I click onto Facebook--which I so totally loathe, still, but I cannot seem to break free from it.
Oh well, maybe tomorrow.
One of the top news feeds (a.k.a. someone's "status") is an entire argument and debate about gay marriage. I mean, really, where isn’t that an issue today? There is a Christian minister/pastor/preacher? whose stance is very clear, very black and white. There are some with thumbs up responses and some with definite thumbs down. The 'thumb-downers' seem so offended. Rightfully so, I think. These days, it's all about being on one side or the other. And once you've picked a side, there you had better stay, and fight hard for it! Don't let the other side shake you or put you down. Build up those defenses!
Volatile or not, It’s the thing to do.
One of the most thought-provoking arguments on this thread comes from a young man who talks about God's idea of marriage. Sanctity (a big word for the quality of holy and sacred, ultimate importance) of marriage was the biggest piece of his argument. "If you're going to debate the sanctity of marriage, you ought to look at straight marriages too, where spouses are cheating, addicted to porn, lying, and abusing. Their union is no better image of the sanctity than gay marriages.” Well said, I thought.
Ravi Zacharias--one of the most knowledgeable, kind debaters I've ever listened to--says something like this,
"Pain is God's way of telling us something is wrong."
He tells the story of a little girl who cannot feel pain, so she is subject to life-threatening injuries without even knowing it. She has to have 24/7 care to protect her from bad things. So, you know, it's kind of like the bigger issue of pain—death, harm, sadness; we feel it to protect ourselves from bad things, wrong decisions, and life-threatening situations.
I think the young man in the argument was feeling just that--pain. Pain, maybe because he has a gay friend and he can't stand persecution and judgment of that friend, pain because he's tired of the fighting and confrontation, pain because he has experienced some of that straight adultery or abuse...
Ravi also says 'no matter how you answer this question, you'll offend someone'. So, maybe we should try to speak to the heart of these issues, rather than debate and offend and argue and destroy. Maybe we should seek the heart of the people, rather than their words and actions. To be 'holy' is to be set apart. Jesus was set apart because he stood up for the better of all people--not just the obedient or the righteous. He was set apart because he didn't live in fear, but walked, fully, blatantly, and unapologetically in love. He was set apart because his concern was the heart of his people, and healing those hearts.
Don't let arguments and debates cloud your judgment of a person's goodness or kindness. Those of you who are married because the government has allowed it, live with such purity, honesty, and love, that no one can question why you were allowed that right. Those of you who aren't married and struggle with should or shouldn't I, don't let the complaints of marriage deter you, but seek a marriage you were intended for--one that urges you to be a more giving and loving person. Choose marriage because it is the ultimate relationship. It is the relationship we were created for--one that is deep, true, selfless, and honest. It is giving, difficult, and taxing, but it is the sign of growth and maturity.
The truth is, I don’t want Alex to cheat because I want him to love me so much he couldn’t fathom it. I want to never be tempted to cheat because I love him so much, not because there is a taboo or because of some rule. And some days, maybe this is unrealistic. (Just like I’d like it if cheetahs would stop eating gazelles) But I deeply believe that God created us for this kind of marriage. He created us, originally, for a world where there was no killing and destroying.
See what is good, because the heart of the matter is good--not because you believe something or someone is right or wrong. Stand up for what you believe, because you have been convicted of such a belief, not because you have promised your loyalty to this side or that. And do not--do not--hate other people because you do not understand or agree; love people despite those things. Love people because that's what marriage was originally intended for.