That Old Boat
February 28, 2008
Hymn for Homosexuals
February 28, 2008

The world collapses; enemies are contracted; wars are begun.

The end seems imminent; it’s suddenly upon us. It has no name, no face, no language. It’s everything and nothing we can imagine. It is human nature and the lack of it; it is humanity suffering and flourishing; it is joy and sadness. It is as creation is: bound for pain, built with pleasure.

When life is excruciating and there is no respite, where do I look?
When I’m lost and empty and nothing will satisfy me, where do I find comfort?
When I have hurt and destroyed beyond what can be restored, who do I turn to for mercy?

My faith; my Christ; my God.

But this is not a commonality; it can’t be assumed; it can’t be taken for granted.

And yet, I know without a doubt that whatever suffers, breaks, shivers with disease, and collapses, it will be restored, healed, repaired, and rejuvenated. I know this because it is what I believe. And through belief, I know it.

I need to bring this to people: in a form as palatable as a food, as visceral as sex, and enveloping as love. I need it to be known, to be cherished, to be shared. This is what I’m called to do.

But many won’t even listen to faith, let alone God, let alone Christ. There are histories that have shunned, expelled, excluded. For centuries. And what can I do to correct that? Am I meant to?

While Jesus is the Son of God for me; while I pray to Christ for strength and forgiveness; while the Christian faith has guided me to intentional spirituality, it cannot be this way for everyone. It will not work for everyone. Not in the way that it has worked in me.

I know that others can find spirituality; I have seen it manifest in a kiss, in kind words, in devotion where devotion does belong, in sacrifice where withholding would have been affirmed. But many do not put the name Jesus to these acts; they do not say they are inspired by religion, by faith, or by God.

So be it. If I am going to bring true, unbridled, passionate spirituality to people, it must be in a way they understand. I must step outside my own faith; I must live according to their lives. I must know what they know, suffer what they suffer, think what they think, see what they see.

I must, by experience, bring my passionate spirituality to them. I must show them it is possible. And as they let me do this, entering into the vulnerabilities of their lives, they will see what crossing borders can accomplish. They will follow—not because they must, or because they are asked, but because it is what spirituality compels.

As they follow, so too shall I. As they learn, so too shall I. As they believe, so too shall I.

And it will be uncomfortable. It already is. And it will be lonely. It already is. And it will be necessary. It always has been.

With God’s help I will succeed. And for no mission, no purpose other than this bold truth:

I love humanity.

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