Why I Keep Doing This

I just posted the interview on a conservative Christian radio program in which, let’s just say, they didn’t appreciate my approach.

Since that interview yesterday I’ve gotten quite a few emails/Facebooks/etc from people asking me why I would keep doing this work and continue to get pounded on by both communities? Here are two quick answers written to me yesterday after the interview that remind me why:

This one from a straight Christian:

I just listened to the interview and I was so impressed with the strength and resolve you showed, not allowing yourself to get drawn into a pharisaical debate. It seemed that for the host and the callers, homosexuality is an “issue” and that for you, homosexuality is about people. When the host divided Christians by “their callings” (essentially saying that you may be called to love the LGBT community, but he is not) he missed the very heart of the matter and didn’t even realize it. Followers of Jesus are given different gifts, for sure—but everyone who follows Christ is called to radical love. Thanks for your costly witness to the Love of Christ today.

This one from a gay man:

I’m gay and I was sent the podcast to your interview on Moody Radio today. You couldn’t pay me $100,000,000 to listen to that gay-hating station. When my friend sent it to me he said I “HAD TO LISTEN”. So I did. I thought he wanted me to listen to it because they were just ripping on us, and our “evil agenda” more. But I never expected you, or what I heard you say! I want to let you know that you have inspired me more than any other person I have ever heard. For you to go on there, take their sh!t and be as gracious as you were, still loving me and my community all the while, I can’t say thank you enough. It would be so much easier for you to just give in and be like them. This world would be totally different if there were even 1 more of you around. If the church was made up of people like you and your group, I would even think of going. I also then went online to check you guys out and I saw all the flack you’re getting from my people. Fu@k them. They’re missing the point. They care about politics and you care about love and God. Sure, I want gay marriage legalized as much as the next gay partnered couple (I’ve been with my partner for 14 years now), but I would much rather have someone like you trying to convince those mother f*^kers on that program you were on to learn what it means to love and engage – because God knows they would never listen to me or any other LGBT person. And I don’t know any person who would sit there and still love them too! God bless you.

That’s why.

Much love.

www.themarinfoundation.org

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About Andrew Marin

Andrew Marin is President and Founder of The Marin Foundation (www.themarinfoundation.org). He is author of the award winning book Love Is an Orientation (2009), its interactive DVD curriculum (2011), and recently an academic ebook titled Our Last Option: How a New Approach to Civility can Save the Public Square (2013). Andrew is a regular contributor to a variety of media outlets and frequently lectures at universities around the world. Since 2010 Andrew has been asked by the United Nations to advise their various agencies on issues of bridging opposing worldviews, civic engagement, and theological aspects of reconciliation. For twelve years he lived in the LGBT Boystown neighborhood of Chicago, and is currently based St. Andrews, Scotland, where he is teaching and researching at the University of St. Andrews earning his PhD in Constructive Theology with a focus on the Theology of Culture. Andrew's research centers on the cultural, political, and religious dynamics of reconciliation. Andrew is married to Brenda, and you can find him elsewhere on Twitter (@Andrew_Marin), Facebook (AndrewMarin01), and Instagram (@andrewmarin1).

  • http://gayhomophobe.wordpress.com Sans

    From this gay man, believer in Christ, son, brother, uncle and friend who struggles daily to be the best possible person I can be and stay true to my faith…thank you. Thank you for speaking out for those of us who live in the middle. Please keep on keepin’ on, Andrew. You are light in a dark place.

  • http://tetheredsoul.wordpress.com Andrew A

    I’m glad you’re doing what you’re doing, Andrew. And I’m glad that interviews like you had yesterday don’t discourage you to the point of giving up.

    Reading both of those responses made me proud to call you a friend and brother. I’ve seen some of the most hard-hearted Christians come around and realize that our calling is about love and people rather than issues and debates. Jesus’ power to redeem covers all people on all “sides”.

    Grace and Peace.

  • http://www.alifeinshadesofgrey.blogspot.com Joseph

    Andrew, keep up the great work. I’ve been writing a blog about my experiences as a gay evangelical Christian and have been getting the same types of both negative and then overwhelmingly positive feedback. It’s a bit of a rollercoaster, but you are doing the right thing. Thank you! Check out alifeinshadesofgrey.blogspot.com if you’re interested in a blog from the gay Christian perspective. I’ve been recommending your book widely.

  • http://apprising.org Ken Silva

    “a gay evangelical Christian ”

    To the point, the Bible most clearly calls the practice of same sex sexual relations, i.e. homosexuality, sin.

    While I’m also saddened that too many Christians do mistreat LGBT people, no amount of “dialogue” or twisting of Bible texts is going to change the fact that the practice of homosexuality is sinful conduct.

    And it’s not unloving to tell the truth.

    • Rocco

      Wow.

      Glad you cleared that up.

      Now.

      About the sin in your life.

      Let’s talk about that.

    • Mrs T

      How do you know if he is practicing? Many gay Chrisians choose to be celibate!

      • http://apprising.org Ken Silva

        “How do you know if he is practicing?”

        I didn’t say he was. I am speaking in principle.

    • http://jontrouten.blogspot.com/ Jon Trouten

      This reminds me of the ongoing accusations by those in the political right who not only refuse to believe that our president is a Christian, but turn around and assert that he worships Islam despite his ongoing denials.

      How dare people deny the Christ in their fellow Brethren???

      • http://apprising.org Ken Silva

        “This reminds me of the ongoing accusations…”

        Maybe because you want to see this; I didn’t accuse anyone of anything.

        Perhaps you need to heed your own words: How dare people deny the Christ in their fellow Brethren by ascribing to them things they didn’t say???

    • Bridge

      Ken, do you really think that homosexuals don’t already know that Christians think what they are doing is wrong???? That is the whole reason for this dialog and this website.
      The homosexual community does not need another Christian telling them that what they are doing is wrong. Ultimately ALL sin is sin and separates us from God. Jesus is very clear that we are not to worry about the speck in our brother’s eye, but the log in our own. It is not my job – or any other Christians – to tell someone else about their sin. The ONLY place that can happen is within a loving relationship where we have earned the right to speak such things into another’s life, and hopefully this would be couched in love after much prayer.
      As Christians, we have failed miserably in this arena. What I do know is that Jesus told us to love and that others would know us by our love for one another. Jesus loved the unlovable, the outcast, the sinners — and he never accused them. The only people he accused and held in contempt were the religious leaders who were judging others and holding themselves up as a standard.

  • http://trinityandthetriangle.blogspot.com TrinityandtheTriangle

    One, to Andrew, Your book, your blogs, etc. are such an inspiration to not just myself, but many friends of mine. I reccomend your book to my straigh, and non straight friends on a very regular basis. Please keep speaking out truth.
    to Ken Silva.
    I understand where you are coming from, but, please, oh please, oh please, stop pointing fingers, and labels.
    As a Christian, and a woman who likes woman, who considers it a sin, I understand what you mean, but, it still hurts. Because I know you don’t understand. No i don’t necessarily consider myself Gay, but, I don’t consider myself straight either.
    There are many beautiful and wonderful gay Christians, who are doing more for the kingdom of God, than many straight Christians I know. Yes, maybe their lifestyle may not be as God fully intended. But, then again, is ANYONE’S lifestyle fully as God intended?
    please, oh please, oh please, don’t hurt people.
    Thanks.
    Katie

    • http://www.loveisanorientation.com Andrew Marin

      Thanks for the encouragement Katie, it’s very humbling. You never know how people will take things – you just try to communicate what’s on your heart that you feel the Lord put there and let it be heard or not…. Much love!

  • http://carleton1958.xanga.com/ Jeff S.

    GO ANDREW! DON’T STOP! At least the host did end by saying “God’s using you in a wonderful way.” And he did say “you’ll be back.” Love ya, brother. You continue to impact me and many others.

    • http://www.loveisanorientation.com Andrew Marin

      Love you Jeff. Seriously. Thanks.

  • Bruce

    Andrew,
    I listened to the interview…. and I have a hard time seeing how you felt “bashed”? A couple of comments were very opinionated, but they weren’t “smashing” you….
    I’ve been following you for about 9 months or more, and I appreciate your heart in these matters, but don’t turn and make the Christian community your enemy…. they are your true and eternal family, like it or not, whilst unbelievers may become so, yet they are still not.

    One serious question from the interview….
    You say that it is the Holy Spirit’s job to convict and God’s to Judge. What means is it that they use to do their jobs? It is His Word….
    Remember this…. Jonah preached the word of God to repent, and a whole city was saved…. Lot tried to live amongst a people and be an example without preaching, and that city was destroyed.
    The Holy Spirit uses the Word to convict…. “how shall they believe unless someone preaches”…
    If homosexuality is a sin…. then it is the truth of God’s spoken word that will convict unto salvation.

    Nuff said….

  • Bruce

    In addition to my last statement…. Paul was clear, that unless the law had said, “You shall not covet”… I would have never know not to covet. It is the law, (God’s truth, either spoken or written down) that is a tutor to lead us to Christ (not to bring us righteousness). Without it, and a true conviction of our need to be saved from our sins… we cannot come to Him.

    The vagueness that people spoke of you having is possibly just a missing link in your presentation of the gospel. They are concerned that it is not complete enough to effect true and lasting conversion.

    No animosity here…. but this is important stuff…

  • http://www.loveisanorientation.com Andrew Marin

    Bruce – When I critique (of feel taken back by) the LGBT community someone always says I’m turing them into the enemy. When I critique (of feel taken back by) the Christian world someone always says I’m turing them into the enemy. I’m doing neither, to either.

    In response to your question:

    I believe God’s word is only part of the wholistic way the Holy Spirit and God do the convicting and judging – you’re missing divine relvelation and the example of other’s lives as well.

    Therefore if I believe what the Bible says, which I do, then I also believe the Trinity is big enough, reliable enough and truthful enough to do what they said they would; all the while I fulfull my end of the Kingdom Job Description in doing what has been asked of me. I can’t control any amount of convicting in other’s hearts (even though many like to think they can) or any amount of eternal judging either (thank God I don’t have to do that!); all I can control is how I love and continue representing, and pointing people to Jesus.

    And I don’t feel any amount of animosity from you.

  • Angela Tynes

    Wow, Ken Silva commented against you. That means you are doing excellent work! ;)

  • Debbie Thurman

    “all I can control is how I love and continue representing, and pointing people to Jesus.”

    Please keep doing that, Andrew, with Christ as your strength. I am willing to let God be God. I want to reiterate here that I believe you have a genuine divine call to do the ministry of reconciliation. I may be your elder (we’ll say a spiritual mother of sorts), but I am still a woman. God has given you authority He has not given me. I pray I have not brought offense to the ministry of the Gospel by asking you to clarify some things.

    God asks us all to examine ourselves, to make sure our hearts and motives are in line with His. I frequently pray the end of Psalm 139 for myself: “Search me, O God, and know my heart. Try me and know my anxious thoughts. And see if there be any hurtful way in me and lead me in the everlasting way.” I find I need that.

    I just want us to understand that Christ means for us to love people where we find them, but not to leave them there. We may not be quibbling over as much as we think we are. I think it hinges on how we present to Gospel to them. Christ will give you all the authenticity you need.

    Go in peace. God be with you.

  • http://www.ccgf.org Susan LeCornu

    Andrew,
    All any one of those listeners or even the interviewer himself needs is a son or daugher who struggles and their hearts would be tenderized and their words would instead have been appreciative of what you and the other “tee-shirts” did that day to winsomely reach out to the disenfranchised…..
    God Bless You


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