Lately, especially as I’ve been investigating area churches in the hopes of landing someplace, I’ve noticed a trend. Churches wish to be more “welcoming” to queer folk. That’s even what the church that kicked me out has said. Many churches, it seems, exclude any mention of LGBT issues on their websites and in their FAQs, and one has to call or email and explicitly ask for the church’s position, and even then one might receive a wishy-washy non-answer.
“Jesus would have baked the cake,” I’ve heard some more progressive evangelicals say. But they follow it up with, “after all, he hung out with sinners.”
“It isn’t our place to judge non-Christians. I’d go to the wedding.” But of course, there is something there to be judged…by someone.
And the openly gay Christian? We’re not even talked about. Our very existence poses an insurmountable challenge.
Yesterday a friend and his boyfriend announced their engagement. At first, I basked in the beauty and joy of the occasion, and of course tapped the little heart on the Facebook post. But as I saw other reactions, I became unsettled. People that I know to not be affirming, people who sit in the church I’m banned from Sunday after Sunday…they were also congratulating the couple.
You Christians…you hypocrites!
Would you congratulate someone on leaving their spouse for a lover? Getting away with a lie? Murder? Of course not!
“If they aren’t a believer, then I shouldn’t expect them to live by God’s law.” I agree. But you would never say “Hey, I think embezzling is wrong, but since you aren’t saved, Dude, way to go!” So why do you make an exception for homosexuality?
You don’t get to be the warm, fuzzy, non-judgmental Christian in public while simultaneously believing homosexuality to be a sin. It is a lie.
It is a lie to pretend to be welcoming, and then tell the queer person later that they have to deny or fight who they are.
It is a lie to invite kids to youth group and set them up to be abandoned when they come out.
It is a lie to congratulate a gay couple while simultaneously supporting a church that banned me-or anyone else-for being unashamedly queer.
Oh, I get it. I know you think you’re being loving. You’re not one of those picket-sign holding anti-gay Christians. I was there once, too. “Just treat everyone with respect,” I said. I’m not a terrible person. I love you! But I was wrong, because this is not respect. This is not love. This is dishonesty. This is some sort of religious game of bait and switch.
Right about now you might be wondering how you can be honest about your anti-homosexual stance and not seem like a terrible, hateful person. I mean, good luck with that. But in the meantime, stop using queer people to make yourself feel better about it. We’re not your beards.