July 1, 2015

don't miss the boat

I am an alcoholic. 

I also have a drug problem. 

Oops. Did I really just say that?

If you’re surprised to hear that, it’s because, well, it’s not something I’m proud of nor do I talk about it much. But, it is a part of me, a part of my history, and a part of my story. 

My newsfeed has been a mix of both rainbows and rainbow haters. Everything from, “This is the best day ever, we’re getting married!” to, “I’m deleting anyone from my friends list who have changed their profile photo to a rainbow.”

This is how I see it: 

The Bible (and I’m pretty sure everyone on the planet already knows this) says that same sex relationships are a sin. The Bible also says that drinking alcohol is a sin. As is sex outside of marriage, worshipping something other than God, and hating people. Did ya’ll just hear that?

We’re ALL in trouble. 

There seems to be a lot of “Don’t do that” in the Bible, right? When I read the Bible for the first time (I’m pretty sure I had a hard lemonade in my hand), I remember thinking, “Crap. I’ve already failed this test.” By the time I had read the Bible I’d already broken most of the commandments. 

In fact, giving my heart to God was a really hard thing. Not because of God is, but because of who I was. Did you get that? God isn’t the problem here. I am. 

I hear so many people saying that if you are friends with gay people you’re supporting them in their sin. Let’s just take a closer look at who Jesus’s BFFs were, shall we? 

Sinners. Tax collectors. Prostitutes. Betrayers. Demon-possessed people. When the holy dudes called him out for His choice of friends, Jesus made it really clear: It’s not the healthy that need a doctor, but the sick. Didn’t come here to call the righteous. You sinners, you drunks and thieves and murderers and, yep, the gay people too, YOU are who Jesus came for. 

He came for me. In my sin. 

He came for you. In all your sin. 

And He didn’t come demanding perfection. He didn’t come demanding you stop that sinning right now. He didn’t even demand you love Him. He came quietly. Showing a different, radical way that no one had ever seen before. He didn’t wait at the pulpit for people to come meandering in. He went out on the streets and met them right there where they were - right smack in the middle of their sin. 

This is what I love about Jesus. 

It’s OK to be a sinner. (If you weren’t you’d be dead.)

The Bible makes it very clear that every. single. one. of. us. sins. The pastors. The people going door-to-door giving out books. The people who are giving Bible studies. And, gasp! Even the missionaries. 

We’re all in this together, friends. 

And those who think we’re not… are missing the boat. 

If you’re a Christian, and you don’t have gay friends, you’re missing the boat. If you’re a Christian, and you don’t have friends who are smoking and drinking, you’re missing the boat. If you are a Christian and you’re not friends with people who are messed up and needing Jesus you are missing the boat. 

The point of being a Christian is to like Christ. You know, that guy who was a friend to sinners. If you’re not… what’s the point? 

I’ve been an atheist before. I get it. I get where my atheist friends come from. From the outside, Christians seem super judgmental and seem like they think they are so. much. better. than the rest of the world. 

But I’m here to tell you that not all Christ followers are judgmental and super holy.  

And by not judging people, I am not compromising my beliefs.  Just because I have gay friends doesn’t mean I’m a lesser Christian than you (generic you, not a particular person). 

Love is what it’s all about, friends. We can love people out there doing things we don’t believe are right or healthy or whatever. We can love them because Jesus loves them and because Jesus says, “go love them.” 


All I’m saying is the next time you let out your huffy breath in righteous indignation because someone is sinning right. there. in. the. open, remember that instead, you can maybe smile and at that very moment think of a way to show love to them. Don’t miss the boat. 

9 comments:

TN Quiltbug said...

Beautiful. Thank you for putting it into words.

Lanett Merrills said...

Wonderful articulation Cas! This is it exactly!

SheilaEJ said...

Thank you.

Russ said...

I love the way you expressed your heart with words, Cas. Unfortunately, there are those who will take exception to your pointing out that homosexuality is sin. Truth is truth regardless and Grace is there for all of us. Just heard a wonderful explination of Grace; Grace does not condemn, Grace does not condone, Grace comes along side and loves. I think that's where we need to be. And I think your words expressed that love beautifully.

Russ said...

I love the way you expressed your heart with words, Cas. Unfortunately, there are those who will take exception to your pointing out that homosexuality is sin. Truth is truth regardless and Grace is there for all of us. Just heard a wonderful explination of Grace; Grace does not condemn, Grace does not condone, Grace comes along side and loves. I think that's where we need to be. And I think your words expressed that love beautifully.

Russ said...

I love the way you expressed your heart with words, Cas. Unfortunately, there are those who will take exception to your pointing out that homosexuality is sin. Truth is truth regardless and Grace is there for all of us. Just heard a wonderful explination of Grace; Grace does not condemn, Grace does not condone, Grace comes along side and loves. I think that's where we need to be. And I think your words expressed that love beautifully.

Ruth Ann said...

Well said.

Judy said...

Cas
I am shocked at the revelation of your post. Why? Because I used to live in that dark world and felt no hope. I tried to live up to others expectations and sunk deeper into depression and addiction.
I was and still am told repeatedly that I look self assured and confident. Those are walls.
When I met you, you seemed to be self assured and confident and I was envious...LOL
About 4 or 5 years ago, I was sitting on my front porch asleep with my hand clutching my pack of cigarettes. I had been reading the Ministry of Healing trying desperately to reach out to God. He answered my request by sending me a vision (don't get excited I am not a prophet) of the intensity of the Father and His son Jesus being separated at the cross. I did not understand at that time the full impact of why He was putting this on my heart.
2 years August 24, 2013
I found out why. I lost my son.
When you get back to the jungle remind me of my commitment to you to join you there for a season. And thank you for sharing.
Your friend and sister in Christ
Judy <3

Kacie Reese said...

I just came across your blog today and am so grateful for your honesty and bravery. Hugs to you and your family.

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