I recently had the opportunity to interview 4 dudes who are friends about the topic of Homosexuality. I asked the questions concerning the method in which they would love and befriend someone who identifies as gay or someone who is struggling with homosexuality.
Surprisingly, they were very open to befriending someone who is gay and believes it is okay be in a same sex relationship. They would just explain to them their disagreements about same sex relationships and where they stand on the topic (they think it is sinful), but they would include them in their life still.
I also learned they were willing to be in close friendship with someone who is not gay affirming, but attracted to the same sex. These guys are on an athletic team and they said they would still include them in all aspects of the team environment including the locker room (that means showering naked together because they believe that is a team bonding experience).
I walked through every scenario in which they would have to deal with a teammate that is attracted to the same sex or might even be attracted to them. A couple of them were still open to being physically vulnerable with them in the locker room and some others still had some questions. But overall, it seemed like they would still care for a friend that struggled with homosexuality. It would be a learning process for them.
But what was surprising to me and a bit discouraging was that they didn’t believe they needed to know how to care for someone who is attracted to the same sex, until they came across someone who struggled with it.
Which gave me 2 thoughts -
1. People who struggle with this that are in their life are not being open about it (and there are people in their life that do experience this).
2. The Church isn’t emphasizing the importance of this topic in the right way. They are emphasizing how to love someone who is gay affirming, but they are not emphasizing that we need to know our brothers and sisters who struggle with this.
Now for the latter point, I want to address this first. I think the Church still doesn’t know how to practically love someone who struggles with this on a corporate setting like they do with family matters and other “straight matters” that are easy to preach on (I hope they follow the 4T’s), like marriage, education, theology, small groups, leadership, child development, etc.
The Church seems to still want to make sure it looks like we are loving the gays since the Church has looked bad publicly. What I am more concerned with is what are we doing about those in the Church that have chosen to see their desire to have sex with the same sex as sinful.
Are we loving them?
Are we meeting their needs?
Are we expecting God to come down and just skip the sanctifying process they need to go through with Church community and just zap them with the new resurrected body we will all get in the New Kingdom?
I would argue these Christians who are struggling with homosexuality are dying in the Church.
Recently, there was an article that said Christians who are Side B are doing better than what was originally thought.
When I read this article it was quite frustrating because this doesn’t seem to be the case for many who are Side B.
They are still hurting and lost.
And what is a bit frustrating is that it seems like the Church doesn’t think they need to really get down to the practicality of meeting the needs of someone who struggles with this.
The perception I have of the general population in the Church is that it isn’t anyone’s specific job to love someone who struggles with this.
God will do it.
And that is how the Church loses. And it has been.
I pray and hope every Christian stops and rethinks their life in Christ and how God can use them and their bodies to love those that struggle with homosexuality for they are the key!
If you are a pastor, church elder, church leader, Christian, we need to start talking about this topic again, but in the context of how to have deep physical, healthy, godly, intimacy with our Church communities and Christians who are struggling with homosexuality in their life. Ask yourself this question, "Is my Church actually helping those that struggle with this? Am I?"
We don't need to talk about gay marriage anymore, or how “gross” it is. That was last season.
The way Christ used his body to love the Church, lets love each other with our bodies, and that doesn’t mean sex, it means brotherly and sisterly physical healthy affection.
God is now using His physical body (Christians) to meet the deep healthy, godly, longings of those that are attracted to the same sex and for those that are single and long for deep community.
God is using the body to meet the needs of someone who is attracted to the same sex.
If someone is attracted to you, you are literally the God answered prayer that Christian has been praying for.
God uses death, the very thing Satan was using to destroy God's people, to now bring resurrection.
God uses the body, the very thing that Satan is using to cause death in the gay community, to bring life and resurrection.
The 4T’s is one method (I would argue a great method) of loving someone in a healthy intimate way.
See if it can work in your context.
Love others the way Christ loved the Church. You have the power of the Holy Spirit living in you. The same power that resurrected Jesus from the dead.