Last night's general session made me a little uncomfortable. Not because of the environment, room layout, or they way it was done (three speakers in a 1-by-1 format w/ discussion) but because of the topics. It was a bit of a stretch for my Midwest, conservative, holiness upbringing. The Lord and a few of you know I have been on quite the faith journey recently dealing with allowing myself to being more open to ideas that are different to me. I don't want to say that I have been closed minded, but maybe I have been more than I wanted to. It is just a journey I am on, and the guys who are with me felt even more uncomfortable, but that's okay right? That is how we move forward on our faith journeys...even when it is agreeing to disagree.
With that said, I didn't really have any issues with the first and third speakers, but where I wrestled the most came with Andrew Marin, who spoke on understanding and building bridges with the gay and lesbian community. Now, I didn't have issues with what he was saying, but I had issues because this is an area that God is working on in my life right now...because I am living it. No, not because I am a homosexual or struggle with this, but I have people in my life who are and I am really wrestling with how to relate to them. My traditional conservative upbringing says-"Love the sinner, hate the sin...but just don't let them in our church." (my assumption not an actual statement). I really sincerely believe that at least one of these people really does love the Lord and wants to serve Him, but in my head I wrestle with how can he have a relationship with God and still wrestle with it. The answer is I don't know, and Marin at least introduced me to the idea of working with those that are in this situation.
In addition to this whole idea, he challenged us to consider being the ones who would bridge the gap with those who wrestle with homosexuality. At our school right now, "bicuriousity" and homosexuality seem to be the "in" thing, and yet no one really wants to address the issue or work with these students. It's taboo. Last night, I really began to wrestle with whether or not God may want to use me in this capacity, but what will that look like in my small conservative town. What will that mean for me? What will that mean for these students? How will we get past what I know will be said in the community about it? I just don't know...and maybe it was all just gas from the supper? I don't know, but I am open to what God wants to do and praying He will show me...will you pray with me?