Wednesday, July 16, 2014
"That's it?," he said. "I thought you would have been more upset than that."
"No, I'm not upset. You're a sinner and so am I. Anything else you want to tell me?"
"No, I guess not," my friend said, walking away, somewhat disappointed.
"Look, I still think homosexuality is a sin," I told him. "But your sin is just like MY sin. There's dozens of others sins in this world - stealing, adultery, lying, drunkenness, there's lots of them. The question is, what are we going to do about our sin?"
That brief conversation has probably happened thousands of times around the world. Maybe not that same way. Some reactions to such an announcement were probably worse than mine. Such disclosures can cause splits in families or estrangement. Division amongst friends and family members can occur. Even violence.
I have now had four teens deliver similar messages to me over the past few years. Apparently, this message is one that must be "delivered" compared to other sins. I have experienced such announcements delivered face to face and I have seen them delivered on Facebook. Either way, the outcome we show is always mixed. Some people encourage, some say nothing in response.
There is always some awkwardness associated with "coming out of the closet." Just like the friend in my first example. The person making the announcement isn't quite sure of the reaction he or she will get. There is some caution and perhaps a little fear. And it definitely takes some courage to make such an announcement because the announcer is not too sure just what they will encounter.
Recently though, I began looking at these announcements from a different point of view - that of the parents. Some parents might be proud of their child for making such a bold statement. Other parents might be embarrassed. "What will Aunt Edna think?"
But when we get right down to it, what should parents think? What should we do?
I recently talked to a mom who was going through one of these "announcements." As I listened to her I could sense many emotions coming from her words - frustration, disappointment, sadness. But the one emotion that I noticed most was love. Unconditional love.
That made me wonder about how God feels with all these announcements being made these days, about these new lifestyles that are being experimented with. I imagine he's feel the same way as most caring parents do. Disappointed and sad to be sure. But God still loves, unconditionally.
God's Word gives us a listing of characteristics that God does not like and those that He does. Homosexuality is one of the ones He doesn't like. But that doesn't seem to make a difference in the world we live in today. We are told we must me accepting and tolerant and loving. The Bible never tells us to be accepting or tolerant of sin but we ARE told to love.
Where does all this acceptance and tolerance talk come from? It comes from our society. It comes from us. But the main sources of this indoctrination is our public schools. God has been or is being removed from schools and the resulting influx of sin is filling the void.
The type of lives we are supposed to lead is clearly outlined in the Bible yet more and more we see these values falling by the wayside. Why? Because they are not being taught and that leaves our kids to be the ones to determine, on their own, what is right and what is wrong. That is a mistake.
We parents need to make a stand. A loving, God-honoring stand. We can no longer simply ship our kids off to schools thinking that they will be just fine. We need to invest in our kids and care about them enough to make sure they are not receiving the false teachings of the world.
When a child makes an announcement about a new lifestyle they are living in, it is already too late. We must take action BEFORE things get to that point. We must pray for our kids and their teachers, we must go to meetings and make an effort. These are our children!
For these teens and for their parents there is still hope. God desires that none should perish (2 Peter 3:9). Seek out the counsel of pastors and mentors who can build into your child's lives - someone to help keep them accountable in ALL things. And pray. Prayer is a mighty weapon. Place your faith and hope and trust in God. And give this all to Him. We as parents struggle to handle things like drug & alcohol use, sexual activity, and violence in our children's live. But God can handle it. He's been dealing with it for centuries!
"3 The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery, and placing her in the midst 4 they said to him, “Teacher, this woman has been caught in the act of adultery. 5 Now in the Law Moses commanded us to stone such women. So what do you say?” 6 This they said to test him, that they might have some charge to bring against him. Jesus bent down and wrote with his finger on the ground. 7 And as they continued to ask him, he stood up and said to them, “Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her.” 8 And once more he bent down and wrote on the ground. 9 But when they heard it, they went away one by one, beginning with the older ones, and Jesus was left alone with the woman standing before him. 10 Jesus stood up and said to her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” 11 She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you; go, and from now on sin no more.” - John 8:3-11
We need to come along side these kids who are making these lifestyle decisions. We need to do so in love. Yes, they may be sinning, but each of us sins every day as well and we need to remember that as we speak to others about THEIR transgressions. We need to love them where they're at and tell them about the love and saving grace of Jesus. If they would only come to know Him and place their trust in Him, and Him alone, most of these other issues will fade away. The key in all this is repentance and that comes through a relationship with Christ. He is the only one who saves. And He is the one who modeled for us the perfect lifestyle. It is HIS lifestyle we must emulate, not the one society offers.
Indoctrination Movie (partial)