I read the idiotic statements of people who have, either never studied the subject in depths, or have simply gone by what their mother told them instead of researching it for themselves, I get angry, really angry, I feel that we are not given a chance to speak, just always they publish the views of the haters.

Here is just a few little snippets of information that might help make them more informed.

1. The King James Bible was commissioned by James the 1st, who is commonly known as a gay man. He had open gay relationships. Monogamous loving relationships. The translators wishing to try and get at him translated the verses in such a way as it outlawed homosexuality. To quote James, “I, James, am neither a god nor an angel, but a man, like any other. Therefore I act like a man and confess to loving those dear to me more than other men. You may be sure that I love the Earl of Buckingham more than anyone else, and more than you who are here assembled. I wish to speak in my own behalf and not to have it thought to be a defect, for Jesus Christ did the same, and therefore I cannot be blamed. Christ had John, and I have George.”

James was convinced that Jesus love for John was that of a gay relationship as we know it, I don’t know if I agree or not, but John does refer to himself as the disciple whom Jesus loved but that is agape love  so I don’t think you can take that inference from it.

2. God omitted a marriage service, in fact, to go further never even talked about it. He gave Noah instructions to build an ark, Moses instructions to build a tent, but never bothered to even talk about how to conduct a marriage service. In fact it seems to me there are more instructions on divorce than marriage, Jesus ofcourse said that divorce was given because of man’s hard hearts, I wonder if the same could be said of marriage.

3. 46% of marriages in the UK fail anyway. So what’s the big fuss, why not give LGBT people the chance to fail as well.

4. Gay people will get into loving, monogamous relationships, with, or without other peoples approval, they always have, and they always will, because love is far more powerful than hate. In fact those that hate us in the name of Christ, in fact just make us want to love even more. At the end of things, God will judge those who judge others with the same measure that they use to judge them.

Yeilding to the potter.

Posted: December 20, 2012 in Christian Ethics

Jeremiah 18 This is the word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord: “Go down to the potter’s house, and there I will give you my message.” So I went down to the potter’s house, and I saw him working at the wheel. But the pot he was shaping from the clay was marred in his hands; so the potter formed it into another pot, shaping it as seemed best to him. Then the word of the Lord came to me. He said, “Can I not do with you, Israel, as this potter does?” declares the Lord. “Like clay in the hand of the potter, so are you in my hand,Israel. If at any time I announce that a nation or kingdom is to be uprooted, torn down and destroyed, and if that nation I warned repents of its evil, then I will relent and not inflict on it the disaster I had planned. And if at another time I announce that a nation or kingdom is to be built up and planted, 10 and if it does evil in my sight and does not obey me, then I will reconsider the good I had intended to do for it. (NIV)
There is a lovely song called “The Potters Hand”, but it’s a dangerous song, it’s a song, that when sung 100% opens you up to being broken. Reshaped and moulded into your true self. But this moulding can only come through brokenness, the more I think about it the simpler it becomes. It’s as if unless you yield yourself to God to be broken, you cannot journey to being your true self.

Peter, for instance, the Rock, who denied Christ, he was broken, but became a centre piece of the church.

Abraham, with Isaac, was broken as he carried his Son to offer him as a sacrifice.

If you are feeling broken today, you may be in the process of being moulded. You may be well on the way to finding the true you. For me that brokenness also involved accepting my own sexuality and discovering how God, who lowers down unclean food for Peter to eat, is the master of who he accepts or rejects, and this acceptance or rejection is not based on how you look, your sexuality, your gender or feelings that you are in the wrong gender. It is based on you, just you, coming to Christ, Just as I am without one plea.

I’m still a work in progress. But I think, a better one.

I’ve found a pair of heroes!

Posted: December 17, 2012 in Uncategorized

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-essex-20758816

Well it looks like these guys are using their own money and time to challenge the government on the issue of gay marriage, they make some pretty good points actually and I will be supporting them in any way I can.

A hard day.

Posted: December 11, 2012 in LGBT Issues

Today it was announced that everyone except the Church of England will be able, if they wish to, let LGBT people get married.

I suppose it was to be expected that this big old dinosaur of a church would be unable to move from its staunch “Marriage is Magic and fixes relationships” view. It condemns people like me to being alone for the rest of my life or resigning from the church. Acknowledging that whilst I am not gay by choice. I have the choice to act or not act on my natural attractions, and I should choose to be single and alone.

I frankly cannot cope with that thought, this gives me two choices:-

a. I leave the church of England and find a church that will allow me to live as an openly gay person, without condemning me or making me feel second class.
b. I stay and try and fight it out, to show that LGBT people are not “the devil incarnate bent on destroying marriages”, or NAZI’s who want to somehow change society for the worse.

At the moment I’m feeling mostly A with a little bit of B.

Will sleep on it.

Christian Funerals for Gay people?

Posted: December 11, 2012 in LGBT Issues

One of the things I really struggle with this whole Gay Marriage issue is the fear I will not be able to have a Christian funeral. Although I don’t think it makes any difference to where you end up.  I worry that I might have to have a simple civil ceremony and that would be incredibly sad for someone who has tried so hard to serve God all their life.

It feels hard being a second class Christian as far as the church is concerned. I have actually withdrawn myself from taking communion. I’m a kind of all or nothing person. If I am not good enough to get married in church then why on earth would I be good enough to take communion with other Christians?

Although God does not deny me the Holy Spirit. Church itself by saying that I’m not good enough to be married in church, creates a second class of people, see, for people like me, Christ’s sacrifice on the Cross, according to the Church, is good enough to take my sin, but not good enough to open the door for things like Christian Marriage. It seems his once for all sacrifice was wasted on me perhaps. I’m sad about this, I’m sad when I watch others going for communion but not feeling able to.

I did have a lovely lady in church who said to me she felt upset that I was not sharing with them. I explained my position, that as a second class Anglican, it was not my place to take communion with those who were straight. I think she understood it.

http://www.nakedpastor.com/2012/12/07/heavenly-homosexuals/

I love this cartoon.

I think for me it just speaks about God’s grace and how we think we might have some idea of who will be in heaven when we get there. But delightfully, God has a way of reaching people we would never expect, across circumstances, across religious fervour of those who think they are serving him by rejecting people, of those who think by showing God’s love as conditional they are correct. It just amazes me how many LGBT people do have faith, do love Jesus and serve him much as I try to. But it is hard when those who are supposed to be encouraging you in your faith, especially some of the Anglican leadership, instead discourage you and for me sometimes make me feel like quitting church altogether.

At the end of the day, at the end of our lives, we have to look back and think honestly how we treated our fellow man. Regardless of our faith or atheism, as human beings we are, by our very nature, responsible for each other, because in being responsible for each other, we are merely being responsible for ourselves.

Sadly though to often we are only “loving those who love us”. I have many friends of other faiths, Muslims, Atheists, Agnostics, Jews who I love and respect as much as other Christians. My workplace is a fine example of a multi-cultural, multi-gender, multi-sexuality place. We don’t deny each other, but affirm each other, regularly on a festival, those of that faith will bring in some food to celebrate and we all do, there is never an angry word or a criticism of someone because of their sexuality and/or faith, nor an awkward denial, just acceptance that we are different and that is the best way to be.

We don’t have to fight each other all the time. The bible says Love covers over a multitude of sins. Have you noticed when someone is in love, they are blind to the blatantly obvious, their friends can see what a terrible person he is, but they just don’t get it. Love makes them blind. Sometimes, I wonder if God’s love is like that, he’s blinded by the sacrifice of his only Son. His love is unconditional, if only he could get through the religious rubbish that we put up as walls, instead of making our view of him clearer, it just gives us more blurred vision.

Jesus talked of coming to him like a child, perhaps that’s the key to the Kingdom. Not clever words or beautiful cathedrals, perhaps blind love for God. Simple love that does not come to God with a list of rules we’ve obeyed, points we’ve scored against others, but simply waiting.

I have waffled a bit in this piece, not stuck to one subject but drifted through some thoughts inspired by this cartoon.