What if I told you that I've sat down at the piano to accompany a singer (or 7) who happens to not be straight? And that I'm a professing Christian?
What if I told you that I've broken bread with some brothers and sisters in Jesus who I love very much, and that they happen to not be straight? And that I'm still a professing Christian?
What if I told you that I love members of my own family the same way I've always loved them . . . and that they happen to not be straight? And that they are professing Christians? And that I am a professing Christian?
What if I told you all of that . . . and told you that it was true . . . that I've served, fed, cared for, and shared community with folks who happen to not be straight? And that I'm a Christian? And that most of the folks I'm referencing are also Christians?
Would you still be my friend?
Would you still bake me a cake?
Would you still come help me if I were in trouble?
Would you offer me medical assistance if I were bleeding?
Would you want it to be stated legally that I had a right to these things - just like it's a legal assumption that you would have access to these things?
Hi, I'm Sarah Tullock. I write songs and teach music. And I'm a United Methodist. I am just like you - a shadow of the beautiful thing that humanity was before it got broken. Our brokenness is evidenced in our misunderstanding of each other. Our brokenness is evidenced in our desire to hurt each other. Our brokenness is written all over our obsession with judgement and self righteous behavior. I have that sickness, too, friends.
We are so often like the one who fell down before us - prideful. We want to be the best and the brightest, and we can't be aware of the presence of God when we are so much focused on our own goodness.
All of the questions I asked you at the top of the page? . . . those are true things. I have served, loved, fed, and shared community with folks who happen to not be straight. And these same people have done the same for me. Imperfect me - they have loved me, fed me, and offered help to me when I've needed it.
Beloved (because you are beloved by God) - Don't be fooled by the world. It will tell you, over and over, that exclusivity makes you better at the things you aspire to. This attitude has become large in the lives of many of our churches. It has been large there before. From the beginning of time, perhaps. And this Jesus comes to the tax collecting man hiding in a tree . . . because he is short in his humanity . . . . and he says, "Come down from there. Eat dinner with me."
I don't care what you think about whether being homosexual is right or wrong - I'll be your friend either way.
But if one of my brothers or sisters is bleeding or needs your help . . . . if they are looking for a doctor's office for their new baby . . . . if they want to buy something from your store because they need it . . . don't look at them and say, "Your sin makes you untouchable." Because you will miss out. You will miss out on interacting with someone made by God and loved by Jesus. You will miss out on the holy moment that is communion in daily living. Don't miss out.
And in case there was any confusion - I'm the tax collector when I read that story. The wrong one. And it's not because I'm gay or straight. It's because I'm human. Jesus loves me anyway.
Jesus loves you. Go love other people.