We are "Not Just" who we seem to be on this Earthly plane, but so much more. We are ALL children of a loving God who is calling us home to Love. This blog is dedicated to those of us on that journey together…
We can indeed embrace our Christian Faith and our sexuality without conflict or compromise! God created us to live and love in our own unique way… and this uniqueness need not be denied but celebrated! God loves us as we are!
He created each of us to love and be loved as we are and for who we are: be it gay, transgender, lesbian, inter-sexual, bi-sexual, heterosexual or asexual.
The way we love and are loved is not a sin. Being and behaving contrary to who God created us to be, that is what is sinful. Denying our sexuality can force us to live in sin by disconnecting us from His plan for our lives.
We are reconciled to Him by embracing the beautiful person of light and of love that He created us to be. God simply needs each of us to live authentically and never be ashamed of who we are or how we love!
❤️Ann L. McPherson
‘Not Just A Blonde’
*I wrote this in response to what I would want to say to someone who felt their sexual orientation was incompatible with Christianity. It breaks my heart to think someone would feel they have to leave their Faith in order to love.
God is Love, yet how does anyone begin to describe what Love is? Love itself is a bit ambiguous and difficult to fully understand. In the English language “Love” has many different meanings and flavors depending on the context of it’s use. There is the love of passion and obsession, the love of friendship and of family, and… Spiritual Love, the love of God.
Spiritual Love… God’s Love is multi-faceted and somewhat difficult to describe. This Love is a mixture of all good things. Describing this Love is as overwhelming as when we are attempting to describe God.
There are many different ingredients that make up love: kindness, patience, empathy, forgiveness, long-suffering, compassion, hope, humility, acceptance, encouragement, generosity… just to name a few!
I have come to understand this love, God’s Love to be like a bowl of soup with each of Love’s ingredients creating Love’s life-giving sustenance and rich flavor!
Each of our bowls has a slightly different texture and flavor. Our love consists of the same basic ingredients in amounts as unique as each of us!
Your bowl may have a greater amount of patience; mine compassion. Our brother might have a generous amount of humility, your neighbor may demonstrate gracious hospitality and our sister might exude hope!
Love is filled with many ingredients that give Love it’s rich flavor! Each of us can make our own pot and share it with whomever we choose and with whom God calls us to!
We each love differently with slight uniqueness to our recipes. Love is as diverse as each of us and this is reflected in the Love Soup we offer to each other, to ourselves and to the World!
The soup of God’s Love is something we can never get too much of and it warms the soul. Pull up a chair, grab your spoon and feast on some Love soup!
1 Corinthians 13:4-8~
“Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away.” Ephesians 4:2 ~ Be always humble, gentle, and patient. Show your love by being tolerant with one another.
That which is most valuable is not found within this life. Our treasures lie beyond this world in eternity! God asks us to remember that we cannot take anything of Earthly value with us when we die; yet that which has true value will always be ours and will be found there in more abundance!
Our opinions and our views are the lenses from which we perceive the world. Often the power to change our lives lies within us and is not dictated by anything or anyone outside of us! The best way to change our lives is to change our minds. Think about it.
Wether or not being gay is a sin is completely irrelevant! We could debate all day whether or not being gay is a sin. Whether or not it is a sin does not justify why many Christians treat those who identify as LGBT like they are evil-doers deserving of Hell! Many Christians are hypocritically treating these folks in very unloving ways: from fighting against gay marriage to banning LGBT folks from taking leadership positions within their church or even firing them from a job they are Divinely called to do! Before you begin to formulate your debate to justify these actions: read on and consider what I am about to say.
Everybody sins. Everyone. We have preachers preaching and people marrying everyday who are active sinners but do we actively take away their rights or keep them from their Divine calling or even give them a second thought? No!
For the record, I don’t believe (Biblically speaking) that being LGBT is a sin… but, I DO believe there are many other behavioral sins that many Christians are guilty of every single day.
For example: being a glutton is a sin. Admittedly, I am guilty of it. Yet, I was able to marry in a church, by MY pastor! I teach Sunday School and am part of a leadership group within my church! No one seems to care one bit about the fact I carry extra weight or buy too many pairs of shoes. Even with this proof of my transgressions I am accepted as I am and valued for my heart, faith and belief in our One Loving Living God!
I wonder what life might be like if we started judging ALL behavioral sins in the same way? All overweight pastors would be forced to get a medical release to prove they are not overweight due to gluttony! They would be forced to live on a glutton-free diet or risk being defrocked!
Insane thought isn’t it? Yet we do something similar when we believe being LGBT is a sin and we criticize, judge and withhold equal rights from those we are called to love because of that belief.
Question is: why do we in the Christian Faith treat the “sin” of living/being gay so much differently than other behavioral sins?
Answer this and perhaps I can understand how those who believe being gay is a sin justify treating these LGBT accused “sinners” differently than other sinners… and different from ourselves.
❤️Ann ‘Not Just A Blonde’
James 2:10 (ESV)
For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become accountable for all of it. James 4:11-12 (GNT)Do not criticize one another, my friends. If you criticize or judge another Christian, you criticize and judge the Law. If you judge the Law, then you are no longer one who obeys the Law, but one who judges it. God is the only lawgiver and judge. He alone can save and destroy. Who do you think you are, to judge someone else? Romans 14:10-14 (NIV)
You, then, why do you judge your brother or sister? Or why do you treat them with contempt? For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat. It is written:
“‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord,
‘every knee will bow before me;
every tongue will acknowledge God.’”
So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God.
Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in the way of a brother or sister. I am convinced, being fully persuaded in the Lord Jesus, that nothing is unclean in itself. But if anyone regards something as unclean, then for that person it is unclean.
Many of us worry a bit too much about our appearance… and many of us make judgements and conclusions based on another’s. Sometimes these assumptions are right, but this shouldn’t cause us to treat others any differently than we ourselves would want to be treated.
Let’s not continue to live with the lie that appearances matter, when we know God only truly cares about our hearts. How we look, the clothes we wear, the car we drive, the phone we carry, the side of town we live on just doesn’t matter… It’s all Earth stuff. Earth stuff can distract us from what truly matters. Earth stuff can destroy us if we let it.
The next time you get caught up in the Earthy game of appearances remember these verses:
“My brothers, as believers in our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, you must never treat people in different ways according to their outward appearance. Suppose a rich man wearing a gold ring and find clothes comes to your meeting, and a poor man in ragged clothes also comes. If you show more respect to the well dressed man and say to him “Have this best seat here,” but sake of the poor man, “Stand over there, or sit here on the floor by my feet,” then you are guilty of creating distinctions among yourselves and of making judgments based on evil motives.”
May we each stop judging each other and start loving each other no matter what we look like: poor or rich, fat or thin, gay or straight, homely or pretty, smart or simple-minded, acceptable or questionable.
Our hearts were created to love one another as God loves each and every one of us. Our hearts and how we love others are what truly matter to God.
I am not consistently witty nor well-spoken. I struggle with plucking out the best words to use to get my thoughts across in conversation and on the computer screen. Instead, I am stuck with writing things the best I can to produce an essay or a blog post that expresses my thoughts good-enough. I am not being humble, I’m just keeping it real.
Don’t get me wrong, I think I’m doing just fine! I will continue to type away my hearts content for all who care to pause and read. I’m good-enough, and being good-enough will do.
I just have to be good-enough to get my message out. I just have to be good-enough to hold someone’s attention momentarily until my thoughts are shared. I just have to be good-enough to resonate with one the one person God has intended me to touch.
I don’t have to be great… and neither do you. Well, unless of course it is God’s will for us to be. Yes, if that is the case I am convinced He would provide us with the talent and resources for greatness… and that actually there is very little we can do on own to obtain it, besides giving a good effort and hoping it was indeed: good-enough.
Sure we can obsess and work hard and sacrifice time, food, sleep, and relationships chasing greatness just to find it wasn’t in the plan… His Plan, the whole time. Greatness is truly an earthy treasure, and holds little value in God’s heart.
Yes, I believe for some of us God may pave our way to greatness, if with our greatness we will touch the people God intends us to.
The accomplishment of greatness is nothing more that the affirmation from the world that we are valuable. With God we don’t need the world’s affirmation! With God we just need to be where He calls us to be… where we can share His message of Love to all who cross our path!
All God asks is that we try our personal best and that will be good-enough for Him:
Anything more is a waste of energy.
Anything less we are settling for less in life than God desires for us.
The satisfaction of knowing I am playing my part in this play of life is all I need. Being good-enough is indeed good-enough for me… as being good-enough is good-enough for God.
So for today I will not strive for greatness, I will rest in good-enough and enjoy the glory to God that being good-enough can bring!
Worrying doesn’t take away tomorrow’s troubles, it steals today’s peace! Worrying is just not a helpful thing to do! Worry keeps us stuck in our fears. It forces us to focus on the negative possibilities and blinds us. Worry keeps us fixated on our problems so much that we aren’t able to see what we CAN do. Worry blocks us from embracing the solutions that are often right in front of us!
Let’s say goodbye to worry and welcome in the Peace that God has promised would be ours if we accept it.
Philippians 4:6-7 (NIV)~ Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Matthew 6:25-27 (New International
“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?”
Psalm 55:22 NIV~”Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you;
he will never let the righteous fall.”
Matthew 6:34 New American Standard Bible~ “So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”
No matter how far you’ve gone down the wrong road, it’s never too late to turn around! Stop for a moment and look around… is this the place God desires for you to be? You will know in your heart if you have strayed off the path God has laid out for you!
Do not worry, do not fret if you have stumbled into darkness! God has sent you a Savior to Light your path! He sends you angels to reach out their hands to walk with you if you but choose to join them!
Our God does not force us to follow His path, yet is ALWAYS there to guide us if we are brave enough to turn around and look towards Him.
❤️Ann ‘Not Just A Blonde’
When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” Proverbs 3:5-6 (New Living Translation) “Trust in the Lord with all your heart;
do not depend on your own understanding.
Seek his will in all you do,
and he will show you which path to take.”
We need more compassion in our world and in our lives. When we hurt along with others who are hurting, we are connected to them through their suffering. This connection is a pathway for love.
We are able to grow more compassionate by getting outside of ourselves and suffering alongside those who suffer. It’s this ability to imagine what could comfort another that allows us to love our neighbor as we love ourselves.
Compassion is the catalyst for empathy. Empathy is the catalyst for knowing how to best love others as we ourselves would want to be loved. It is how we are able to imagine another’s needs and how to best give them love.
Compassion converts empathy into acts of love and kindness. Love in action heals broken hearts and broken people… and in time a broken World.
To bring more love into our world and into our lives we need to cultivate more compassion. Compassion is one of love’s most important ingredients!
❤️Ann 'Not Just A Blonde'
Mark 12:31 (New Living Translation)
“The second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ No other commandment is greater than these.”