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I too would prefer 'a system where my existence is recognized, not as an
aberration contrary to nature but as a natural part of things' -- but not
until that system is available for everyone else. Years ago I could have
easily limited my movements to the increasing number of places that would
provide me just that and cavort only with those who respect me. Instead I
prefer to come up against the hard places, not out of a maschochistic
delight in difficulty, but out of an arrogant confidence that the Word can
be enfleshed again in us as agents of change.
That struggle is not for everyone. Those of us who are called to it are
blessed, but our gifts and our contributions are no better than the gifts
and contributions of those who sit in the corner and nurse their wounds.
In blessed lighter moments, I sometimes think of myself as a spiritual
Flasher for Jesus! I am fascinated that given all the other talents God
gave me, God has made the most use of the gift of spiritual exhibitionism.
I sometimes wonder whether She might have been just as effective and less
wasteful of the other gifts had she just put me on the campus and in the
church not as a professor and writer, but as a bum wearing sandwich boards
painted, "Queer! For Christ's Sake!" In another life I must have been
the fat lady at the circus.
The good part is that the journey is so much fun. I understand fully what
Jesus meant when he stressed that in times such as these we are to
"Rejoice and be exceedingly glad."
I choose not to be bitter, and I am grateful to have that choice.
Bitterness would enervate most of what I am called to do. Not
everyone has the choice to reject it.
I do not have the luxury to ask God to "Take me, mold me, shape me, use
me" and then to complain when She does. Dr. King did not sit in the
Birmingham Jail saying, 'O how terrible of you to put me here' but instead
said, 'This is the right place for me to be in an unrighteous state.'
Pray that I will be faithful to my calling. May God use your gifts
mightily wherever God puts you. You're young. Expect God to put you in
lots of different places at different points in your journey. Enjoy each
as if it is the only one.
And if you have gotten this far, pray that I won't keep getting more and
more long-winded in my old age. And I thought my Dad went on and on....