Monday, August 11, 2008

More "Jesus-Fire"

I wrote my friend back. Here's his response:
You know I love you, I hope. Once you saved my semester by helping me get back on my feet my junior year when I came and stayed with you for a week. You've been such a loving friend, always remembering my b-day. You really know the love of God man. It really doesn't matter how long the backstory is, does it? [Joe Moderate], come back to us. I'm calling you back. I know about straying, but it's God's power that sets us free, not the wisdom of the world. So you tried what the church fed you, counseling, drugs. Its the Holy Spirit that sets us free. He's the only way. You know this, but its time to give Him a try. Sometimes the church doesn't know if they believe that or should really just rely on the world's wisdom. I speak from total experience that its only the Lord's power. Give me a call sometime and we'll pray and catch up. What did you want me to say? I love you so much man. The Lord has such a future for you. It's nothing like the future the enemy had you convinced of when we used to talk on the phone a couple years ago [he's referring to the year of depression and suicidality I went through at the tail end of my 5 years of ex-gay therapy]. It's true man. I'm telling you because I love you. Come home [Joe].
Hmm. This may be weirder than I thought. I guess I need to tell my friend that I don't feel "away from home" with regards to God. And I'm not miserable. And I've been off of medication for two years now.


seithman said...

If you're still talking to him, then I can only say that you probably have far more patience than I do.

I do hope you manage to work things out and maintain a friendship, though.

Peterson Toscano said...

How often have I gone round and round with folks hoping to lure me back to the love of Jesus all the time refusing to believe that I already am at peace with God.

Whenever someone will not or cannot listen to my personal journey, they disrespect the process I carefully and thoughtfully pursued. When they repeat the same call to repentance, no matter how sweetly worded, what they actually practice is spiritual and religious abuse.

Sometimes they simply need to be called out on what they are doing. They see themselves in an elevated place of authority, keepers of the truth, standing over misguided and darkened sinners. This is abusive. And I question if it is even about love. Sounds like it is more about maintaining power and assuaging fears.

D.J. Free! said...

hmmm. reminds me of a recent incident at my school. a faculty member (who knew me when i was a student and president of the Christian organization on campus) recently asked if i'd step in and help out w/ that organization again. when i wrote her back to tell her that i wasn't sure i'd be the best fit, b/c i've come out of the closet, and i felt many of the students would have an issue with that, she wrote me back saying she'd be remiss if she didn't admonish me about my lifestyle, and encouraged me to read Romans 1.

flabbergasted doesn't even BEGIN to describe my emotional response! i mean, seriously?? Romans 1?? "oh gee, i hadn't come across that one yet! but now that i've read it, i totally see what you're saying! i shouldn't be gay!!"

wtf? why do people insist on patronizing us - as if we did not come to thoughtful, prayerful decisions?

fear. fear that their worldview might come crashing down. that's why. i know it, b/c it's how i used to be not long ago.

but hey, if i can change, and grow, and humble myself . . . certainly it's not beyond the scope of possibility that others might too, right? :)