Stuck in My Head

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Like an ostrich, you bury your head in the sand
And you shout at them all the things you believe.
And you talk to your God,
Prayin' for those who sin,
For their eyes to be opened...
~Ginny Owens, Without Condition

These lines have been playing through my mind all morning like a broken record. Today at work, we are being visited by SoulForce, a homosexual rights group that claims to be Christian. (I will leave the judgment on that claim between them and God.) SoulForce also invited a few other activist groups to join them at Patrick Henry College in gaining favorable media attention as they attempt to get arrested by the 75+ cops (state, federal, and local) who are patrolling the entirety of the campus.

I find myself mildly amused watching the theatrics on all sides. For SoulForce, we are the close-minded bigots. For PHC/HSLDA, SoulForce is a group of heretical invaders. To the cops, the groups represent possible danger. For the student security guards, SoulForce and PHC have robbed them of time to work on their studies. To HSLDA employees, the whole thing is a spectator sport.

I'm wondering what God is seeing. Knowing all of our hearts, and all of the considerations we have each taken into account leading us to the positions we are in today (in my case, it was just working at HSLDA that puts me into any sort of contact with this), what does He see when he looks down at the heavily-patrolled campus with its newly-posted "No Trespassing" signs? What does he see when two of the "visitors" rush the perimeter of the campus in a deliberate attempt to get arrested on camera (a desire that is promptly fulfilled)?

On campus, of course, there has been much preparation and prayer directed toward the events of today. Lots of "help them see the error of their ways" and "let us be a witness to impact them to change their lifestyle so that they will be more like Christ." All of this underneath the mocking snickering and blatant judgment because we are so much better than they are. I found myself wondering this morning how SoulForce had prepared for this visit, after being told that they would be arrested for trespassing on PHC property. Did they pray? What do they say about us?

There is a lot of reasoning outside my office about being told to cast out "believers" who come to preach a false gospel. Yet we've already determined that they are not believers anyway! So what about that "cup of cold water" given in Christ's name? I don't know that we could change them by showing them the "love of God." But remembering that this group, whatever lifestyle they have chosen, is made up of *people* would be a good start in our own hearts before God.

Is our faith in Christ not strong enough? Here are two sides, essentially shouting at each other all the things we believe, praying to our individual Gods, and expecting the other side to get a "point." In either case, I can't say that I know they are Christians "by their love," as 1 John points out. I hope the heaviness in my heart isn't unwarranted.

I think the Christian life is not about being right. It's about being His. Are we, or aren't we? Homosexuality is no worse a lifestyle than a lifestyle of pride and judgment. It is God who sees the heart.

"Hate the evil, and love the good, and establish judgment in the gate: it may be that the LORD God of hosts will be gracious unto the remnant of Joseph."
~Amos 5:15

(Whatever I feel about where anyone is coming from, I do want to note that I do support PHC's decision to use police force in keeping peace on the campus. I understand the considerations that they needed to make. These groups do not have a peaceable history, and because we live in a fallen world, these measures appear to be necessary. The amount of force was decided by the police after a study of the groups.)


Heidi said...

Wow, thanks for sharing your insights into this. What a brave post. Though many may disagree, I think that you hit the nail on the head: Christianity is not about being right, it's about being His. Sometimes I wonder why we as Christians don't get all up in arms about the thousands of verses in Scripture about poverty, the way that we do about the few verses on homosexuality. And why can't we be known for our love, rather than our fervent dogma about being "right"?

Strange of me I know, but I would have loved to sit outside and dialogue with some of the SoulForce people today...w

Lynette said...

Ditto to what Heidi said! :-) I've been finishing an article on temptation but not as we've known it; it IS a temptation to listen to self and be "right" in our own eyes! But it is not WHAT I do so much as WHY I do it. What is my motivation? What is the reason for my doing? Am I really motivated by Christ and what He is desiring, or am I motivated by what I think is right or what I want to do or what I feel obligated to do, or what others think I should do? Ultimately it is not a matter of good or bad, right or wrong, but simply death or Life!

We missed you guys last night btw :-( hope to see you again soon!

Anonymous said...

I wonder ... what would have been the reaction if the college had just not reacted other than to set up some tables with hot tea or cider and welcome them into the flag circle. No discussion of the "right or wrong" of their position, just welcome them - as you said - with a cup of cold water, or is their history to replete with violence to allow that possibility?


Kevin said...

Is there a difference how we treat them because they claim to be Christians?

Just curious, but what do you all think about what Paul wrote to the Corinthians about delivering such over to Satan for the destruction of the flesh...or delivering Hymeneus and Alexander over to Satan in 1 Timothy?

In my limited readings regarding SoulForce, they could not care less about genuine discussion, seeking truth, or finding Father's heart on the matter. It's political drama, not kingdom building.

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