So I saw Ellen’s latest speech on Mississippi and North Carolina and am super conflicted. For background on the story, businesses are now legally allowed to deny services to members of the LGBT community based on religious reasons. There are so many things to unpack.
As I watched the speech, I could hear my legalistic conservative friends say how everything she says is blasphemy because she’s homosexual, but the human side of me grieved for someone who was fired for their personal beliefs that didn’t harm anyone.
I feel like Christianity has become an exclusive club that turns away differing opinions. When I look at Jesus, the guy didn’t just casually hang out with social outcasts—he made them His best friends. His disciples weren’t worship leaders or high school pastors; they were tax collectors and hippies. I was thinking this last week how uncomfortable a friend of mine would be in my Bible study if they weren’t a Christian, and something about that just feels wrong.
Now I believe the Gospel is true, and God tells us what to do to protect us from pain and broken relationship with Him, which is the ultimate source of joy. This means I believe homosexuality is a sin. With that said, I have multiple friends who are homosexual, who are transgender and who battle other things I believe are sins just like I do. My hope for those friends of mine isn’t for them to stop sinning, it’s to fall in love with Jesus. Give me one more paragraph before you start yelling at me that they’re the same thing.
You don’t get over pornography by just not watching it. Porn is just a symptom of a bigger issue. You get over porn by realizing how great Jesus is and seeing how porn breaks that relationship with Him, and the more you love Him, the more you hate the idea of hurting that relationship. To want my gay friends to just stop being gay is wanting them to live a life that I approve of; to want them to read a Bible and talk about Jesus is to want them to live a life that He approves of.
Here’s the other thing. I love Ellen. Again, I can already hear the legalistic conservatives planning ways to kick me out of the church. Do I agree with her lifestyle? No. Does that matter to her? No. Guess what, my dad loves to hunt. I could never shoot a living animal without ugly crying afterwards. Does this mean I love my dad less because he does something I don’t agree with? Not even a little bit! I love that he’s passionate about it, I love that he’s very honorable in how he does it, and I LOVE how the meat tastes afterwards! People want me to hold Ellen to my standards or my faith when she doesn’t identify with my faith. Seems weird.
It also feels like we’ve started to confuse sexual identity with overall identity. When someone asks you “who are you?” or “what do you do?” do you respond with “I do straight things with my husband”? No! You probably say you’re a mom, you’re a teacher, you’re an artist. You describe yourself by your passions, not what gender you’re sexually attracted to.
Ellen is a homosexual, but to stop the conversation there is a serious injustice to who she is as a person and very disrespectful. She’s a comedian who makes millions laugh every day, she’s someone who made it her profession to bless other people, and she’s someone who stands up for those without a voice. If you ask me, that sounds like she has a lot more Christian qualities than the group wanting to burn her because of her sexual preference. I hate that I feel like I have to explain myself when I’m talking to a group of Christians and I say that I love Ellen. She’s a loveable person. It makes sense to love her.
Now for the law change. I think it’s LUDICROUS for a restaurant to refuse service to someone because they’re gay or trans. I, as a Christian, wouldn’t eat at an establishment that would do that. Now if there’s a gay couple who would like to get married in a Christian church (Which why would you want to do that if you’re gay? That’s like someone from PETA wanting to get married in a butcher shop … doesn’t make sense) I totally understand and would defend the church’s decision to decline. They believe opposite things!
People get so mad at a church for not performing gay marriages, but why aren’t we asking why gays want to get married in a church in the first place?!?! You disagree with their doctrines! There are a TON of places to get married. It seems like the only reason to push the issue of the church is to create problems and sensationalize a situation to make yourself look like a victim. I’m a Christian, so I wouldn’t be mad if a Buddhist temple wouldn’t let me get married there.
Here’s the summary: I love Jesus, I love Ellen and I love my dad. I don’t think my love for Jesus would justify me hating someone; in fact, I think it does the opposite. I love Jesus, and because of His love for me I love Ellen, a woman made in His image.
If you’re an Ellen fan too, you’ll love this story about the time she gave $500,000 to a school in need.