How do we do this and not compromise our morals? How do we love others struggling with say alcohol, anger, gossip, pre-marital sex, pornography and the list goes on. Is loving someone struggling with same sex attractions any different? We seem to do okay with loving others with “regular” sins, but for some reason we think loving the homosexual sends the message that their sin is okay. First thing we have to do is see the person separate from their sin. We are to love the one struggling unconditionally. Ask God to help you see them as He sees them and then pray without ceasing for that person.
Pray for opportunities to talk about Jesus and how much He loves them. Do not focus on their homosexuality, but keep drawing them to Jesus by the example of your life with God. Show them a relationship with the Lord Almighty they will want. It is not our jobs to save them and set them free, but it is our responsibility to love them to Jesus. The pressure is on God to do the rest.
Some sins have consequences that are more serious than others, but ALL sin separates us from God. Romans 3:23 says “…for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God…” Homosexuality seems worse than hatred, but both hurt our relationship with God. The consequences are more serious for homosexuality, but they are both sin. If you are having trouble loving people struggling with this sin, give God your heart and ask Him to soften it. Read I Corinthians Chapter 13 on love. Substitute the word God in for love and listen to how it reads. Stanton Jones of Wheaton College said this: “If you cannot empathize with the homosexual person because of fear of, or revulsion to them, then you are failing our Lord.”
For me, I just wanted to be loved unconditionally. I needed to be loved just the way I was. I was so afraid of rejection that I could not tell anybody of my struggle. Eventually my unwanted desires grew so strong that I gave into them. Then I started thinking my sin was not so bad after all. When we keep giving into sin, it becomes like our favorite pair of worn jeans—the more you wear them, the more comfortable they become. But God kept gently touching my heart. He has given us a wonderful gift of free will. I had to make a decision to respond to His love by reaching out for help, or I could just keep living my lifestyle the way I was and make it seem right. See, it was Jesus’ love through others that brought me back.
Sometimes love boundaries will have to be set. For example, if you have a friend who asks you to buy a 12 pack of beer and they struggle with alcoholism, you would tell them you love them, but you would not buy the beer. Let’s look at a situation involving homosexuality. Say your sister is having a civil union ceremony with her partner and you are invited.
How would you lovingly set a boundary that does not compromise truth? Sis, I love you very much, but you know I do not believe this is the best Jesus has for your life. I will not be attending your ceremony, but I would love for us to go to lunch next week.
There are numbers of different situations that can occur. Pray. Ask for wisdom and discernment from Christian friends, but most of all set the boundaries in love. If you have any situations you want to talk about, please feel free to blog.
God bless you all!