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Closets

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“I would rather be judged before God as being an honest human being. If I am in any way unpleasing in his sight, I can only hope and pray that he gives me the opportunity to find who I am supposed to be.”

- Popular Christian music artist (who recently “came out”) Jennifer Knapp on CNN

So another entertainer comes out of the closet…big deal. Isn’t it time that people stop the incessant and salacious discussions of homosexuality? I would think society would be tired of it by now. I would hope that at least the Church (i.e. Christians) has evolved past that.

Homosexuality is a deeply personal and, more often than not, deeply painful struggle. It should be a non-issue on an individual level, met only with compassion and respect if the subject is raised by a person opening up as such. Consider what Jesus would have said to another sitting by him. Would he focus on the individual’s soul or on his differences, his physical anatomy or his capacity to connect with others? Love covers a multitude of “sins” and promotes unity, doesn’t it? To many of us, homosexuality is no more a sin than being one who prefers a dog to a cat as a pet. It’s simply a matter of one’s natural inclination; neither chosen nor preferred, it just is.

It makes me wonder what “well-meaning” people today would have “innocuously” whispered behind the back of Paul, who discouraged marriage and complained of his thorn but never quite named it. I wonder further what their “innocently voiced” opinions amongst themselves would have been of the relationship between David and Jonathan, or even between John and Jesus. I can only imagine that the current climate has grown homophobic in the sense that older writings scarcely mention homosexuality and, if so, somewhat indifferently. This is despite our beliefs that we claim to have grown more culturally sensitive and diverse in our contemporary views. It’s quite the contrary, actually, since, with this growth, our curiosity has given rise to a sort of freedom to present topics in conversations, usually slid in by way of questions, that are outright offensive and inappropriate. The questions seem to point and whisper, “You are different. Defend yourself, say you are not.”

Pondering and probing into another’s sexuality, whether to his face or behind his back, is not only uncivil but sinful and proud, as Christ called us to self-examination, not to put others under the moral microscope. Seeking to “out” another or to suppose and force discussion of a lifestyle that he does not openly relate to others is not only sinful but harmful, and definitely not a call for a Christian.

Sexual orientation is only a very small portion of each very complex soul that God values. It’s time that Christians adopt this view.

Each person has his own closet. So I find it quite strange that we “Christians” force some closet doors open to be rummaged through and aired out while others sit without upset, dusty and settled—like gossip, exclusivity, and haughtiness. I guess it depends on how interesting the closet’s contents are—and which bad habits work in favor of keeping the rumor mill moving and fingers pointing, keeping our “religion” interesting so the journey doesn’t seem so very monotonous, tedious, so puritanically bland.

So the next time I witness another attempting (however coyly) to pry open a door in order to “out” the contents of someone else’s closet, I fully intend to ask if she would like to open her own and allow others to take a tour, deducing what they may of her life and taking away only those things they wish to expose.

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