Friday, June 1, 2012

Coming Out

      Three months ago I opened Quiet, my yoga/massage studio, as a faith based studio for people to come and find a still space to grow their faith. As a Messianic Jew (A person of Jewish heritage who follows Jesus) I labeled Quiet a Judeo Christian faith studio. So far, so good...this is who I am this is what I am offering. There is no doubt in my mind that my Guru is Jesus and my path is to follow Him therefore the label made sense. I am not, however, of the school that my way is the only way. I pray in Jesus' name because that is what is in my heart and Who I follow. But, wow the baggage that comes with the Christian label had begun to get heavy. And for a moment I considered discarding the label entirely.

     I believe God is love and if we are emulating God we are loving everyone. Not liking everyone, mind you....but loving them to the best of our abilities. If we are putting out a genuine effort to love God will step in and help us. So, the homophobia I see coming from the church is breaking my heart. It is not clear to me that being gay is a sin. There are some very esteemed scholars that seem to believe that the scriptures that we interpret as "don't be gay" actually say "don't be a pedophile". I am not a Greek or Hebrew scholar so I really have nothing to add to this specific conversation, except that I find it very clear in scripture where God says "don't judge". So, why all the hate? Is it fear? A wise person once explained to me  that sexuality is a continuum. Very few of us are 100% attracted to only the opposite gender. When we feel a moment of attraction or admiration for someone of our own gender does it scare us into homophobia? Whatever the reasons for the hate it has to stop. Spirituality is measure relationally and when we are hating a huge section of the population for whatever reason out spirituality is muddied and bloodied. Sometimes literally. When we have to make hate a crime it is time to take a long hard look at ourselves.

     This issue was big enough for me that several times I wrote (and deleted) an entire blog on why I was no longer affiliating with organized religion and why I was no longer going to use the word Christian in describing myself. But I deleted it because I eventually recognized the same judgement and fear that I was writing about was in me only it was pointed in another direction at the gay bashers.  Point a finger at someone else and there are always four fingers pointing back at you. I also deleted it because I am a follower of Christ and like it or not that makes me a Christian. But as a Christian, Messianic Jew, or Child of God....whatever the label the job is the same. Spread love, be love, bring light to the darkness. So, to this purpose I am "coming out" as someone who believes my gay brothers and sisters are every bit as much a Child of God as I am. Their "gayness" I believe will not keep them from Christ, from heaven, from a meaningful life any more than my brunette hair will. I will not give up any of these labels I choose to label myself with just because I am not in agreement with the church. But in the darkness of homophobia I can no longer be silent. God says "If you love me you will love my people". So, I will continue to endeavor to love not just people of other sexual orientations but also the people bashing them. Because when we hate the "bashers" we are the bashers..

If you love until it hurts, there can be no more hurt only more love...Mother Teresa

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