I recently spoke at my church on the topic of homosexuality in relation to the Supreme Court in Connecticut deciding last Friday to lift the ban on same sex marriages. (Please note that I do not consider them to be marriages in any way though.) Afterwards, someone came up to me and asked me the question of how to handle dealing with a homosexual co-worker.
This is a difficult topic for we Christians. On the one hand, we want to paint the reality of sin as it really is. On the other hand, we don’t want to come out with all barrels blazing and drive the sinner away. How is it that one can come to the homosexual and call homosexuality sin but yet reveal to the homosexual that he is a creation in the image of God?
In fact, this is something that we could say we have to do with everyone. We all deal with people who are dealing with various sins. In fact, the one that we deal with the most is ourselves. I don’t know about you, but I could easily identify a number of sins in my life that I struggle with and yet, I still have to realize that I am loved in the eyes of God.
I think homosexuality is different though. We could talk about someone who wants to give up alcohol for instance and can’t seem to do it. Alcohol is something more external to you though, though I don’t deny the reality of addiction. Sexuality is who you are. It is your very nature. It is what you live with every day of your life. Sex is not a function. It is an aspect of your nature.
Something that should be kept in mind is that this is a real Christian struggle also. Christian men and women can struggle with this issue and we need to have love for those who do and recommend good Christian counseling. I say Christian because modern secular counseling will try to convince someone that such activity is not a sin.
I was first asked though what the causes of homosexuality were in my opinion. I pointed to an absent father, an overbearing mother, and personal insecurity. Ultimately, it’s a self-image concept. It is in realizing that that we can begin to see where the healing should take place. Keep in mind as I say this that I am not a trained psychologist in any way.
My first piece of advice to this guy was that in dealing with his friend, that he should not really talk about religious matters. The first thing needed is to be a friend. Let me be clear on this. I think men should minister to homosexual men and I think women should minister to homosexual women. Now that doesn’t mean a woman can’t share the gospel with a homosexual man, but if you have any control over the situation, let a man work with a man and a woman work with a woman.
I am going to be writing for men here, but I think the same could apply to women and they need to adjust accordingly. I once worked with a man who is a homosexual still as far as I know before I moved. I simply was a friend to him and let him borrow some of my video games for instance that he was interested in. We never talked about religion, but I do not doubt my religion was known. It was common knowledge around the workplace. He and I even went out to a local pizzeria once on our lunch break.
Did I think some people could make jokes behind my back? Sure. Let them though. I was being a friend and trying to make a point clear. You are accepted as a man. Not just as a person but as a man. This is one reason a good lady is so important to a man. When a man realizes that his lady sees him as a man, then stand back. This guy can do anything!
Then, I would say to let him bring it up. Let him ask what makes you so different from all the others, and especially hope he says “All the other Christians.” It’s at that point that you can go into communicative evangelism. I would begin first by talking about Christ. Talk about who he is and what he did. Eventually, you’re going to have to get into sin though.
This is also where we need to recognize the difference between the person and the actions they are committing. People are sinners, but it is not a necessary trait to being a human that one be a sinner also. There is the possibility of change not into something that is less than human but something fully human. God enables each person to become what they were meant to be. Soren Kierkegaard once prayed that with God’s help, he would become himself.
Of course, all of this should be done with prayer. The best thing still is to treat him as a man. Make sure that he is seen as one of the guys and before too long, he might begin to think that he is and one aspect of being one of the guys, is noticing all of those lovely women that we are blessed to live amongst on Earth.