Just watched a moving video of a young man who seeks what all people seek—love and acceptance. Unfortunately, his goal is unreachable because he wants his faith community to accept him as he is with his lifestyle orientation.
I am familiar with the faith community this young man grew up in. It is conservative, very conservative. It has a rich history, but it does not tolerate practices outside of its fundamental values.
My observations over the years of other young people from this faith community and others who were seeking this type of acceptance from their faith community were ones of bitter disappointment. Many of them died being outcasts from their heritage, friends and families. Many died alone.
They clung to the unrealistic hope that their deviation from their faith community’s strict doctrines, especially the ones on sexual mores, would be accepted or overlooked. They reasoned—why should love and acceptance take second place to doctrines and literal interpretations of the sacred texts of centuries ago?
The more doctrines a faith community embrace, the less that faith community can embrace diversity of its members. The evolution from doctrines focused to love and acceptance is a slow process.
Perhaps being outcasts on the spiritual road of faith is their fate if they cling to the hope that they will be accepted. There are many faith communities where love and acceptance are freely given without judgment.
However it seems that these suffering individuals must find fulfillment in their heritage. However, it is that heritage and belief system which casts them out from their communal fellowship and participation—their place at the spiritual communion table and full acceptance.
Best advice to them: because your faith community will never accept you or your behavior find one who will accept who you are. That’s reality—pure and simple.
Dealing with the daily pain of rejection only adds misery to misery. Move on because you will never be embraced by your faith community for who you are as a human being. Why would you want to suffer continual rejection and anguish?
These conservative faith communities, and there are many of these on this planet traversing the cosmos, are not going to change their doctrinal “purity” to accept those who are out of harmony with their basic tenets, especially on sexuality. This is just the way it is.
It seems that sexuality is a major mountain on the road of life. The concepts of original sin and assorted idioms of sex are like a crop duster. They permeate the whole community.
One can sympathize with these individuals. Growing up in these faith communities, this is all they know. Associating with members outside of the group is highly irregular and in many cases discouraged. Therefore, the wonders of faith communities based on love and acceptance are as alien to them as the Martian surface.
They are alien in another sense as well. These conservative faith communities have their own argot and milieu. When these are ingrained in an individual from cradle to adolescence, it is part of who they have become.
Going back to the video, the young man sits in a beautiful place of worship alone as he talks from his hurting heart. For many people, even those who are viewed as faithful and true, loneliness in a place of worship is real.
Many silent tears are shed. Many hearts ache for that special fellowship of belonging.
Unfortunately, many never find it. What is sad is that they never look beyond their faith fence to greener pastures where the grass is verdant, the flowers are fragrant, and joy abounds in rich fellowship
If you are an outcast in your faith community find a place where you can thrive. If you remain where you are, you will wither into a dry stalk roughly tossed by the winds of non-acceptance and whispers, and in many cases the hostile darts of “believers” will destroy your spirit.
Life is too transient on this orb hanging in the majesty of the cosmos. Your life is too precious to suffer continual rejection by those who will never accept you for who you are.
G. D. Williams ©2014