Recently I answered the following question for a friend of a friend. The context: they were looking for someone to interview about generally the topic of homosexuality, and specifically within youth ministry and the evangelical church. I thought myself quite clever, but have spent more time thinking about it and would love your thoughts. There is, of course, much more to it, but maybe not?
Q: Say I have a youth group member who has “come out” and decided to tell me: what are some things I should do and should not do?
A: Love them. Like any other kid, love them. Help them love themselves, know they are loved, protect them from harm and danger. Give them resources to care for their bodies and souls. Tell them they are beautiful and loved by God. Give them opportunities to see what God is calling them to do with the gifts they have been given. In short, treat them like any other kid. Because the fact is, they are just another child of God. Whole, beautiful and loved.
I just don’t view being lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender as being an “other” – any different than a kid who is left handed or has red hair and freckles. Its just another gift in my eyes. The sooner we can set aside our differences in Christ, we can focus on what binds us together in Christ; love. The kind that passes all understanding, comprehension or reason.
I am bisexual, my point of view is perhaps a bit different than my gay, lesbian and transgender friends. I believe and act on the belief that people are created in God’s image, not mine. They are whole and beautiful, male and female and in some cases have multiple genders. I believe humankind is meant to do God’s work in the way they have been gifted and called. Our role as the church is to walk along side of people and hold up the God mirror to them, to bless and celebrate what God has done in God’s people.