If you were a missionary going on a mission trip to another country to share the gospel, what would do to prepare for your trip? Of course, you’d study the language and their culture so that you would have more insight into them as a people group. As missionaries, we are to study the lifestyle, customs and traditions of those we’ll be ministering to. We are to be compassionate like Jesus when we enter another culture.
I attended a Q & A session at a church in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Laurie Krieg was one of the speakers talking about the subject.
An Impossible Marriage
Laurie deals with same sex attraction but is married to her husband who is a male, Matt. Laurie and Matt have authored the book titled “An Impossible Marriage” which I read. She also shares a lot of insights on this subject on her website at www.lauriekrieg.com.
Laurie is a believer in the Bible and that the purpose of life is to bear the image of Christ since we are image bearers of a holy God. Sometimes God calls his people to uncomfortable conversations, especially when it comes to the LGBTQ+ culture today.
As a Christian, I’m trying to learn how to navigate the LGBTQ community with love and grace and that is my goal through this post. Here are some insight from what I’ve learned.
There are those who don’t have God’s Holy Spirit in them and follow their instincts toward ungodly desires. God’s plan for life is always the best plan. Marriage is not the ultimate goal. Reflecting Christ and glorifying Him in all we do is our goal. This can be done as a single person or in marriage. Marriage is best between a man and a woman because God ordained it.
Laurie and her husband Matt have 3 children, 2 girls and a boy. It hasn’t been an easy road for them but Matt and Laurie are honoring God according to his plan and God has been redeeming them and their marriage. Laurie states that if she tries to get her heart needs met in ways outside of God and his good design, it’s not going to work.
But God gives grace freely. God declares us guilty of sin but He does’t condemn us because he took the penalty. John 3:16-17 says “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him.”
So, how do we navigate the LGBTQ culture with love and grace as believers in Christ and through the Bible?” We ALL have to die to self daily. Luke 9:23 says “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.”
God’s best to flourishing in life is to follow biblical truth. Jesus met people where they were at, and we need to meet people where they’re at too. This can be made possible as we show the love of Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit. If we do not begin to engage this next generation, we will lose them to the lies of the enemy who comes to steal, kill and destroy.
Leviticus 18: 1-5
Leviticus 18: 1-5. It says “The Lord said to Moses, “Speak to the Israelites and say to them: ‘I am the Lord your God. You must not do as they do in Egypt, where you used to live, and you must not do as they do in the land of Canaan, where I am bringing you. Do not follow their practices. You must obey my laws and be careful to follow my decrees. I am the Lord your God. Keep my decrees and laws, for the person who obeys them will live by them. I am the Lord.” (Randy’s emphasis)
In Roman’s 1:18-32, God addresses His wrath against ALL sin in humanity. He says “The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.
For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.
Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.
Because of this, God gave them over to shameful lusts. Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.
Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done. They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy. Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.
I Corinthians 6:12-19
I Corinthians 6:12-19 says “I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”—but I will not be mastered by anything. You say, “Food for the stomach and the stomach for food, and God will destroy them both.” The body, however, is not meant for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. By his power God raised the Lord from the dead, and he will raise us also. Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ himself? Shall I then take the members of Christ and unite them with a prostitute? Never! Do you not know that he who unites himself with a prostitute is one with her in body? For it is said, “The two will become one flesh.” But whoever is united with the Lord is one with him in spirit.
Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body. Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.”
Nurture Your Vertical Relationship with Christ
All believers need to nurture their vertical relationship with Jesus. Christ wants us to have oneness with him. When we do, He guides and directs our horizontal relationships with our spouse, children and others, including those who are gay.
The purpose of life is to serve as image bears of a holy God. We need to point others to Him in everything we do and to Jesus as our rescuer. God sometimes invites us into uncomfortable and painful growth. Where do we carry each others burdens? We carry them to Jesus. We should be engaging others with the loving heart of Christ.
As Christ followers, we need to check ourselves for un-repented sin too. Our default attraction is usually toward self and selfishness - which can lead to sin. When Adam and Eve sinned, they broke union with the Father and changed the course of history. Sin grows in isolation, and we all need community. 80% of those who claim the gay lifestyle grew up in the church. 76% are willing to come back. We need to let the Holy Spirit do the convicting, not us. Sin is equal at the cross. There IS NO hierarchy.
4 Things to Do When Examining Different Cultures:
We can consume it,
We can condemn it,
We can critique it, or
We can cultivate it for the Kingdom of God.
Of course, number 4 is the best route. We need to cultivate it for the Kingdom of God.
There is more to this conversation but let’s continue at another time. May God bless you as you navigate the LGBTQ and all cultures with love and grace. For more information about Laurie Krieg and her ministry, go to www.lauriekrieg.com.