So, I believe there is a major area that the Christian community has dropped the ball on. Before I go on, let me say that I believe in the true church and the powerful impact it can have on society. To a hurting world, it is the only source of hope and peace we can run to. It is beyond necessary.
But in the area of reaching out to homosexuals, I believe we have shown the wrath of God, while neglecting the love of God. I must divide, though, the regular churches from the extreme churches. Sure there are those crazy ones, who I refuse to give any credence to, who spew complete hatred on everyone around them. They need more help than I care to write about. It's the normal churches who tend to chastise homosexuals as being sinners that they seemingly know nothing about. Bull-honky! We all are sinners. You go to church...because you're a sinner, not because you're perfect. We go to church because we acknowledge we need the grace of a loving savior. We go to church because we draw strength from other sinners who walk this journey with us.
This excerpt from a biography on Rich Mullins sums up my thoughts exactly:
I remember one time my friend and I were hiking on the Appalachian trail, and he met some friends of his, so I walked in town. It was about a five-mile walk from the campsite down the trail, down into town. And when I got there I went into a restaurant and I was having a steak, and this guy started talking to me and we had this great conversation. We were having a good time, and he said, "Hey look, it's dark and it's five miles up the road to your campground. Why don't I drive you up there?"
And I said, "Hey, great!"
And so we got in his car, and just as we pulled out from under the last light in town, the guy said, "You know what, I should probably tell you I'm gay."
And I said, "Oh! I should probably tell you I'm Christian."
And he said, "Well, if you want out of the car..."
I said, "Why?"
And he said, "Well, I'm gay and you're Christian."
I said, "It's still five miles and it's still dark."
Then he said, "I thought Christians hated gays."
I said, "That's funny, I thought Christians were supposed to love. I thought that was our first command."
He said, "Well, I thought God hated gays."
And I said, "That's really funny, because I thought God was love."
And then he asked me the big one. He said, "Do you think I will go to hell for being a gay?"
Well, I'm a good Hoosier, and I puckered up to say, "Yes of course you'll go to hell for being gay." I got ready to say that, but when I opened my mouth it came out, "No, of course you won't go to hell for being gay." And I thought to myself, Oh my God, I've only been in New Hampshire for one week and I've already turned into a liberal! What am I going to tell this guy now?"
Then I said to him, "No, you won't go to hell for being gay, any more than I would go to hell for being a liar. Nobody goes to hell because of what they do. We go to hell because we reject the grace that God so longs to give to us, regardless of what we do."
~Rich Mullins, His Life and Legacy by James Bryan Smith