Faith first, then proof
I was not gung ho about attending a bachelorette party for a woman about to marry her female fiancée, and received a note from a dear family member to that effect. I wrote back thus:
“I got your note. I have always liked Peggy Sue [not her real name], still do. People assume that if they cannot have what they want, things will go badly for them and they can never be happy. You may be thinking this about Peggy Sue. But this is because we mortals are not able to imagine the outcome of another course. Who knows the end of the road not taken? We have no idea of the grace that God would give to Peggy Sue if she chose, at the cost of dying to self, to follow the paths of life He knows as our Creator.
“And the Word of God is very clear about homosexuality. It is a grand delusion (Romans 1) visited on a whole population by the powers of darkness. Look at poor Bruce Jenner, what a number the darkness has done on him. It is the same with abortion: People imagine that if they cannot have one, they cannot possibly be happy and their lives will be ruined forever. What a failure of imagination.
“But no one can know, unless he takes the first step, what God has in store for those who love him. As Dietrich Bonhoeffer wrote in The Cost of Discipleship; ‘Only the man who follows the command of Jesus single-mindedly, and unresistingly lets his yoke rest upon him, finds his burden easy, and under its gentle pressure receives the power to persevere in the right way. The command of Jesus is hard, unutterably hard, for those who try to resist it. But for those who willingly submit, the yoke is easy, and the burden is light. “His commandments are not grievous” (I John 5:3).’
“In other words, do we want to find Jesus’ commands and yoke easy and His burden light? Then let us stop resisting them. We think this is not fair. We think we want evidence beforehand that His yoke will be easy and His burden light, and then we will come. But this is life on our own terms. It can never be. The command is faith, and that means stepping out first and getting the proof afterward.”
As for my family member, my preference is for reconciliation. But I am also mindful that those who choose to follow Christ will find that their enemies will be the members of their own household (Matthew 10:36). That also is a road whose grace-studded miles we must believe in, even when we cannot yet imagine it.
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