TO THOSE WHO PLAN TO MARCH IN “GOD HAS A BETTER WAY” or those that support the action, PLEASE read this:
How does the holy directive of “love your neighbor” and the “God Has a Better Way” intended goal of “reach out in love” translate to the glbt community? Well, I wondered so, I asked. For a 30 hour period, I linked and quoted the stated goals and intentions of GHABW from their own website. I found there is a universe of difference between intention of GHABW love goals and the message received. The entire 30 hour collection of comments from gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and straight believers and non-believers is below.
I have heard a few comments from people saying it is “free speech” to be able to march. My intentions here need to be made VERY clear. I am directing all this at the people BEHIND Brown and Engle, two men who I perceive as immovable . Their actions bring destruction. I would like those of you considering taking part in the march to READ the reactions below and think. Most of these people posting are glbt Christians. These are your brothers and sisters in the Kingdom. Many of the comments are straight people, like me who know the destruction about to be, once again, directed at the glbt community. Can you in good conscious do this to others?
My intent is to REDUCE the people behind Brown and Engle by warning you of the impact of the action. I would HOPE, as Christians , that the call to treat others in a Christlike fashion trumps the “need” for free speech. If you KNOW the message to the marginalized, and you KNOW the reaction and you apparently KNOW the call of your faith and you see the wildly disparate disconnect, you might pause and say “is this REALLY an action that expresses my faith?” I would hope the response would be NO. I can do all kinds of things legally as a Christian, BUT are they right and kind and caring of others? This one, no.
When Lou Engle went to Uganda and spoke out, he was “free” to do so as a person. But as a Christian? Look at the damage he did. I hope you see the point. I am trying to appeal to the Jesus in the marchers to reflect Him. Sure, they can do this legally, but is it in keeping with the Good News and the high call to “make disciples”?
If you have any doubt at all that the “God is love” message will be severely perverted in the action, please take the time to read the responses.
This(request to NOT march) isn’t about censorship or 1st Amendment rights but about understanding how words have consequences. My struggles with religion and being gay led my to a nasty suicide attempt. While I don’t blame my church or anyone else, I was sent to… a reparative group that blamed my “gayness” on my relationship with my father (we had a great relationship and the only negative thing was him dying when I was 17 – the nerve of him) and claimed that I could be delivered from the bondage of my homosexuality. I had to come to terms with the fact that God loves me UNCONDITIONALLY and that he created me to be who I am, not who some of His followers want me to be. If, as the statistics claim, the gay population of the U.S. is only 3-10 percent of the total population, why do religious leaders, elected officials, and political pundits exert so much time and effort on dealing with the “gay issue”? I have never really understood that. I also tire of hearing about the GLBT community wanting “special” rights. Do you know what I want? I want you to leave me ALONE! I want to be able to apply for a teaching position anywhere in the U.S. and not worry about losing my job for being gay or having to go back into the closet. I want to be able to have a family because yes I want children and no I don’t want children so I can wave my magic gay wand over them and turn them gay (my parents were straight by the way as are the parents 99.9 percent of the gay population). I think the issues of gay marriage and gays in the military are being used as political capital for the upcoming 2012 election. The GLBT community is to 21st Century conservatives what the Southern strategy was to Nixon in the late 60s. How many fund raising appeals for religious organizations tout their fight against the “radical homosexual agenda?” (Admittedly, I missed the meeting and did not get a copy of the agenda so if anyone could forward a copy to me I would be appreciative) I am 38 and am well past the fragile stage of my gay existence, but when I was a teen and struggling with the idea that I was gay and very different than most of the people I know, someone trying to force me into their Play Doh Fun Factory mold of who and what they think I should be, not to mention telling me how wrong, sinful, and dirty I am , would have been devastating. People have a right to express their opinion, but unless they have been living under a rock, they should understand that their opinion can and has KILLED!
Asking people to think about their actions before they do them is not taking away free speech; it is asking: Do you really understand the consquences for another by this action you are about to participate in? Do you understand you are hurting a child whose parents are gay? a child who you are putting into fear that somehow his/her parents are not equal to others in America? That you are hurting people who were born different than you? Who struggled young to find a means of accepting themself and a community to be a part of? that “gay pride” is a means of stating: I am not alone…. I won’t be attacked, stoned, beat up for being different than you; because there are others like me; and others speaking up for me. I can be safe here in America as long as a segement of society helps to protect my rights as a human.
Sand covered my toes; a bird was rescued from being tangled in shore grass; with waves crashing my feet my grandson and I watched a Bald Eagle fly in an overcast sky. We ran, we laughed, we lived, we loved…. All the best of God’s offering to mankind upon this earth.
For a moment all were equal, all were giving, all were accepting the differences of one another; all lifted their hands in praise to the King of Kings upon a Sunday morning at a beach side.
Yet, the sun set; the truck was packed, the road trip home began and where do I find myself… back in a world that God never meant to be… where one of his children has stones thrown upon him by another child of God; the stone throwers believing they are the instrument of God’s will…. peace?
God DOES have a better way, people…better than your way, which is narrow and self-centered. Look to God and see that He is infinite. Open. Bigger than anything that can fit inside your minds, and realize that His better way is not what you think it is. It is bigger than anything you can imagine.
God’s way is LOVE. And no human can place conditions on that LOVE. God doesn’t need bouncers at the door.
I am a Believer. I am transgender. God has told me, shown me, PROVEN to ME that He loves me, that He doesn’t want me to change, that He made me exactly as I am. Anyone believing I am transgender BY CHOICE has never talked with a trans person, or they would know that NOBODY chooses the pain or hatred or lack of understanding and love to which they are repeatedly subjected, most often by “christians”.
I spoke to my mother who is not affirming, about the “God Has A Better Way” people. I asked her if the people attending a gay pride event saw the shirts, what she thought the gay people would think. She said, they would think the …people wearing the sirts were crazy and would thumb their nose at them. I told her about Brown’s calling “Lisa” in quotes and not recognizing her as a woman. My mother said “so he is a narrow minded biggot and thinks his views are the only ones. And, you can tell him I said it”. Mind you, my mother does not agree or aprove of homosexuality, but says “as long as they leave Me alone, they can do what they want to”. And she said “if those people are going out in those shirts because of their preacher, they don’t have any more sense than he does”. (I read this to her to make sure it was correct).
I have known more than one gay man who was convinced that God really did hate him. That is SO heartbreaking and makes me simultaneously sad and angry.
The only agenda I see in this scenario is their agenda to judge. Mentally and spiritually, I’ve been where they are, and the ‘better way’ God had for me was to stop lying to myself and the world around me and accept the way God made me.
I would thank them for the prayers and water, and would ask that their “reaching out with love” include listening and getting to know us. Let’s just start by listening to each other with genuine respect. Maybe set up some “dialogue tents” where we get to know each other face to face and eye to eye.
God’s way never involves shame at who one is. That’s a start.
You know, I’m continually amazed at all the people who act as if they speak for God. One can only assume they’re getting direct memos from God about how much he agrees with them about the LGBTs.
Seriously, don’t these people have better things to do with their time? With all the wars, famine, poverty, corruption, etc etc etc in the world… crashing a pride event should be at the bottom of the list. Go out and help people and leave us alone!
I would feel angry. I don’t go busting in on Christianists’ church services to give them my two cents. I know these people think they have all the answers, but they really need to back off. I don’t want to hear from them at Pride events. I don’t want to hear from them at the grocery store parking lot. I don’t want them knocking on my door at all hours and leaving trash when I don’t answer. Unless they’re welling to talk to me as an equal, unless they’re welling to hear what I have to say in addition to sharing their own thoughts, unless they’re able to accept that they don’t know everything, most espcially about MY life, then they should shut up, mind their own business and leave me alone.
You know, if we wanted to hear their junk-science, bible-error attempts to save us, I’d go to their church to hear it. And they’re double-stupid, because their tactics only equate their Jesus with their anti-gay message and ENSURE none of us will go near either one.
Please tell Michael Brown that there are Bible-believing Christians in Charlotte who do not wish for them to do this, and that we do not believe this is an expression of God’s love for queer folks.
It only makes people hate Christianity when Christians pull this kind of shit. What do you know about OUR love? You don’t allow yourself to learn any truths about it!
”reach out with love to those in attendance while resisting the agenda” Hmm. The only LGBTI agenda I know of is our desire to be treated equally and not to be denied the rights the straight take for granted and or claim for themselves. Maybe LGBTI people can wear T-shirts the say “OUR AGENDA IS NOT TO TREAT YOU THE WAY YOU TREAT US.”
My opinion is that if God really had a “better way,” God sure set up an awful marketing campaign. Are they trying to scare us into heterosexuality? Kill us with kindness so that we turn straight out of guilt? Truly a “wolf in sheep’s clothing” if I ever saw one. I think I’d prefer the predictable wackiness of the Phelps clan.
People completely miss the point of “PRIDE”. They think we are pushing the “gay agenda” whatever that means! You can’t turn someone gay anymore than you can turn someone straight! We just want equal rights which is why we have these events. Good grief, for someone who claims to have such “LOVE” for the GLBTI community- he has no clue!
we do not celebrate the fact that some people choose to surgically mutilate their God-given organs and must take hormones for the rest of their lives just to be at peace with themselves…” As a transsexual Christian woman, I also don’t celebrate the choices I had to make, but I am grateful I was able to make them none-the-less. Your assertion that gender reassignment surgery is mutilation is sadly misplaced and by extension, using the the same logic, one could argue that all surgeries are acts of mutilation of some God-given “tissue.” I’m sure the cancer patient who has a leg, a breast, a lung, or some other part of their body removed is grateful to the doctors who have given them another chance at life, even if there are life-long consequences. I am grateful to God to live in a day and age when medical science not only understands gender dysphoria, but also offers choices that can help the quality of a person’s life, as it has mine.
This is so dangerous!! They are going to magnify the damage the church has already done. I’m sorry, but they are going to attack!! (not love)
I can’t believe that they think this kind of event will demonstrate compassion and love to the LGBT community. I would suggest that they become genuine friends with a gay person and love them without ever saying a negative thing about their orientation. Then, maybe, the gay person will believe the claims of “compassion” and “love”. Plus, maybe the Charlotte Christians will realize that there doesn’t need to be a “better” way. It’s just a “different” way.
I can’t believe that they think this kind of event will demonstrate compassion and love to the LGBT community. I would suggest that they become genuine friends with a gay person and love them without ever saying a negative thing about their orientation. Then, maybe, the gay person will believe the claims of “compassion” and “love”. Plus, maybe the Charlotte Christians will realize that there doesn’t need to be a “better” way. It’s just a “different” way.
You know, maybe it is time that moderate and progressive Christians start labeling these people for who they really are: extremists. Their theology of an angry, wrathful God that hates and tortures forever those that disobey him, and a God that “instructs” them to essentially do the same, is nothing short of extremism…even terrorism. How is this any different than the “cosmic spiritual war” theology than those that smashed planes into the twin towers, or the guy who killed so many in Oslo, Norway? The only difference I see is that these people are giving their victims a drink of water before they “shoot” them.
Certainly these GHABW folks gather and hand out love and water outside of Dunkin Donuts and pray for these sinners to turn from gluttony!
I would say that no matter what their activities are—-singing, praying, lying still and silent on the ground—–if they are surrounding the premises with their bodies, I would feel threatened, and would say so to local authorities. It’s not like me to call upon governemnt for such things, but this time I probably would.
(Real) Christians treat others as they want to be treated. Apparently this misguided group has no interest in sharing the love of Jesus. They are mindless sheep following an ignorant, bigoted shepherd.
This is hurtful, plain and simple. I KNOW, down to my blood and bones, that being GLBT is a fundamental and unchangeable part of who i am—biologically, psychologically. IT’S WHO I AM, and i can no more change it than i could change my eye color, my age, my race. But, as i so painfully discovered, i CAN change my religion. So, if you force me to choose between what i can’t change and what i can, what else can i do?
what if we stopped viewing others as projects that needed to be fixed or sinners that needed some saving, and instead viewed them as children of God. Maybe we could invest time in their lives. Maybe we could get to know them and encourage them instead of beating them up with our superiority. Maybe we could even learn from them instead of insisting we always be teachers.
You can’t love something you’re resisting. It’s a contradiction in terms. You can’t shake hands with a closed fist.
We don’t care about how pure you think your motives are. They don’t trump the fear and distrust you are causing with your words and actions, which quite honestly, comprise nothing more than spiritual masturbation in public. You are automatically creating a wall between your message (which has NOT been asked for) and your hearers by doing what you’re doing, and megaphones and matching T-shirts only add to the climate of fear you’re creating. If you cared about how we felt about your message, you wouldn’t do what you’re doing, so please don’t pretend you love us. You don’t. You don’t care about our feelings at all. We’re just an easy target for your inflated spiritual ego to beat up on.
You wouldn’t like it if I walked into your church, pulled my pants down and took a dump on the platform. So please don’t do the same to us. We give you the courtesy to worship freely 52 weeks of the year without ever hassling you. So, on our one day of the year to celebrate our community, please leave us alone.
These people are nothing more than bullies. I never take a group and walk into their churches and tell them what I think of them. They are pushing people too far with all this behavior and one day someone will get pushed for the last time too far and something bad will happen. And they will have caused it with their bullying.
First I must say thank you for being who you are and for saying and doing what you are doing! The world would be so almost heavenly if we all came to each other with love and not condemnation.
To answer your question though, my response to his message would not very good. His message is really a devisive one of either gay or Christian, not gay and Christian. If I read it right he said that although we kind of acknowledge that we have hang-ups about gays and lesbians and we sort of know that isn’t very Christian of us, we sure as hell think those folks “pushing the gay agenda” are bad and evil and unworthy of God’s love. Well as a Lesbian 50 years of age, in a relationship for 22 years, and as a gay Christian, I think and hope and yes even pray that we can have it all! I oddly have never felt so hopeful, because if we as a country could come together and elect a Black man as president perhaps we can achieve equality.
God IS love and I think God would be more than a little pissed that people, and especially leaders of his church, are preaching a message of hate! God bless you and I hope you make it down there to give them your message! Thanks again!
I am confused. It seems to me like Michael Brown wants to confuse everyone and be sly in his attacks of the LGBT community. I also enjoyed his trans misogyny it bugged me as a Trans woman it really made me want to sit him down and tell him! And of course he blurts out facts like he knows what he’s talking about when he hasn’t a clue! I celebrated my one year anniversary of living authentically yesterday. Throughout that year I’ve had ups and downs and Christians have embraced and rejected me. Today I mentioned to the members of my Church how thankful I am to have a loving am welcoming Church family to be a part of that journey and loving me as I am NOT trying to change me or attack who God made me to be even if they may not understand or agree. they STILL celebrated with me! I don’t appreciate anyone telling me that God has a better way in a context that is only used to change or “fix” me into what they think God wants for me. What about what I have come to know God wants for me?
It is patronizing and it is NOT love. Love is accepting a person as they are. That’s what God does; that’s who God is. This complete and utter moron (sorry, but my patience has run very thin) is judging something he doesn’t understand and wishing that others conform to his own image, and ignoring whether or not they are conforming to His image; which is LOVE.
What are these people thinking? They think resisting who I am is showing me love? No, it is showing utter disdain for who and what I am, and guess what; for my Maker, and His work as well! They are not serving Jesus, they are serving their own ignorance in this; they would do better to stay home and pray- for their own hearts to be right with God, and to seek out God’s heart on this matter-and when they have allowed God to deal with and transform their own hearts, THEN (and only then) go out to the gay community and offer them REAL love and REAL compassion – anything else they do will only cause more damage and it sickens me that they may not “get” this and go ahead and make an idiot of Jesus out there to those who don’t know the real Jesus, and turn even more people off than the millions who have already been shooed away from the REAL Good News.
I can’t agree more with everything everyone said! Makes me happy and proud to be a gay Christian. You may disagree with me here but although I am a Christian I don’t believe the rest of the world is going to hell if they aren’t a Christian. I know that’s a bit off topic but I thought I would throw that out there. But the one thing I wanted to add was if you are a Christian that believes that Christ is the only way to be saved shouldn’t you be doing everything you can to welcome the gay person into the church and into Christ’s love rather than spending so much time preaching hate? I thank God I can separate the hateful messages and see and seek God’s love.
For myself, I respectfully disagree with you Mr. Brown. How can you love, the LGBT community if you do not celebrate who they are? I cannot believe that you would say that Truth is your ultimate goal, because if it was…you’d take the time to get to know those of us who are Gay and Christian.
I am not saying you don’t need to be out there supporting the LGBT community, but start celebrating who we are in God’s eyes rather than your own.
Kathy Verbiest Baldock You are an angel for what you do. Here is my response to what you asked:
This anti-Pride protest (Which it is regardless of what Mr. Brown calls it), hurts. Personally it turns me off of Christianity in general. I am grateful that I do live in an area that is so welcoming and accepting of the LGBT community, but not everyone can or does. What has happened to Christ? What has happened to us as Christians?
I wish there was a way for me to get down to Charlotte and show Love. Since I cannot I’m going to be praying for the Pride Committee, and for those who are marching on both sides.
Bottom line for me… ANGRY! (and severe ANXIETY AND PANIC) I know where I’ve been and I KNOW what if feels like to be like a wounded animal and shoved into a corner emotionally only to be attacked more. Once they batter you down and you break with emotion, they patronize you with “see the Holy Spirit is working on your heart right now!!” When all you are thinking is “GET ME OUT OF HERE!!!”
BULL CRAP!! So you are telling me that this FEAR and REJECTION I am feeling is from JESUS??? Oh no no no no no, my friends. I have come to learn in my life- that is a BOLD faced lie from the pit of hell! I have changed so much and have become a STRONG person and have been able to tell the lies from the truth. I no longer have fear in my life…
but I am VERY afraid for my brothers and sisters who are searching for who they are. They are vulnerable and very bitter toward Jesus and the church. Swarming them from every angle is going to slice open those oh so fragile wounds that so many already have.
NO ONE should feel they are not enough! NO ONE should feel as if they are “freaks” or unworthy of Jesus love unless they CHANGE. The title says just that “God has a better way”
It is NOT by acts of works that we are saved but through grace alone.
LEAVE THEM ALONE! They can all be bought with the blood of Jesus RIGHT WHERE THEY STAND!! JUST AS THEY ARE!! No change required!
However, I must say that whatever damage is done- Jesus ALWAYS calls His children back. If Jesus has a plan- He will see it through no matter what!
I pray they are covered with His love and don’t buy into the agenda.
People like this make me appreciate the Westboro Baptist Church. At least they say how they really feel. People like Michael Brown cover their very real homophobia under piles of sugar and hope people won’t notice. Thankfully, those who are perceptive can smell it from a mile away!
“We are here today to reach out and resist…” What? Stop right there…how is that even possible? You will do one or the other. You can’t do both!
“We do not celebrate the fact that some people believe they are women trapped in men’s bodies” Just as I do not celebrate the fact that you don’t understand the reality of gender issues, Michael Brown. (Same goes for sexual orientation issues, he is equally misinformed.)
“We acknowledge the fact that homophobia is alive and well in some churches, and we renounce and repudiate that hateful and destructive attitude.” Yes, through your totally non-homophobic crashing of gay pride with your shaming message of God’s disapproval. And of course, it’s not homophobic, since you said it isn’t, so that makes it completely great. Oh, wait, no, it doesn’t actually work that way! That’s right, I remember now, in order for it to not be homophobic it has to…. actually not be homophobic!
This man is acting as a wolf desperately trying to wear sheep’s clothing. Thankfully, we have genuine people like Kathy who can stand up against him. I will be praying. All the best, Kathy, and may the Holy Spirit speak through you so that you can combat this man’s deceit.
That greeting comes from a very happy, yet sometimes angry woman. Oh, allright, I guess if you wish you can call me a transwoman, if you dont mind me calling you a cisman or cis woman. How about you just call me Kynthia ? I love that name. Its the name of the Goddess Artemis (twin sister of Apollo – she was the Goddess of the hunt) And I chose it for myself before I fully knew what it meant.
I have been transitioning for over two years now. It isnt always easy, it can even be downright heartbreaking. I mean, one of the things a transperson learns is how to lose – everything – and forge ahead anyway. You lose your love, your home, your family, your job, your career (when your career is theater and you were a male lead in most plays – well, transition and you cant even do lighting any more) Well – everything.
Am I complaining ? no, well, maybe a little. But, overall, I am in a far better place now. Did you know, for instance, us transfolk have a 50% suicide rate ! Yup, that means if you know two of us ? chances are one of us is going to swallow the barrel of a pistol and pull the trigger. Or hang ourselves, or take a fist full of pills. Lots of ways, but one of us will be dead maybe even both – its a funny way odds work out. When the military reached the SHOCKING number of 11% suicide rate, it was an epidemic. There were hotlines established, the VA started screening more and more patients for possible suicidal tendancies. I say GREAT ! I am a veteran myself (Infantry, yup – please dont start with the Max Klinger jokes – understand I am a trained killer) And would prefer not killing myself (today – had you asked me two months ago I had actually written up my exact detailed plan to walk in front of a moving train for a death hug.) Yet no one but us transpeople and our loved ones seem to even be aware of this shocking number. Or, maybe because it is a good way to cut the population of us freaks in half ? Considering that politics are driven by straight white males who are threatened by our existance ? Yeah, I can see that working out just fine. For them.
I get called names, stared at, asked the most intrusive and rude questions about my sexual parts. And people think this behavior is okay because, on the average, transpeople arent known for kicking someones rude ass. We really arent. Hell, the majority of us are women. There are men too. Females who transition to males. I personally know two of them and love them both as if they were my own brothers. Oh, I know one more – my husband. See, I said I am a transwoman, well, my husband is a transman. Yeah, that means we are a straight couple. When we get married the wedding license will give my name as bride and his name as husband. Oh, and another hot fact – I am adopting his son. The biological parent left him. So I am going to be a wife and mother. I have been dreaming and praying and depressed over that since I was 13. Well, 40 yrs later (yes, I am 53) I am becoming the impossible – a wife and mother. Thank you Dylan, I love you my beautiful husband. What is it with God and the number 40 ? 40 days and 40 nights it rained, 40 yrs the children of Isreal roamed the desert – 40 yrs it takes mr Almighty God who created the entire world in 6 days to make me a mother ? 40 yrs ? Thats okay God, you had your reasons and I am greatful and loving you for even thinking of me. Bless you heavenly mother. (yeah, it helps me to think of God in a feminine role – suit yourself but God has no actual gender)
And despite the fact we are transfolk – we will enjoy the same rights to marriage as all those straights who are afraid thier marriages will deteriorate because us homos are wedded legally. And the marriage is recognized by the federal government because it involves one (!) male and one (1) female. Whoopise – Geo W Bush didnt see THAT little nugget coming !
So, I dont pass, I get harrased by security guards when I go potty ini public places and have to call the cops on them. Big ripping deal. Im me, take it or leave it. Long after the debate dies I will continue to be a mom, I will continue to be a wife (Us transfolk also seem to be VERY loyal to our parnters) i will continue to be a feminist woman who will champion the causes her own mother fought for when she was a young woman.
Above all, I will do FINALLY what my daddy told me “This above all: To thine own self be true” I will be me.
May the Lord bless you and keep you, may he make his face to shine upon you, may he lift up his contenance upon you, and give you peace.
As a straight Christian, a married woman, a parent, a social worker, a preacher’s kid and someone who works in the church, I want his followers to know that they are not going to encounter a crowd of damaged, broken, pained, confused, wounded, cowering, desperate people longing to find “a better way.” They are going to encounter human beings that will be functioning on a continuum from those proud of their God-given sexual orientation and living in a close relationship with the sacred (it’s a PRIDE parade, people, PRIDE!) to those resentful, no, furious with the church and its followers for shoving them to the margins of society, either with hate-filled rants or with supposed peaceful and loving “evangelizing, singing and praying.”
I know they think they are better than the hate-filled Westboro Baptist Church/Fred Phelps Christians, but those marching in the pride parade are not looking for a different way. These rants and these peaceful/pious/condescending demonstrations are BOTH harmful to the soul and to the psyche and have no place coming from the mouths of those professing to be the hands of Christ in the world.
They are not going to be welcomed with open arms by the pride marchers and they will most likely be seen a hypocrites. They are NOT “honoring the Lord in Spirit” when they send their message that LGBT people are not accepted by them or by God as they go about living just the way God created them. Jesus said “WHOSOEVER,” and they are changing Jesus’ word of welcome from “all” to “certain people.” You don’t get to change the message to fit YOUR agenda.
They are mutating the true Christian message of radical love and acceptance with their holier-than-thou counter-march and this makes me angry as a Christian! They do not speak for me. And there is no gay agenda other than human beings wanting to be treated equally. Can’t they just let gay people of any or no faith negotiate their own relationship with God without the insertion of their “solution?”
I wish I could fly you out there! Best of luck with the writing!
Me too. How can they assume our reaction would be favorable? Tell them to turn the whole message around and see how they would like it if we were the ones giving them the same message! And you know what hurts too? He sounds like he is saying that families with single parents (either by choice or by circumstances) are less than and also those families who choose to adopt (either by choice or by circumstance) are less than. Truly: WWJD!
I got as far as this: “….we do not celebrate the fact that two men or two women cannot reproduce their own unique offspring…” and was too gobsmacked to go any further.
For the record, I am straight, and born again Christian. My parents are heterosexual.
I am adopted.
I’ll let that sink in.
I. Am. Adopted.
My brother is the biological child of my parents. My Mom miscarried repeatedly before carrying my brother to term, and then almost died giving birth to him. My parents were told to not have any more biological children. I was adopted when I was about three months old. I have NEVER been the “adopted child”. I have, my whole life, been simply “daughter” to my parents and “sister” to my brother. Any time I’ve had a person ask if I’ve ever wanted to find my “real” parents, my answer is, “I don’t have to find them. I grew up with them. I know exactly where they are. I suspect you’re referring to my ‘biological’ parents. My REAL parents are the ones who raised me and loved me unconditionally.”
I take HUGE, *HUGE* offense at Michael Brown and his group dragging adoption into their “reasoning” behind being hateful towards the LGBT community. I am forced to conclude that in their eyes my brother IS my parents’ “own unique offspring” and I am…what? Chopped liver? Not quite as good or worthy? I live in Colorado. I just did a very cursory search on the numbers of kids in foster care who DESPERATELY want families of their own. I came up with 76 in Colorado alone. Frankly, that number sounds really low. Under the guise of being “loving”, this hateful, hateful group is literally throwing these 76 kids under the bus by making this kind of an idiotic statement about biological children. The kids in foster care have already been rejected by family after family. Yet it’s better for them to remain in foster care than be placed with an LGBT couple that desperately, desperately wants them? I know not all LGBT people want children, just as not all straight people do. However, I personally know two LGBT couples that have adopted a some of these “unadoptable” kids, and they have amazing, loving, WONDERFUL families. Their kids are blessed beyond description to have these couples as parents. That’s not to even mention the single LGBT people who go through hell on earth in their attempts to adopt. They are WONDERFUL, LOVING people who want to provide better lives for these kids. Period. It’s nothing more obscene or nefarious than that.
Michael Brown and his group, I’m sure, would eagerly identify themselves as being “pro-life”, yet this statement of, “we do not celebrate the fact that two men or two women cannot reproduce their own unique offspring,” sounds hellishly close to enforced eugenics to me. Are they willing to stoop THAT low in order to make their hateful, narrow-minded point? Apparently they are.
The Jesus I know and love and worship would have NO part of this hateful mindset.
So the statement says, “We must admit and overcome the fact that we’re disgusted by the LGBTs and then love them enough to approach and tell them, lovingly, that they’re confused and God can change them.” Am I reading that correctly?
I would say – as a non-believer, that I find the phrase mildly offensive because of it’s implications. One of the things I never got as a churched-kid was how people could worship a God with mysterious ways and then purport to know what those are. When I see “God Has A Better Way” what I really hear in my head is, “We want you to be like us, but we know we can’t sell you on that alone.” They don’t care if I’m happy as long as my soul is on track to meet their understanding of the bible. Free will to me is just that – free. I’m not trying to make them stop believing in God. I’m not trying to make them LGBT. If they believe who they are is ok, I’m fine with that, as long as they’re not acting in ways that hurt other people. In the end, I’d just walk by and ignore it. I guess my final thought would be this: The concept is just hokey and seems like it is meant to unite one group by creating an impossible challenge – trying to change/fix/repair/”transfo
rm” the LGBT community. As long as that’s their goal, they’ll ALWAYS have work to do, because that’s NEVER going to happen.
I looked at this website in depth and couldn’t figure out the answer to “what is the better way” ??? What could be better than being who we are all created to be? The website tried to say “this is in love” but I just see it as another hateful way to say “you’re wrong with who you are created to be”…I’m straight BUT my heart just ACHES for our friends…….I keep thinking if I lived in a GLTB accepted world and straight people were shunned, bullied, etc…..and I would be SO frustrated because I’m straight..I’d just want to scream…and very loudly…… “that’s all I know how to be=straight-because that’s who I am”….and people were ALWAYS trying to tell me that isn’t “good enough”…….I can NOT imagine what our GLTBQ friends go through…..
If I were in attendance at that pride parade and the GHABW group showed up, I would feel invaded and insulted. I would also feel threatened, even if all they were doing was just handing out waters, praying, and preaching. Their presence would feel like an attack, and indeed it would be an attack of sorts, and I would fear that a fight of at least words and very possibly fists or more, to break out. I would fear most that it would be started by one of my side- a LGBT member, since it is a much more personal and emotionally charged issue for us. In fact I may even feel I have to leave and I would hate to, since it would feel like a win for their side. But they would have ruined my party: I was celebrating myself and my sexuality in a positive way and they came and starting preaching how I was wrong for being the way I was. It would no longer be a fun and positive day, and would feel like a hostile and possibly dangerous situation for me to remain in. For example, you don’t see the Buddhists or the Hindus crashing Easter parades, preaching their own beliefs to the Christians. When there is a public event of celebration planned that you don’t agree with, then you don’t go to it. That is why the information on these events is publicly available way in advance to the event- so that the disagree-ers can stay home or plan their own thing the street or two over- not so they can try to control and overtake the first celebration and turn it into their own.
I don’t have a whole lot to say about the whole thing, but here are a couple of random thoughts. If someone from that group offered me water, I honestly would wonder if it had somehow been tainted and would decline to accept it. In contrast, an LGBT-affirming church has passed out water at Pride parades in RI for many years, and I have gladly accepted it. Secondly, if you’re writing something and hoping to have it published in that area, here’s a question that I think is helpful to ask: if you believe that people can change their sexual orientation, would you be okay with your daughter or son marrying someone who said that they used to be gay and aren’t anymore? Other than that, my sense is that perhaps some from that group are hoping to incite confrontations so that they can then crow about those evil homos even though they were the ones who actually picked the fight.
I Don’t think that what they are doing would move me any more than the folks that hold
Signs that say u are going to Hell. Wonder what they would do if gay Christians followed them and passed out information,hugs and prayers right after people were given there stuff
God has a better way to what exactly? I first thought they wanted to tell gays one more time, that they were wrong, bad, etc.. we have all heard the story….Then he said some things about the church not loving gays. So then I thought, OH God has a better way for them to learn to love others that they do not understand, and that is cool….Then I read on. I was right the first time…However, the “gay agenda” is pretty vague. Do they mean that gays want to marry,? Because I don’t think gays want to take over the world. And then back to what is God’s better way? We are all equal at the foot of the cross…. The better way Jesus talked about: Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength, and love your neighbor as yourself…..Maybe if we ALL put down the gay and straight agenda (and we all know there is a straight agenda) and focused on knowing and serving God above all things, (even orientation and behaviors), we could find the truth…God Does have a better way. Himself…
Lynn’s Mom says
Love *is* the answer, we are told so in the New Testament after the Dispensation of Grace has been perfected through Christ and we are only called to follow two commandment, to love the Lord our God with all of our heart and soul and to love our neighbor as ourselves: “43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46 If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47 And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? 48 Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. Matthew 5:43-48 NIV (The word “perfect” in the original Greek actually means “mature”, so in other words, grow up!)
Once the dispensation of Grace was made perfect through Christ, we were no longer called to judge, because in judgment there is fear and in fear there is punishment…(There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. 1 John 4:18 NIV) “1 “Do not judge, or you too will be judged. 2 For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”Matthew 7:1,2 NIV –We have been called to love only. Period.
I can respect your intent, but not your actions. I can understand resisting some of the things mentioned in your note to the press- some things, I think, are done in very poor judgment-, but to wholly resist gay activism – which amounts to keeping GLBT’s as second class citizens and denying their reality about who they are, is wrong, and not helpful, and builds no bridges only adds to wall-building. Moreover, it comes off as condescending, and that is repulsive. I do believe you are well meaning, as so many are, but well meaning, but uninformed people have caused incredible damage to the GLBT community- many who also happen to be Christians- though you may not be able to accept that. Furthermore, you can make your stand without accosting the entire gay community, and you can adjust your stand to be against only what appears to be reverse discrimination or just very poor judgement in how to reduce homophoboism in schools, but fight WITH them for equal protection under the law, fight WITH them in their civil right to marry. Your apparent mission is to keep them down, oppressed and to shame them into being something they can never be. Gay people do not turn straight. Bi people can ACT straight, and so can gay people, but in the case of gay people, it is mere pretending, even if it is with all that is within them to make it otherwise. Gay people do not turn straight, and if God cannot, or will not change that reality, then how can you stand there and say the God has a better way for them?
A lot of the people who attend Pride probably feel judged by friends, family and their church, so seeing this group offering their “love” at Pride–an event where people are invited to celebrate their individuality without shame–may bring …a lot of volatile emotions to the surface. I’m guessing that Michael Brown doesn’t care about that, and I suspect if any of them react to him in a negative way, he’ll use it to advance his image as victim and martyr.
I can just hear MB saying something that basically boils down to this: “Poor little me, I just wanted to offer them my love. I go to where they are, get up in their faces and tell them they’re going to hell if they don’t believe what I tell them to believe and if they don’t do what I tell them to do because I love them.”
There is even A BETTER WAY and that’s the way of Jesus (my Lord) who loves me sooo much that He walks with me every minute of my day and night; and I am also a gay man 😉
Jeremy W says
Another important point you have to consider in this whole thing is the fact that when people ask why the younger generation is so turned off by the idea of church, they respond the reason is the church’s treatment of the GLBT community, and yet the fundamentalist church continues to just bat that away and continue with the actions like this
I am so glad I met Jesus before I even heard of brown and his better way.
Some thoughts on the Charlotte Pride response:
“We can send a wave of encouragement to our brothers and sisters across the nation.” I thought they recognized the hateful response of some in the church and the need to love the LGBT community. If they are trying to encourage/be there for the LGBT community, then why are they worried about encouraging brothers and sisters around the nation? (Obviously, they are not.)
“…reach out with love to all in attendance while resisting the agenda.”. What agenda? The Charlotte Pride Festival (official events page) says, “Pride Charlotte, which attracts thousands each year, is the culmination of a week-long slate of events highlighting the social, cultural, ethnic, artistic and political diversity of the metro Charlotte area’s LGBT community.” Is that the agenda they are resisting? How is it loving to resist a group’s desire to celebrate who they are?
I’ve never been to a gay pride festival…my partner and I met on an online ex-gay support group years ago, while on opposite sides of the country. We identified as Christian, not gay, although we were always gay. It took a long time, esp. for me, to come to terms with my faith and my sexual orientation. Last year I joined One Voice, Charlotte’s LGBT chorus, and I found out that I had some residual shame. I though I really was okay with being gay but I was a little hesitant to invite friends to the shows. I grew. My partner and I were out to many, but not all. On the 10-year anniversary of our civil union, July 2nd, we officially came out on FB and made a decision to be ourselves from that point on. (I taught middle school in a conservative town and did not feel safe to be myself. When I resigned from that position, I felt free to join One Voice and realized how much I had been living in fear.)
One Voice is singing during Pride, and to tell you the truth, I’m kind of scared. I don’t need to be, but it just hurts to not be accepted. And that group absolutely makes me feel unloved. They should be my brothers and sisters in Christ, but I doubt I would feel any family connection. And I’m ‘ve never been to a gay pride festival…my partner and I met on an online ex-gay support group years ago, while on opposite sides of the country. We identified as Christian, not gay, although we were always gay. It took a long time, esp. for me, to come to terms with my faith and my sexual orientation. Last year I joined One Voice, Charlotte’s LGBT chorus, and I found out that I had some residual shame. I though I really was okay with being gay but I was a little hesitant to invite friends to the shows. I grew. My partner and I were out to many, but not all. On the 10-year anniversary of our civil union, July 2nd, we officially came out on FB and made a decision to be ourselves from that point on. (I taught middle school in a conservative town and did not feel safe to be myself. When I resigned from that position, I felt free to join One Voice and realized how much I had been living in fear.)
One Voice is singing during Pride, and to tell you the truth, I’m kind of scared. I don’t need to be, but it just hurts to not be accepted. And that group absolutely makes me feel unloved. They should be my brothers and sisters in Christ, but I doubt I would feel any family connection. And I’m tired of having to feel like I have to prove that I’m a Christian. Sometimes I don’t even want to be associated with Christians. And then I find people like you and I feel like I can breathe again. So thanks for the work that you do. It means so much.
Series on Pride Charlotte :