A hardy October hello from up here in the soon to be frozen north. In Canada—just to inform my American readers—Thanksgiving is celebrated about six weeks earlier than it is in the USA. For us, this means that we have a nice little break each year to tear down the garden and rake up the leaves in preparation for the first big snow that often comes in late October or early November. My family and I are heading to the good old USA for a long weekend, but I wanted to make a quick post before leaving so as to alert everyone to a growing movement that many if not all LEs can get behind.
It seems that many liberal and evangelical Christians have encountered a similar challenge when talking with their gay and lesbian friends or faced the even tougher challenge of being gay or lesbian and an evangelical Christian. The challenge grows out of the fact that the mere possibility of uniting those categories into a single life seems like a contradiction to many. A “gay or lesbian evangelical” rings in some ears like the phrases “square circle” or “progressive tea-partyer.” But that apparent contradiction is being challenged more frequently these days by more and more evangelical Christians who are not content to cede the evangelical label to preachers of hatred and bigotry.
Case in point: notalllikethat.org.
Of course the group takes its name from the apologetic turn of phrase that many evangelicals have had to utter over the years. How often have you found yourself having to apologize for the hateful things you’ve heard uttered in the name of Christian values? How often have you found yourself shaking your head in disgust and embarrassment at the filth that so often passes as “pro-family” rhetoric in evangelical circles? How often have you felt ashamed of your church or the evangelical name because of those who have abused the Gospel for cheap political points of simple chauvinism? I think that many of us have, and it helps to know that we are not alone—we are not all like that.
Notalllikethat.org, borrowing a strategy form the earlier “It Gets Better” Project, is working to gather the voices of tolerant, affirming, loving and committed Christians all in one place and in an accessible format. Through personal video testimonials they remind us once again how diverse Christians are and how important it is that we not let the loudest and most extreme among us have the floor and dominate the debate. It’s worth your time to check it out, even if you are not a proponent of full LGBT equality. At the very least, you’ll learn more about the wonderful world of Christian diversity and find that you just might not be alone because it is true…we are not all like that, no matter what “that” may be.