I'm a Christian and I don't believe being gay is a sin. And I won't apologize for what I believe. For as long as I can remember, I have been told by nearly every Christian that I have ever met that being gay was a sin.
And gay people, at the least, should be kept at arm's length lest you succumb to "same-sex attraction" like them. And honestly, looking at the culture of where I was raised, it makes sense but that doesn't excuse it.
I grew up in a small, white, conservative farming town in the middle of the Bible belt so to say that I'm an anomaly would be the understatement of the century. But strangely enough, for as long as I can remember, I never really believed that being gay was a sin. I guess in my head, I could never understand how loving someone was wrong.
I vividly remember when Obama legalized gay marriage in all fifty states, a close family member saying "I don't hate gay people but I just don't understand why they need to get married". I remember getting angry because of course gay people want to get married; it's a fundamental right.
This was the very first issue that I ever expressed liberal opinions on and I should've known that it would spiral from there ;) Despite everything I was told, I always rejected the idea that gay people were somehow "wrong" for being attracted to the same sex. I found out as I got older that my opinion, although it came so naturally, was a very unpopular one in my area.
As I dove into Christianity and what it truly meant, I stumbled on so many amazing resources that dive into the excerpts in the Bible that people use to invalidate homosexuality (I will link them all below!).
I watched a Ted Talk about homosexuality and the Bible and I remember being so ridiculously happy that I could now be an open ally to the LGBTQ+ community and have the evidence to back up my opinion. And as I dove deeper into what I believed, I came across all of the horror stories of LGBTQ+ people at the hands of the church.
I won't say I was surprised, because I wasn't, but I was absolutely heartbroken. I have talked to so many of my friends, most of whom are in the LGBTQ+ community, and they have told me that I am the only Christian that they have ever met who not only accepted them for who they are but embraced them.
Y'all that broke my heart... into a million tiny pieces. What are we doing, as a church, if we are continuing to target and ostracize such a large part of our brothers and sisters? How did we get Jesus's message of love and acceptance so horribly wrong? How did we get to a place where we attempt to rationalize blatant acts of hatred because the victims were gay?
How about before we get hung up on the phrasing of verses that were written thousands of years ago and translated through multiple languages we just love people? How can we condone telling people that if they aren't straight they must remain celibate when intimacy was one of the first gifts that God gave mankind?
How hard is it to look to your neighbor and say "I love you" and mean it? How hard is it to tell someone that you see them and that their identity, struggle, and feelings are valid?
I can tell you, because I do it every day, that it is not hard; in fact, it is one of the easiest things that you can do. It's human nature to want to be seen, loved, and told that you are valid in every aspect of your identity.
Jesus's number one commandment was to love the Lord with all of your heart and your neighbor as yourself. And even if you're not a Christian, I think we can agree that love is what will change the world.
My mission in life is to be love to everybody that I meet. And contrary to what so many people believe, it's not just my faith that inspires this. It is my humanity that not only encourages me to love people but demands it.
And on a real level, nearly all of the best people I have ever met are in the queer community and they radiate the love and acceptance of Jesus more than most Christians that I know.
Also if you are in the Springfield area and looking for a loving church that will wholeheartedly embrace and love you, The Venues is where it's at. Send me a DM on Instagram and we can sit together.
Find an affirming church near you: https://www.gaychurch.org
Here are some resources on the LGBTQ+ community and the church:
What does the Bible say about homosexuality - https://youtu.be/XGNZQ64xiqo
Finding Identity: An LGBTQ Pastor's Journey - https://youtu.be/zWvLJNaVgrI
Matthew Vines: God and the Gay Christian - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HyVvjAdbaaQ
*buy the book here: https://www.amazon.com/God-Gay-Christian-Biblical-...
Why I chose my LGBTQ daughter over the Evangelical Church - https://youtu.be/rP01bH9Ljf4
God is Grey - This is one of my favorite resources for all issues relating to life and faith!
Girl Defined Clap-Back on Gay Christianity - https://youtu.be/OCv67uZYuRY
Paul & Morgan, Gay Christianity - https://youtu.be/6-3BgPNetio
The Trevor Project - https://www.thetrevorproject.org/