"I assume that those who cling to old beliefs will be able to whisper their thoughts in the recesses of their homes, but if they repeat those views in public, they will risk being labeled as bigots and treated as such by governments, employers, and schools." -Justice Alito
Well, I've taken a couple of days to compose myself and collect my thoughts. I turned off my television and limited my social media exposure. There has been so much hatred spewed and so many feelings hurt during the past four days. There have been families divided and friendships ended. People on both sides of this decision have been sharing their opinions, sharing their hearts and changing their profile pictures. Unfortunately, many who have chosen to openly support marriage, (I will not recognize gay marriage. Marriage, for the purposes of this blog, is defined between one man and one woman.) have been shut down, ridiculed and called horribly offensive names. And I must say, I have seen some terribly offensive and completely inappropriate things said about those who support same-sex marriage. None of it is okay. And we should all be ashamed of ourselves.
However, so many people have messaged me and inquired as to my feelings regarding the recent SCOTUS ruling on same-sex marriage, that I feel moved to share my thoughts.
So, here they are:
Admittedly, I was shocked and appalled. No, I'll go even a step further--I was absolutely devastated. Last week, our country changed. Last week, a group of five overly educated, politically untouchable individuals fundamentally transformed our beloved America. And while many cheered and hailed the SCOTUS's 5-4 decision as a victory for freedom, equality and love, there were and still are many Americans who saw the Court's decision as completely wrong. I, of course, am one of those.
However, in the midst of my desperation, I have searched my heart and tamed my tongue. I have stepped back and looked inward and upward, bowed my head and cried out. I have looked to scripture for answers and sought the Lord's comfort and perfect peace.
And I'll admit, I have not found the complete solace I was looking for. I am still feeling uncertain and upset about the future of my community, my state and my nation. I am still scratching my head and wondering how in the world we got here? In all honesty, I am still somewhat in denial.
On Sunday, at two o'clock in the morning, my tired, blue eyes flew open. And my first thoughts during those quiet, dark hours, were of the wildly popular hashtag campaign #lovewins. Now, for those of you who follow social media, this hashtag isn't new to you. Twitter blew up, Facebook was ablaze with it. People who never post anything, all of a sudden began posting rainbow colored White Houses coupled with #lovewins. Social media became a battle ground as gay marriage supporters wielded the infamous hashtag to smear their "victory" in the faces of those Americans who were grieving the judicial loss.
But as I laid there, in the comfort of my bed, a thought occurred to me. An epitome of sorts. You see, #lovewins is terribly ironic. Love. Wins. Say it slowly. Say it over and over again. Love wins.
Oh, how deceived and mistaken all those individuals are...
Love didn't win last week, politics did. Love, true love, eternal love, REAL love, won two thousand years ago when Jesus Christ died on the cross for all of our sins. Perhaps if Christ had been crucified in today's time, in the era of Facebook and Twitter, His sacrifice would have gone viral. And maybe, just maybe, accompanying His bleeding, beaten image hanging from the Cross, would have been the hashtag #LOVEWON. Because let's be clear: the world has never experienced a victory more resounding and complete.
You see, we, for the most part, don't really get love. We don't understand the seriousness of love and the depth of it's intention. If we did, we would be much more cautious of proclaiming it and much more thoughtful of bestowing it. If we truly understood love, the world would look profoundly different. But because humanity doesn't grasp love, we continue to pervert it, wrongfully promote it, vainly seek it, naively run for it, completely miss it and intentionally misconstrue it. We get it wrong because we don't understand it.
Listen, call me what you will. Hate me if you want. I am impervious to your insults and ire. But here's the truth: Gay marriage doesn't exist. It simply doesn't. Yes, that's exactly what I just said. I don't give a rats rear end what five lawyers in black robes ruled last week. They are not my Authority and this country is not my home. I am simply passing through this messed up, confusing life in route to a place of perfection and peace. And while I must be respectful to those who are charged with and granted earthly authority and power, I am ultimately and most importantly accountable to God. The Constitution is an amazing document and I stand in awe of it's never-ending relevance. Well, that is until I compare it to the Bible. And then, as much as I love the Founder's insight, I am blown away by God's breathed Word.
In fact, I tell people all the time, I don't hate anyone. I love everyone. I just love God more.
But, here, back to last week. Marriage has been defined for many millenium. Marriage was created and sanctified by the Creator and Perfecter of all things. And that same Creator and that same Perfecter, left no question as to the importance and serious nature of a marital union. Marriage is between a man and a woman. Period. Marriage was God's idea. He saw that Adam was lonely and created the perfect companion for him. He made Adam strong when Eve was weak and created Eve to be strong when Adam was failing. He tasked them with procreation. He created their bodies in such a way that they could precisely connect and become one flesh. In the New Testament, God uses the marital relationship to prepare the Church for Jesus Christ's return. Marriage is big, y'all. Marriage is God's baby and I have a feeling that He won't appreciate the perversion humanity has heaped upon it.
And yes, many of us are guilty of perverting and desecrating the marital union and bed. From pre-marital co-habitation to divorce to adultery. We have jacked it up. Royally.
But this is different. This redefinition of marriage last week by the SCOTUS was and is a deeper wound, a harder blow.
This progressive "victory" is an attack on not only God's vision for marriage, but also on our Christian faith. In resisting this evolution of marriage, believers are going to be seen as bigots and judgmental. We will be seen as hateful and divisive if we don't conform to this newly assigned definition. We are going to be persecuted for our stances and seen as complicit by our silence.
So, yeah, I'll say it: we are supposed to love everyone. We are charged with being a light in this dark world and winning people to the Cross by showing them God's love and Jesus's sacrifice. But loving someone doesn't mean you agree with everything they do, say and become. Parents, when we discipline our children, we are disagreeing with a decision they made or a behavior they exhibited. Our disagreement and subsequent discipline doesn't change the depth of love we possess for our child. The same is true here. I may not agree with someone's lifestyle choices and behavior, but that disagreement doesn't alter the reality and depth of my affection. To argue that it does, simply proves that the person is themselves judgmental, intolerant and only capable of loving conditionally.
I don't care who you are or what you believe, I am going to say it again: Love didn't win last week, politics did. Love won two thousand years ago when Jesus Christ died on the cross for all of our sins. He died for the sake of love. He died because He loved us more than our feeble minds can imagine. Yes, He loves those rainbow flag waving gay couples celebrating their new "right" to "marriage". And He loves those of us who are struggling with accepting the new law of our land. No doubt, Jesus loves us all. However, repentance and holy transformation to be more Christ-like is also part of what the Gospel preaches. Because lest we neglect to recognize, Christ also died for all of those who will spend eternity separated from Him. His love is intended for all but rejected by many.
Obviously, based on the last few days, modern America is missing the mark...