I published this on Facebook two years ago. At times I look back at what I have written and question my wording, other times I look back and see a fire that I never want to lose. This is a fire I never want to lose.
The town I grew up in was tolerant in a way I don't see often today. We accepted that others had different views than ours, even if we didn't accept their views. It didn't matter who needed help, my family would pitch in to help. That is the Christian way.
I was never taught to ask if someone was homosexual, adulterous, a liar, or anything else. I was taught to love my neighbor and my enemy. In fact, I didn't know of a single homosexual in my graduating class until friending them on Facebook and seeing it in their posts. Charlie was among my friends, Gordon someone I admired, and Dani was a sassy girl that humored me. Things that they did never mattered to us in my hometown. Not once.
I had a black sister since before I can remember. She wasn't my actual sister, just one of many that we adopted. I can honestly say that it never hit me until sometime in high school that she was different. The thing is, she wasn't. She was no different. Her skin may have been darker than mine, but it never mattered to me or my family. Not once.
Things are different today. The media is louder. More in our faces. Maybe I never realized the controlling voices of the floating heads before I was outside my li'l piece of the Midwest. They cry hate and bigot left and right. Words I never understood until the floating heads showed me what they meant.
Intolerance, they echoed, but not at those that caused problems, not at those that hurt people, not at those that called homosexuals faggots, not at those that called blacks niggers. No, they screamed it at Christians that said that Jesus was the way, that we all need Him that made us.
These people are the lovers that still stop and help a stranger. These are those with compassion enough to drop their privileged lives in America to travel to Cambodia, Croatia, and Bulgaria to help the widows and the orphans, building homes and spreading Hope.
The talking heads bring them into the spotlight and give them the Litmus test: Do you believe homosexuality is a sin? They don't care about anything else. And once the answer they already have is given, they shred them for being intolerant, bigotrous, and hateful. It's followed by every media channel echoing the same decree.
This is not America. This America scares me.
I shudder at night, fearing that if I speak my faith in the wrong corner that I will lose my job, my livelihood, or worse. But I will never say of my Lord "I don't know Him." I fear my Lord over all else.