• The most right thing

    January 20, 2012

    A lesson learned last night: Never check your email right after seeing Madama Butterfly when you’ve been blogging about homosexuality to a largely religious audience. Things don’t end well, for Butterfly or me.

    Anyhow, a good night’s sleep can work wonders. Woke up feeling great and even laughed a bit for no particular reason. You ever just feel like laughing? It’s a good feeling. For some reason I also had Jack Nicholson from As Good As It Gets stuck in my head. “Sell crazy some place else! We’re all stocked up here!” So many good one liners in that movie. That quote and the finale to Haydn’s London Symphony were pretty much stuck on repeat till I got to work today.

    Before we go any further, a little morning silliness to take care of. “UpChurch” from the comments on these blog posts is not code for anyone I once worked with. That’s a real name. Upchurch. He’s a friend from my Campbell University days. Say “hey,” Jim!

    Really, my friends, you have to stop trying to figure out who’s who and divining what former colleagues of mine might or might not think about my posts. They’ve been entirely supportive of me over the years, even when we’ve disagreed on our views. I’m thankful for them and miss them. Stop being mean, and again, if you sent texts or emails to any of them, you need to go to them, fess up, and apologize. Today, preferably.

    I spent a bit of time last night and this morning thinking about where to go from here. My old therapist’s voice came back to me. He used to always ask, “Matt, what do you want to do?” He would ask me because I have a need-to-please flaw in my makeup. It’s not that I need people to agree with me, it’s just that I feel like I’ve done something wrong if they don’t. That’s obviously a problem when engaging this topic. As one friend reminded me last night, you can’t walk into a bees’ nest and expect them to offer you honey. So, I’ve tried tuning out everything and everyone on both sides and just asking, “What do I want to do here?”

    I once heard a pastor who had a curious giggle say that he always liked to ask himself, “What is the most right thing I can do in this situation?” That question and Jesus’ message that we should do for others what we’d like them to do for us keep rolling around in my mind. I would hope if it was even possible that I was wrong in my thinking, and if that thinking was potentially enslaving others to a law God did not intend they live under, that someone would come forward with information to that effect. And I would hope that I would at least entertain the information humbly, even if in the end I disagreed with what I was hearing. And I would hope that if I was the one actually enslaved, someone would speak up for me, and to me.

    The fact is, I’ve read things over the last couple years that most people, Christian and otherwise, have never heard. Things that almost certainly influenced the apostle Paul’s writings. Things that might influence how we interpret what he and others have said regarding homosexuality–if we only knew. Is it right for me not to share them just because some people won’t like or agree with what they hear? Would I want someone else to keep that information from me, especially when that someone once publicly shared an opposing view?

    I really can’t see the harm in saying what I’ve read and been thinking about. I can see the harm in not sharing and letting others make up their own minds. So that is what I will do. I won’t do it perfectly. I’ll make mistakes at times as I did yesterday. I’ll overstate a point here, and poorly communicate a point there. So be it. As Annie Dillard told a fellow writer once, God has always known it’s the best we could do. We’re forgiven in advance.

    To try to limit the craziness, I’ve gone back to my original idea of allowing no comments, period. So, if I did it right, I’ve turned off the ability to post comments on this website. If you have a question as we go along, you can email me through the contact page on this site, but, honestly, I probably won’t be responding much.

    I think that’s it for now. More soon.

    Posted in: The Gay Posts

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