Summary: The issue of homosexuality has brought so much pain to so many people. It's time for believers neither to excuse it nor to ignore it but to take a stand and be a part of the healing process.

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Almost every day for the past month our local newspaper has been filled with editorials about the issue we face as a state concerning marriage. Just over a week ago I came across one which I’d like to read for you…

“I am a father, uncle, brother, son, grandson, godfather, small business owner, taxpayer, Christian and partner – and I am also gay. It took me 24 years to finally be able to admit that to myself. Why? Because my Catholic church and society told me it was wrong. I grew up on a hobby farm, attended a small school and lived most of my life hearing negative things about gay people. I struggled daily with why I was ‘that way.’ How could I change? I thought numerous times about suicide and came close to attempting it once. Guess what? Nothing is wrong with me. God made me this way. I did not choose to be this way and anyone who thinks it’s a choice is simply wrong. Why would anyone choose to be discriminated against and feel like we have to live in fear, or as second class citizens? You can’t pray the gay away. I’ve tried. At what point did you choose to be straight? I’m guessing you didn’t, it’s just the way you are. Same applies to gay people…” [Mankato Free Press, 10/27/2012 Opinion]

What do you hear in this letter? Maybe it’s your angry heart saying “He’s wrong! How dare he say that!” Put aside your political and religious views about this issue and listen to what this man is expressing: pain, rejection, frustration, discouragement. This is a hurting person. This man hits the nail on the head because he expresses what many homosexuals ask – “Why do I feel this way? I didn’t choose to be this way.” And this is something that the church must grapple with today because homosexuals are condemned and judged as choosing a certain orientation and living in rebellion against God. There is so much pain in this issue no matter what side you’re on, that we need the Lord’s love and mercy and truth to know how to bring healing.

Let’s read Galatians 6:1-3 “Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted. Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. For if anyone thinks he is something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself.” Friends, during these last days, we need to be concerned about sin, deceit, immorality that surrounds us. Yes we need to take a stand. But What is the main emphasis of the Lord here? Watch for yourself! Restore those who fail in a spirit of gentleness. Bear one another’s burdens. Do you see the love and mercy that is to pour out of us? People need to find the truth but they also need to find love and mercy from us more than anything else.

Having said that, let’s look at three important facts the Scripture points out concerning this issue…

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