Wednesday, May 23, 2007

That Old Time Religion

Well, now that I've come this far (no pun intended), why not just go all the way and tackle the big one and really get myself in hot water -- Religion. At no time in the history of the world has there ever been a time when religion of one sort or another has not been at the center of ... well, everything. Crusades have been launched over it. Wars have been fought over it. Countless people have been slaughtered because of it. Friendships have been destroyed as a result of it. Which brings us to the Southern Baptists.

For the sake of the uninformed or those not residing in glorious Dixie, the Southern Baptists are an offshoot of the American Baptists (or so I'm told). The most important thing to realize about the SBs is that everything is considered wrong. Those of you not familiar with the SBs and their, um, intensity might think that I am kidding. Oh, how I scoff at you in your ignorance. You just haul yourself just south of the Mason-Dixon and we'll just have ourselves a little look-see. And then we'll talk about who's wrong. For starters, alcohol is wrong. Dancing is wrong. Sex is wrong. In some circles, listening to music with a drumbeat and women wearing pants is "just not done". Generally anything fun (Disney, for example) are considered wrong at some level, but drinking, dancing and sex are the big three. Oh, I almost forgot, -- no one loves a fight like a Baptist. They can fight and fry chicken at the same time. I swear. Wait -- that's wrong, too. (I once heard a joke: Why don't Baptists have sex standing up? Wait for it...Someone might think they are dancing.)

Now having said all of that, can you IMAGINE how being gay would be received? LIKE A TURD IN A PUNCHBOWL! That's how. Which is why I have chosen to take the high and noble path regarding my alternate lifestyle -- I just haven't told any of 'em. I know, I know -- it sounds cowardly and it is. Still, being in the process (process being not fully there yet) of coming out, there are just some things I am not ready to face. I never intended to explode "out" to the whole world. Just to the people that I truly love and care about. I figure my business is simply my business. Whereas, according to traditional Baptist doctrine, I am on fast track to Hell because I drink and dance. However, I do not believe God makes mistakes. Dealing with the fact that I am gay has been a source of shame and guilt, most of which was imposed by the church over the course of a lifetime. Feelings like shame and guilt do not go away overnight, just as they did not materialize overnight, but they do tend to lessen with time as we learn to accept and understand ourselves and realize that the church is not necessarily God incarnate. His people are fallible and make mistakes -- lots of them. I believe the way they have treated the gay population is chief amongst them. Human nature dictates that we respond in kind when offended. I think a better response is to look at the life of Jesus and try to treat others accordingly.

Still the way it is...

Creative Thinker


Whendy said...

I believe those things God would have us focus on would be the things Jesus spoke of most, those things He chose to say when given an audience. We do only have one life as it escapes us each day increasingly faster I hope my life compiled of all my actions will reveal love and gratitude to God instead of love for only myself. Quite amazing the task of measuring and revealing sins are considered important and worthy of ones time. Fulfilling my role to my family and loving those God has put in my path requires much of my time. I am ashamed to say my obligation to the community is frequently neglected.

Now as I excuse myself to pick up the dog poop, mow the grass and water the flowers in the little boxes may I think of what I can do for that teacher who was pulled out of her class room and told her child has a brain tumor or that family down the street with three young children who may loose their daddy to crack.

dandelionink said...

this comment is so true. Let us spend our time here making the world a better place, not placing blame on others. It is such a waste of our precious time here. And if we do this, I believe we are blessed as well. Truly what I think God wants for us to do, in my humble opinion


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