Source: Cheesy Chicken Alfredo casserole
So I bought some paint a while back to put a fresh coat up on the interior of my house. “Filtered Shade” is the romantic name I selected. Ok, really, it’s just a shade of gray. Still, I really loved the name. I mean would I have loved it as much had been just plain old gray? Probably not. I don’t buy nail polish, lip gloss and eye shadow in red, pink or blue. No. I want “Late Fall Apple, Powder Puff Pink and Mid-Summer Sky”. Now those are colors I can plunk some money down on.
Faith, religion and church come in many shades and variances too. Definitely not a one size fits all. But, I do remember, not so long ago, when I was a true believer in the one size fits all way of thinking. I was comfortable with that and felt pity for anyone who did not find their path to God the same way I had.
Fast forward many years and let the unraveling begin. I began a journey into the possibility that God was not a thin, narrow, one-size fits all God. Could the God of the universe actually love, embrace and celebrate all of his creation? Radical and scary stuff at first.
But once I began unraveling my tightly held beliefs it caused a seismic shift in my view of God, love, religion and life. I had to ask myself : Did Jesus come, love, serve and die for a few? Or did he pay the the ultimate price for all of man-kind? Do only a relative few who say a prayer in a certain way get to God? Or when Jesus said “It is finished” did he mean just that? It’s done. Nothing else is required. No four part prayer, no paying dues, no self-flagellation, no belonging to a particular denomination or religion. Jesus did it, he finished it right then and there. Plus nothing.
Our existence is not one shade or color. Life most certainly is not one shade of gray. Sit under a tree on a summer afternoon and watch the beautiful filtered shade come through the branches and leaves. It moves in waves of sun and shade, light and dark. So many beautiful filtered shades of gray. The shades are not the same, but they are equally lovely. I choose to let that balmy, calming breeze blow new life into my walk with God. I feel God moving in and among the beautiful shades of gray in my life. No longer expecting any of it to look or move exactly like I expected it to. But, loving and embracing it all just the same.
When you have a gay child LGBT issues begin to take up a great deal of your thought process.
When our oldest son was outed by his “Christian” school my knee jerk reaction was how are we going to fix this? What will people think of us?
How things have changed, and for the better. Life has a way of doing this sometimes, doesn’t it?
When your child comes out (or in our precious son’s case unceremoniously outed by your church/school) your world WILL spin off its axis. How awesome it would be if every family could skip the earth shattering phase. For some parents this spinning out of control phase will NOT be automatic. For those of us with a Fundamentalist Christian back ground, your world will be nauseatingly rocked.
And silent. Very, very silent.
Now, don’t get me wrong, if we had a birth, death or illness my kitchen would have been flooded with cakes and casseroles.
But a child being outed in a conservative, fundamentalist community means sweeping that big pink elephant under the proverbial rug. I get it. I was there, I lived it. The fear and lack of understanding can be paralyzing. The “abomination” word doesn’t exactly bring the tuna noodle casseroles rushing through your front door. No, if you have a gay child in a fundamentalist community it will be more like crickets chirping.
Looking in life’s rear view mirror gives me pause. I wish I knew then, what I clearly understand now. Don’t we all…………
Moving forward, let me say this. If you have a LGBT child, friend, sibling, co-worker, or where ever you find people who are not wired just like you, let me ask you to try and understand that they are who they are because they too, were designed by the masterful, loving hand of God. (I won’t get into any theological wranglings here. I have finally learned to trust my journey and let God deal with others journey’s).
This is heretical to some.
Not to me. Not ever again.
Peace, hope, love and tuna noodle casseroles.