by guest blogger, BroKen
There is a tidal wave coming. It has hit my house and I'm up to my neck! I'm writing to warn you and ask for your prayers. Pray that our attachment to the Foundation will hold. If it hasn't hit your house yet, it probably is headed that way. It certainly has hit your neighbor's house. Be ready. Pray. Fast. Pray.
What tidal wave am I talking about? Here is a clue. Gene Robinson was the first openly homosexual bishop in the Episcopal Church. In his book, God Believes in Love: Straight Talk about Gay Marriage, he describes how this tidal wave wiped out his family about 30 years ago. He didn't hold onto the Foundation and has learned to ride this wave. He is doing all right by earthly standards. Yet I tremble when I think where the wave is taking him and those he influences. I pray for him and I ask you to do the same. I read his book last week and responded with an e-mail. Here is what I sent:
Dear Bishop Robinson,
I just finished your book, God Believes in Love. Thank you for your honesty in sharing your experiences and thoughts surrounding the issue of gay marriage. A friend of mine gave me your book in hope that it would help me process the fact that a woman very dear to me is planning to marry another woman soon. Your book was a help, but that process is ongoing and I wonder if you could help me a bit more.
I have some serious questions. You describe meeting a “wonderful, young woman” after college, getting married, and having two daughters. You say, “the joyful celebratory times (of marriage) made me feel as if I were the luckiest man on earth.” You say your marriage was “intrinsic to who I was.” You say “we were a deliriously happy couple, and our marriage had been the source of deep joy and happiness.” When after 13 years of marriage you decide to divorce, you ask my question. “How could we sacrifice all that... over the issue of sexuality?” Exactly. How could you? You say, “It seemed like a reckless thing to do...” It still does seem so to me. Can you help me see how it wasn't?
OK, you say “there seemed to be no other way to live a life of integrity.” What is the lack of integrity in “being drawn to people of the same gender” (or any gender for that matter) while being married? Temptation is absolutely irrelevant to the marriage vows. No one promises not to be tempted. You could have said, “I am a homosexual man married to the woman I love.” Why would that have lacked integrity?
“Wasn't I crazy to be doing this?” You said it. “Why would we mess this up?!” Yeah. Why? You describe a “still, small voice of God?” (the question mark is yours) saying “be true to yourself.” That may be a spiritual message, but for the life of me, in all that you describe, I cannot recognize it coming from the Holy Spirit. It seems that, even now, you have doubts about its source.
You took a priest to the divorce court and then tried to solemnize the dissolution of your marriage. “There was no liturgy for the ending of a marriage...” You could have taken a clue from that. “So we made it up out of whole cloth...” Yeah. That's what you did.
As it now stands, your book solidifies my opposition to gay marriage. We all face various temptations and we often think that yielding is the only way to make temptations go away. Solemnizing sinful behavior might help to paper over our guilt and make us feel better for a while. But in the end there is only one solution for our guilt.
Thanks again for your honest sharing of your experience. I am still open to any answers or clarifications you might offer.
Sincerely in Christ,
Rev. Ken Berggren
Pastor, United Methodist Church
I haven't received an answer. If I do I'll pass it along. You see, the Bishop has somehow twisted the cross into a kind of surfboard to let him ride this wave. Personally, I think I'd rather drown.