We truly are a family redefined. We are husband, wife, son, daughter, step children, biological and adopted children and most importantly, Children of God.

A friend pointed out that I needed to update my blog header. After our adoption from Ethiopia, I had updated it stating how the adoption of Sara Joy completed our family. Well... the journey continues. After much prayer, we have decided to follow what we feel is God's calling for us...we went to Ghana with the intention of adopting a four year old girl, Isabella Hope. Little did we know that she would be the catalyst to bringing home not only her, but her half brother and sister. We will now be adding not only Isabella Hope to our family, but also Mary Grace (9) and Gilbert (6) who we will transition to the name Nathaniel Timothy. The shock is wearing off and the JOY and EXCITEMENT are overwhelming. Now truly, our family is complete. The great part of journeying with God, is that it's always an adventure. He knows where we are going, and for us it is all a marvelous surprise. Looking forward to sharing our family adventures as we walk daily through life and as we venture off to Ghana to bring home Mary, Nate and Isabella! It's always an adventure redefining our family!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Why is it assumed that DEBATE EQUATES to HATE?

I wrote this yesterday on Chick-Fil-A appreciation day.... one of the most controversial fast food support days I have ever seen....

All day today, I have been biting my tongue.  It's been hard to do.  I went about my day, doing the things I do... as I waited in the Dr. office, finishing an appointment with Anna, I pulled out my phone and opened up Facebook.  It seemed that all anyone had to talk about was Chick-Fil-A and whether or not they would eat chicken today, or ever again for that matter.  Some, ate chicken three times today.  Some, will never eat chicken again for fear it would somehow support Chick-Fil-A.  Personally, I would have had some chicken today, but I was busy doing some other things.  But to limit your diet because of someone voicing their personal views, is in my mind... silly.

Chicken is chicken.  Money is money.  Support what you want to support.  Don't support it if you don't want to.  But whatever you do  (or don't do)... can't we just take the hate out of it all?  There is no good reason for curse words to be exchanged over CHICKEN!!!!!  Even if my eating chicken means I support something that you don't believe I should support.  I know that there is a lot more behind it than chicken, but it seems to have come to that.  If you were in line at Chick-Fil-A today - even by ACCIDENT, or just because you like their food and were really, really hungry - then from what I saw on FB, you are hated by those who are in agreement with same sex marriage.  Ok, so truthfully, no one would really have waited in the long lines that they had to wait in today, unless they were doing it to support a cause that they believed in.  I've looked through my FB posts and saw many unkind words regarding those who were in line today....as much as people are thinking that those in line are haters - take a look in the mirror.  Thank goodness I was not able to get in line today, or I would be among the list of those who are hated!  By virtue of this post though, I will likely join the ranks..... but keep an open mind first... because I'm not a hater....

I started my own FB post, but it got too long, so I just thought I'd wander over here and put my thoughts here....I'll post it to my friends on FB, because I have nothing to hide, and then they can take the appropriate action, if any, if they feel the need to take me off of their friend list....

If I said I stood in line at Chick-Fil-A today, and if I said I support the fact that a marriage is one man and one woman, how many of you would take me off of your FB friend list?  Be honest.  Don't just "de-friend" me.. be sure to leave me a comment, because I want to know that I should miss you.  Marriage being between one man and one woman is what God intended.  It's what I believe.  Anything else is something other than "marriage".  God made it.  God ordained it.. therefore God can define it.  If you want the legal part of marriage, call it something else, call it anything else, have the same legal rights as marriage, I don't care... but marriage, as God intended is one man and one woman.  I'm not taking a stand on rights associated with marriage (which I feel are civil rights), it's about MARRIAGE!!!  I don't "HATE" people for their differing thoughts - I should just be able to support my personal Christian values publicly without being hated, just like everyone else.  There are groups, public events, fraternities, sororities etc for people who support same sex couples.  Just as you have your right to voice your support, I have mine.  I don't hate you for your views.  I'm not naive, and I understand that there is discrimination that I don't live with (trust me when I say I live with my own), but I don't support that discrimination.  I would not "de-friend" you because you were gay.  I would not say bad things about you.  If you needed help, I would help you.  At one point not too long ago, I was a hiring/firing manager - and I would do neither based on sexual orientation.  I cared more about your work ethic than what you did while off the job.  I value you based on you!  Not what you do behind closed doors.  

That being said, I do have my opinions just as you have yours.  Personally, I'm team God.  I won't water it down, because it's who I am.  I'm not going to push it on you, but I will say that I think, based on the bible, that my God wanted marriage to be one man and one woman.  Do I feel it's sinful otherwise?  Based on the God of my bible, yes?  Can I hate you for it?  Based on the God of my bible, NO!  Should I look down on you, torment you, belittle you, call you names, throw ugly names your way, discriminate against you, berate you or in any way, shape or form HATE you?  NO.  Absolutely not!  That's not my God.  That's not what my God represents, and it's therefore not what I am to represent.  

Would I welcome a relationship like that into my home?  No.  Truthfully, call me protective, call me close-minded... call me whatever, but I won't pretend like I support same sex marriage to my children.  I don't get to make decisions for my children, but the way I raise them can influence their future.  In the end, they have their own decisions to make.  However, if a child is exposed to something, good or bad, it is more acceptable to them.  They are my children to raise, and I will raise them in a way that I feel honors God....even if it offends you a little (or a lot).  While I will not welcome a same sex relationship in my home, and my children will see that - they will also see that I can still love the person.  Can I hate the SIN, but love the SINNER?  Yes.  THAT is what I want my children to see.  Again, it sounds harsh, but it's not something I'm willing to water down.  I'm not team heterosexual, or against team homosexual... I'm FOR TEAM GOD!!!!  Being Team God puts me on a side... so that's where I'll stand.  When I get to heaven, if I responded to any homosexual person in a way that God did not intend me to, then I'll answer to HIM!  Until then, I support the man/woman marriage.

So, when I put the title of this in there, it was not a preview of my views that I would be writing about.  So what was it?  It was really, how I was feeling.  All day, I felt the need to say something, to stand up for what I believe.  Not to bash what someone else believes, or deny them of their right to something, but to state what I believe.  It's not wrong for me to do that.  I understand that my views are conservative, but they are MY views, and I have a right to them.  I have a right to say that they are my views, just as you have a right to say what your views are.  My desire is not to offend others.  My desire is not to represent hate.  My desire is to stand firm in MY beliefs.... as controversial as they may be.  

Many people today do water down what they believe.  They make it palatable to everyone.  Life as a Christian is not meant to be palatable to the non-Christian.  Life as a Christian is not mean to be palatable to a Christian living in sin.  Life as a Christian is only meant to be palatable to those who are willing to live the way God intended us to live.  And even then, for the Christian it is not easy.  Palatable, yes - because we chose and desire to live a certain way.. but certainly not easy.... palatable for those who are willing to change, to grow, to be transformed into the image of Christ.  My beliefs - Love God / Love Others... but that does not mean that I have to reject other parts of the bible that God intended me to follow.  Marriage - one man and one woman is clear to me.  I don't care if God only says it once in the bible (and discusses loving others multiple times over)... if God says it once, then it's enough for me.  And the thing about God that is great (one of the many things) is that He never commands us to do something that we can not carry out.  WE CAN support marriage being one man and one woman, and at the EXACT SAME TIME show Christian love to everyone.  Not only CAN we do it, but He EXPECTS it.  That's MY GOD!

So, now that you know my opinion, if you are in a same sex relationship, what should you expect from me?  You should expect me to treat you with love and respect.  I may not welcome a same sex partnership into my home, but I will treat you with the love and respect that God calls me to.  

Views on any topic, including this one, are personal.  Personal views become discriminatory when  you try to force them on others.  Nothing about supporting Chick-Fil-A and their stand on same sex marriage is discriminatory.  Can you be a same sex couple, go into Chick-Fil-A and expect to be served and treated in the same manner as a male/female couple?  Can you work there?  If the answer is yes, then I don't see the discrimination.  

The legal aspects of marriage are separate from this issue... if you can have health care coverage through your work for your partner, if you can collect benefits if they die, if you can go into the hospital room (because you are not recognized as family)... those are distinctly different than - what is marriage defined as?  Do I support same sex marriage?  Just like you can separate hating a sin and loving a sinner, you too can separate the legal and religious aspects of marriage.  HUMANS made it contractual, humans put restrictions around it - GOD defined it.  God ordained it.  God blesses his definition of marriage.  I think the debate here, is really around the definition of marriage.  Sorry if it's not a popular opinion, but God defined it, and I'm following Him....

I may be saying good-bye now to some who are not in agreement with my opinion.  I have friends who are openly gay who may not be my friends anymore.  That's ok.  It's important to stand up for what you believe in... and it's all I'm doing through this post.  My marriage means enough to me to not water it down.  To make it clear that I personally embrace what God told me marriage is.  That I believe what He wrote is what He wanted... and that the bible doesn't change over time.  People are more accepting now of same sex unions... but God's Word never changes and I'm convinced that my definition of marriage is what He intended... because I got it straight from Him.  40 years from now... 100 years from now.... eternity from now one thing will remain.... God's Word and it will never change.

In Christ,

1 comment:

Paula said...

Charity, I'm so tired of the hating too. Disagreement doesn't mean hate. It just doesn't.