The Coming-Out Gospel
“I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel—not that there is another gospel, but there are some who are confusing you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ.”
-Galatians 1:6-7 (New Living Translation)
I had the honor of leading last Tuesday’s Young Adult Small Group Bible Study, and during our time together we read over the opening lines of Paul’s letter to the Galatians. As we worked through Paul’s challenging words to the church at Galatia, I kept coming back to the verses above, specifically the part about “perverting” the gospel of Christ.
When I think about the gospel, I think about what some refer to as the “Good News:” the concept that Jesus came to earth to reconcile us to God and to each other. I think about how Christ came not just with a spiritual message of redemption but of a message of love that is transformational, revolutionary, and liberating. And I think about how that type of love has manifested in my life.
As a gay-identified man, my transformational experience was when I finally accepted my gay identity. I had known that I was different for a long a time, I had tried unsuccessfully to “pray the gay away,” but it wasn’t until I looked up one morning at my bedroom ceiling and finally told myself “I’m gay….so what? I guess it could be worse.” And it was with those slightly self-deprecating words that I spoke the gospel into my own life: I was no longer going to hide or lie. I was going to live in the transformational, revolutionary, and liberating love that was given to me by my Creator God.
I was not going to accept the perversion, the lie that has been perpetuated about my sacred worth by so many people and institutions who claim to speak on God’s behalf. Instead I will work to speak the gospel to those in my family, my church, my community, and my world. That, for me, is what the season of Pride is all about.
This month we will celebrate this gospel truth of Pride at Church of the Village. We are blessed to have a community of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, and straight allies who believe in the gospel of radical, all-inclusive love that has been made freely available to all of God’s children. Each week in June we will feature at least one person’s story–each with their own beautiful Good News to share. As we read these stories, may we reflect on how this gospel transforms, revolutionizes, and liberates our lives.
Please join us at the Church of the Village during the entire month of June for LGBT Pride Month activities including small group Bible study, Sunday morning Pride testimonies , dedication of the PFLAG plaque, and Pride Parade Witness.