Sometimes I think the best thing that could happen to someone who struggles with loving homosexuals is for their best friend to come out of the closet, for their best friend to turn to this person they know and love and say, “You know what, I’m gay.” That’s what happened to me, and it changed my perspective forever.
Let me stop right here and say up front that this post has nothing to do with politics. I know homosexuality is a hot button issue, but I’m not addressing the political side of this. I’m addressing the human side that we often seem to miss. Our political views mean nothing if we don’t realize that homosexuals are just as human as you or I, and just as in need of love.
Five years ago, I met a boy in jazz band. For a whole year we were really great friends, and then, one day I thought, “I don’t know where these feelings came from, but I like this kid.” The next two and a half years were a roller coaster ride with many twists, and turns, and strong emotions. At the end of those two and a half years God told me, “Kelly, let go, it’s time to move on.” So I did, although not without a fight. At that point our friendship was very tense and awkward. Senior year, however, God worked a miracle and redeemed our friendship! We graduated together as very good friends… and then the shoe dropped. The summer after our senior year, my friend told me he was gay.
My initial response was confusion. This guy I had known and loved for five years had a whole dimension to him that I knew nothing about? I wrestled hard. I prayed, and read articles, and talked to person after person about their views on homosexuality. While I did come to some conclusions, I am still not firm on what I believe, and that is ok because no matter how confused I feel, I have discovered a very important truth. At the end of the day, my friend is still the man I know and love. His sexual orientation is simply one part of him, and nothing more.
So often, we as humans are tempted to judge people by the first thing we notice about them. Unfortunately for homosexuals, the first thing noticed is often their sexual orientation. Unfortunately for us, we struggle to look beyond their sexual orientation, and miss out on valuable friendships. I was so blessed to be able to get to know my friend for the amazing person he is before I knew about the thing that someone new would notice immediately. My love for my friend has helped me realize that I am far too quick to judge. How many incredible people are hidden behind a controversial part of who they are?
More than political reform or political restrictions, strong arguments for or against the issue, or anything related to politics or theology, homosexuals need to be loved just as much as orphans, and lawyers, and Guatemalans, and 4th graders, and every single person who walks this earth. So that’s exactly what I’m going to do!