As a way to continue the conversations in The Biola Hour, we've invited Becky Mitchell to blog her thoughts after each episode. This is a response to Episode 44 on the tension of grace and truth. Feel free to interact with Becky's thoughts in the comments below.
Dear friends, as we are in a season of reflection and looking for ways to purposefully live there are challenges we must hear. The words may feel old and stale, often repeated or simply stated leaving each one of us with a charge that we have forgotten by the next day. For me, the words asking me to change were of learning the difference between acceptance and agreement as Dr. Caleb Kaltenbach said.
What did you hear? What did you feel when he shared how his mother told him, “Christians hate gay people?” These words are ones I am used to hearing, and whether the same might be true for you I ask that you think for a moment. As I thought, the words became ones that should have grieved me.
The choices, the actions, of Christians in the two churches Kaltenbach noted raised sadness and praise the Lord exclamations. Happily we heard the news of Kaltenbach’s parents becoming Christians and having church people care for these individuals. But the first news was one of denying an individual because of their relationship choice. The suffering of individuals from the hate of other individuals, as Kaltenbach said.
The painful mistreatment of people quickly scrolled through my head. Swipe. I will process that one later. Yet the words appear, “Slow down.” I cannot ignore the pain of the LGBTQ+ community members. To be rejected without even being known. To have to protest for the right to exist in a law. And so many aspects, life moments beyond these.
Along the top shelf of my desk the first quote spoke of every choice being one for life or death. For Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. the choice was life for the other individual—the one who spit on him. For me, the hopeful choice of life, of loving not based on disagreed actions. How will you love?