This will be a new feature in my blog. It is an attempt to respond to those within the Christian faith who seem to be extremely vocal about thier opinions as if they represent all of us. So for those of you who like to use LOUD WORDS to get your point across often mixed with fear and anger I just want to try and politely respond to your ideas and ask you in a very kind way to please be quiet . . please!
There is this website I subscribe to in town here just for the sake of enjoyment to see what the hard right is protesting these days to force the culture to be more "Christian" I suppose. The latest wave of fear was the "Day of Silence" that apparently is a day that the GLBT clubs across the country use to bring attention to being bullied, picked on and mistreated on their campuses. Of course, this website sees it as a way of pushing the "homosexual agenda" on our impressionable kids. Here is a snippet from the e-mail I received:
3/5/08 - If your child's school observes the homosexual sponsored "Day of Silence,"...
If your child's school observes the homosexual sponsored "Day of Silence," keep your child at home April 25.Friday, April 25, several thousand schools across the nation will be observing "Day of Silence (DOS)." DOS is a nationwide push to promote the homosexual lifestyle in public schools. AFA is joining other family-oriented groups in urging parents to keep their children at home that day if their local school is participating in the DOS project. By remaining silent, the intent of the pro-homosexual students is to disrupt the classes while promoting the homosexual lifestyle. DOS is sponsored by an activist homosexual group, the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN). DOS leads the students to believe that every person who identifies as a homosexual, bisexual or cross-dresser is a victim of ongoing, unrelenting harassment and hate. Students are taught that homosexuality is a worthy lifestyle, homosexuality has few or no risks, and individuals are born homosexual and cannot change. Those who oppose such teaching are characterized as ignorant and hateful bigots.
What should parents do? Check with your local school principal to see if your child's school will be participating in DOS. If the school is participating, notify other parents about DOS and ask them to join in keeping their children out of school on that day.
Please help us get this information into the hands of as many people as possible by forwarding it to your family and friends.
Sincerely, Donald E. Wildmon, Founder and ChairmanAmerican Family Association
Now a few things here:
First of all, I checked out the Day of Silence website and I did not see anything about enforcing some agenda on our kids. In fact, it is trying to bring attention to the bullying that frequently is allowed towards many of these teens. The tone of this whole article is very disturbing when you consider how Jesus would have reacted. There is a very strong "us vs. them" attitude filled with fear all throughout the article. I would believe that Jesus would have reacted to these students in the same way he reacted to the woman whom the Pharisees caught in adultery and brought to him. He protected her from those who wanted to hurt and kill her, he showed love, grace and compassion to her, and then told her to go and sin no more. I think that we need to take this very approach with all people. We should protect anyone who is hurt, troubled, being bullied, regardless of who they are. It is our job to stand up for those who are mistreated. No one is being forced to endorse a lifestyle they may not agree with. I think that based on what I have seen that this day is about, I seriously wonder if those who profess a Christian faith should be the very ones out front defending a safe environment for everyone at their school regardless of who they are.
Secondly, I personally have never heard about this "Day of Silence" ever until Christians began freaking out about it. I have not heard about this from any of my students, at all! Once again the hyper-vocal Far-Right of the church induced fear-mongering among their conglomerates. I have not heard anyone else talking about this! Now the Bible tells us that perfect love drives out fear. We should not be operating out of a heart of fear but out of a heart of love.
Third, does not Scripture tell us that judgment begins with the house of God? At this point in history, there is not much difference in the sexual practices of those in the church when compared to those outside of the church! And anyone who has read any Barna book knows this! Divorce, broken homes, abuse, etc. Maybe, just maybe, if we really attempted to live like the "salt and light" that Jesus calls us to in the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5-7 then it is possible that we just might have some weight to what we say because our lives would demonstrate a redemptive, compassionate, loving, sacrificial attitude in our relationships that would restore ourselves and those around us to wholeness as a Christ-follower. I am convinced that if our lives demonstrated this kind of love and grace, then those outside of the faith would be attracted to it and embrace it for themselves. But when we use fear, hate and anger in our rhetoric while our lifestyles offer absolutely nothing radically different then, well, no wonder we all come off looking like judgemental, hypocritical, homophobes.
Fourth, I find it very interesting that this organization has the Jesus fish symbol with the word "American" plastered across it. Are these two things not oxymoronic? On one hand, the Jesus fish symbol was used as a way to secretly mark the meeting place of Christians during times of intense persecution from their government. But this organization feels free to blend the two into one. It is time to realize that America is NOT a Christian nation and it has never been, ever. That is exactly what our founding fathers put in place so that the government could not establish a religion over the people. The only way that a godly Christian nation will ever be established will be when Jesus himself returns and establishes his kingdom. Any attempt all throughout history to try and establish a "Christian nation" ended in a complete disaster. The world will always act like the world! We need to allow the Holy Spirit to transform US from the inside out and stop trying to change others from the outside-in with fear, anger and hate.
So Donald, I am asking you to please be quiet . . . please! You don't have to do a day of silence if that freaks you out.