There is a gay couple that spends every Sunday morning at my neighborhood Starbucks. They order venti lattes, laugh with the barista and read the newspaper together.
They’re not politicians; they’re people. They’re not a cause; they’re a couple. They’re not angry; they’re average.
If I were more outgoing, I’d ask these guys to be my friends. I like them. They smile a lot, drink the same coffee I do, and they still read newspapers.
Only the best old souls still read newspapers.
Sitting here, just a few tables from these old souls, I wonder if the church is missing the point when it comes to the homosexual community.
Just like the clouds assembling in the sky above me, there has long been a growing storm in culture. Gay rights isn’t just an issue anymore, it is the issue. And the church has jumped in on the front lines. We’ve made it political. But I don’t think it’s political; I think it’s personal.
Real people with real lives asking real questions. What is more personal than that?
Years ago, a gay friend told me, “Bryan, I can’t come to your church. I’m not welcome there.” I insisted he was wrong, but I knew he was right. He scares church people. They see him as an attack, as a battle to be fought, as a loss of moral high ground.
But he is none of those things. He’s just a guy. He’s searching like the rest of us.
I’m reminded that in the question of law versus grace, Jesus showed us that grace wins every time. When the crowds wanted to throw stones to prove a political point, Jesus saw an accused woman as an individual, not an issue.
He chased away the religiously angry before asking poignantly: “Woman, where are your accusers?”
Today, not much has changed. We’re still angry. We’re still trying to prove our point. We’re still casting stones.
I wonder what Jesus would say about that.