Sunday, May 19, 2013

What Was I Thinking?

I don't typically use my blog to discuss political stuff all that much anymore but I do want to make mention of some things for the archives so when I look back I can see where we were and where I was in my thinking.

Talk about overplaying a hand. Same-sex marriage in Minnesota was (until very recently) illegal but that wasn't good enough for Republicans in our state. Nearly two years ago a Republican-dominated statehouse voted to place a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage on the 2012 ballot. Not only did that effort fail but an unintended consequence of the constitutional amendment was that it also caused a huge amount of support for its defeat which ultimately led to a new proposal to allow for same-sex marriage; a proposal which became law this past week. It's likely that same-sex marriage was an eventuality here but because of the over-reach of Republicans in our legislature it clearly came about much faster than it otherwise would have.

Our politics of late have become as divisive as I can ever recall. It's troubling because we have so many other pressing matters that could better use our attention than where we're directing our focus. It's clear as anything to me that all we're watching play out here with respect to Benghazi and the IRS scandal is an attempt by Republicans to try and hamstring Obama during the remainder of his presidency. Again, I'm left trying to understand how I was once a supporting member of that party not all that long ago.

I think it's safe to say that Christians in America overwhelmingly side with the Republican party. Yeah, it would be nice if politics and religion didn't intertwine but they absolutely do. What confuses me most is how those who claim to follow a passive man named Jesus are the ones who are the first to want to send our kids off to war in some foreign country. They're the ones leading the charge to abolish the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) and they're the ones who want an obscene amount of guns out on the street. Am I painting with too broad a brush? I don't really think so.

What about any of the above is reflective of Jesus? How do those who identify themselves as Christians justify those positions?

I took a long walk a few days ago and spent a lot of my time in thought about some of the issues I'm struggling with and how they relate to my faith. I found myself once again trying to reconcile God of the Old Testament with Jesus in the New Testament and trying to understand how they could possibly be one in the same as my faith teaches.

I can't for the life of me understand how God (in the OT) could instruct the Israelites to wipe out masses of humanity, women and children included, so that they could take over their land while Jesus is instructing us in the NT to love our enemies. There's something seriously flawed there.

I was mentioning these concerns to Tammy a couple nights ago over a glass of wine at Ernie's. She's much more willing to overlook these things I'm struggling with while totally believing that it will all make sense when we get to heaven. I don't know.

Our conversation turned to Hosanna and the church's focus on the 'sins' of gays over the sins of the rest of us. She commented that we're both divorced and living in sin according to the Bible. In Mark 10, verses 11-12 Jesus says that “Whoever divorces his wife and marries someone else commits adultery against her. And if a woman divorces her husband and marries someone else, she commits adultery."

Hosanna has always been very firm about their belief that because gays are living openly and in disregard to what the Bible teaches about homosexuality, they can't be assimilated into the church in any sort of position of leadership. How then does that square with Tammy and I living in sin (contrary to what the Bible teaches) while leading a small group for the past several years? There can be no difference but all I get from Hosanna is a big yawn.

Anyway, enough of that.

Work continues on our sun-porch and deck project although rain has definitely been hampering progress.

I had a couple of nice 95 mile rides this past week. Yesterday's ride took me southeast to Kenyon. I was spent when I got home but it was a good tired.

Join me...


Anonymous said...

Kevin, when you reflect back on how you used to think, can that help in understanding now how others (that you disagree with) think? Jesus is not Democrat or Republican. He understands the passion on both sides and loves each one the same...He asks us to do the same. Its not about politics as the world will always march on ...laws here..laws there...injustice here..injustice there. We are not to get caught up in a "faith" of humanity for peace cuz that is worldly peace. True inner peace comes from Jesus and points to the cross. He doesn't want us to figure stuff out, then make a decision on our faith in Him. That wouldn't be faith. He wants us to look to Him in ALL things...:) That is really is. Pray about it Kevin...ask Him to open your eyes on things that are troubling as honest as you can...even in your doubt cuz He already knows its there...:) He doesn't want us to hide anything as it's through our intimacy with Him that He transforms and brings His light in the areas we are conflicted. That is why we say He is a personal Lord. He enters each person's heart ( if one allows Him) and takes each person right where they are shedding light to expose our true selves. and giving us that inner peace...only He can give. I believe your seeking and questions are not meant to keep you in conflict until heaven. He wants and does enlighten our hearts. I believe its a good thing and The Lord is drawing you to Him...pray...:) :)

Kevin Gilmore said...

Thanks, Theresa.

Yes, I often think of how I was once just like those who I'm so disappointed with now. I was quite sure I was right in my thinking and I had no lack of right-wing media that I regularly listened to to confirm my beliefs.

Now that I've been able to step away from all of that noise I've been able to see how utterly wrong I was and how very little of it actually meshed at all with the life that Christ has called us to live.

I'm sure that in years from now I'll look back on where I am today and see where again I was wrong. I'm always open to gaining a more clear understanding.

Thanks for you comments.