When I was a young girl, my grandfather taught me how to fish. It was an activity that he really enjoyed and he looked forward to the day that he could share his love of fishing with me and his other grandchildren. My grandmother would pack up some sandwiches and snacks and off we would go. She would come along with us…I think in her mind she went to keep my grandfather out of trouble (smile). They would bicker a bit on the way mostly because my grandmother was a back seat driver. “You’re going to fast…slow down. You missed the turn…you should’ve gone that way.” But that was part of the adventure.
There is one particular outing that stands out in my mind. We got to one of our favorite fishing holes and got ourselves set up. It was a beautiful day. Perfect weather…nice and quite. We had the spot all to ourselves. We fished along the shore because we didn’t have a boat. I had a good cast and sat on the shoreline waiting for a nibble. I gave my pole a tug and felt like I had something. I reeled it in a little and I felt some resistance. I thought, “this is it…I’m finally going to catch a big one!” I fought with it a bit, but continued reeling in my line. Boy was I disappointed when I pulled in a BOOT. Of all things. Really? A boot? Who puts their boot out in the middle of a reservoir? I wasn’t going to let it get me down. I stooped down by the cup of bait and got myself another worm. I took the worm and eased it onto the hook being careful not to prick my finger. I wrapped the worm around the hook weaving it on to disguise it from the fish…also making it harder for the fish to steal it. I admired my handy work and looked up just in time to see…BAM! I was a little too close to my grandfather who liked to kick his foot out when he cast. His foot came right in contact with my face and I went flying backwards into the sand. Luckily he didn’t hit me hard so I wasn’t hurt, but I will never forget the image of his shoe heading straight for my face (smile).
I liked spending time with my grandfather. He had some of the greatest stories, and was a good teacher. He went home to be with God when I was 16 years old. My time with him was definitely too short. Although I loved learning from my grandfather, when I became a Christ follower I received an even greater teacher. The Holy Spirit.
But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.
When He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come”
The Holy Spirit is a trustworthy guide. He helps believers discern between what is true and what is not. The Holy Spirit is God’s way of communicating with us. Everything he communicates to us is from the Father. 1 Corinthians 6:19 says that our bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit. It’s pretty amazing that God sent us such a precious gift that actually dwells inside of us.
Here’s what I find interesting. Some fellow believers are very quick to point out what they perceive as weaknesses in other believer’s faith. They may not mean to, but they come across as haughty. It is very off-putting to be told that your faith just isn’t as strong as the person that is speaking to you. When they have not experienced what you have, but they insist that your faith just isn’t strong enough, it is very insulting. So many times LGBTQ people are told that once they really come to know Jesus and become a faithful follower then they will be healed from their sexual desires. They will be the first to tell you that they don’t need to be healed because they aren’t sick. They don’t need to be fixed because they aren’t broken.
Have you spent countless hours, years even, pouring over the scriptures that speak about homosexuality? Have you questioned and cried out to God about it? Have you put every once of energy into making sure you were hearing God correctly about those verses in the Bible? Praying desperately for the Holy Spirit to guide you. I can assure you that most LGBTQ Christians have done all of these things. And I believe that the Holy Spirit has led them through the process. I know He has led me.
But aren’t we supposed to hold people accountable? Aren’t we supposed to show them the truth? Well, I trust the Holy Spirit more than I trust my own understanding. I’ve seen first hand the struggle, the questioning, the agonizing hurt that some of my LGBTQ friends and their families have gone through. I trust the Holy Spirit in them. Our God is big and full of mystery. I will never have all of the answers, and I don’t want them because that would make Him small. My hope in all of this is that when I get to heaven God tells me that I loved well. Period.
Here is a picture of my grandparents. I think they are just adorable. I miss them both very much.
I leave you with this:
And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.
Love has been poured into your heart…don’t let it go to waste…because love matters.