If there’s something that amazes me about some religious individuals, is their ability to sit in judgment of God. That is, they have more restrictions, more rules and a narrower path to our Lord and Savior than written in the Old and New Testament combined.
Sin (or perceived sin) is sin. There is no bigger, dirtier, nastier or craftier sin in the eyes of God. If you believe in God, hell and the like, there is only ONE hell. In this ONE hell there is one standard heat level, the flames don’t burn hotter for murderers than they do for those who stole a piece of candy…same hell, same flame, same burn.
So I’m having a late night chat with my mom last night – well, with my parents, but dad is deaf so he’s just sitting there watching the building tension between my mom and I – and the issue of homosexuality comes up. It’s actually more the issue of sleeping arrangements that comes up, since my mother seems to think that BD and I should sleep separately when they visit our home. I thought I addressed this many times before – something like every visit for the last 26 years – but like clockwork here was the discussion again. Finally, I calmly said, “Mom, I love you and dad very much and welcome you into my home year-after-year, even though you and dad threw me to the wolves on the street at the tender age of 15; I forgive you for the timeS (that’s right, it was more than once) that I was brutally raped trying to seek shelter; I don’t hold your ignorance under the microscope for the times I was cold or hungry on the streets; I don’t stay awake at night plotting vengeance on you or dad for stealing my teenage years away from me by forcing me to need a full time job while finishing high school while other kids were simply planning their prom, but I will be very honest with you and tell you that you will NOT regulate where my partner and I sleep, how we run this household and my life as it is today.” I felt my chest swelling, but I took a deep breath and kept my voice low…my resolve did not waver when I continued, “You deal with your other children and their many sins as though you don’t see them…you ignore them because it is not your business, but you appear to feel empowered to say things that are inappropriate to me.” This is when my mom probably said the most ignorant thing I have EVER heard her say to me before…she said, “They are sinning, but they are not going against society’s norm…you know, they don’t go against the grain.” My face contorted – a combination of pain and disappointment furled into my brow before I responded, “I would have had an easier time if you were judging me through the narrow minded view of a God fearing woman that sees sin as sin, but you are judging me through the bigoted and homophobic eyes of the very sliver of society that I detest. That is the most ignorant thing you have ever said to me…stupid really. I’m disappointed in you mom. Sin is sin…read your Bible, do some soul-searching prayer.” Then I said what I knew in my heart I meant more than anything I’ve ever said to her, “I have forgiven you two and welcomed you into my home after what I suffered in my life at the hands of your ignorance, but I won’t have you disrespect me, my relationship and my family in my home. You are always welcome here, but you are a guest visiting MY family and NOTHING about MY family will change because you are here. If this is uncomfortable for you, I’m sorry, but you have the option of staying elsewhere…maybe where the sin is more tolerable for you or less against the grain.” With that I marched upstairs, took my shower and went to bed. This morning, I made coffee for my parents and left them with a kiss and a smile. I hold no grudges…life is too short. I know my parents love me and I love them very much, but God judges all sin equally and it is NOT their place to sit in judgment of God. Don’t lose your children and the opportunity to share their lives because of your ignorance. Recognize when you are a homophobe and a bigot. God is NOT a God of ignorance.