Love First Excerpt

The following is a portion of text from the introduction to Love First- but don’t worry, I won’t post any more! I don’t want to spoil the surprise. What I do want to know is what kind of a feel people get off of the intro, if it’s appealing, fair, etc.

I’m just a girl.

I’m not a Biblical scholar.

I haven’t been to seminary.

While I have spent time as a youth pastor and have led or aided in leading numerous small groups and charitable efforts, I’m not a preacher.

As I write these words I’m just a twenty-five year old wife and mother. The most official work I do is running the toddler room at my home church. Most of my days are spent tending house and making cookies.

But don’t let me deceive you. I am also much more than a paltry list of credentials. I’ve been in the trenches when it comes to bringing God to people. I’ve spent time tending a coffee shop that was known as a safe haven for the ragamuffins and strays of the world. I’ve talked to people. More importantly, I’ve listened to them. I’ve heard their stories. I’ve heard their pain and confusion. I’ve seen the shock on a cross-dresser’s face when he realized that the odd little girl he was talking to was a Christian, and I’ve seen his relief when he realized that my religion didn’t bar me from showing him kindness and taking pleasure in his company. I saw the light come into his eyes when he realized I had no desire to tell him he was going to burn in hell.

I’ve seen the fear on a friend’s face when she thought that telling me she was with another woman might mean losing my friendship, and I heard her relief when she realized my friendship wasn’t conditional to her perceived purity.

I’ve been there when a young man was questioning his sexuality. I’ve heard his fury with God for not just making him straight. I’ve witnessed his tears as he begged and pleaded for his burden to be taken from him, and I’ve seen his spirit wither as days and months passed without hearing God’s reply. I’ve seen him become assured of his own condemnation and fall away.

Oh, the condemnation. All the condemnation. A myriad of bright souls so positively certain that God does not want them that they never even attempt to find His face at all. And why would they believe that God hates them? Because the Church has done almost nothing to disabuse them of that notion- and much to reinforce it. It is the Western Church’s greatest shame that we have convinced an entire subset of humanity that they are not desired by God because they are not desired by us.

Unless something changes, they will never be reached by us- Jesus’ modern day disciples.

And this is where I cease to be just some girl. I am the one who will no longer be silent as I watch Christ’s bride hinder his ministry. I am more than myself because I am called- called to reintroduce the concept of God’s love and mercy. Called to teach that holiness is more than a state of being, it is also the journey towards that state. Holiness is not a prerequisite to faith and acceptance but instead the product of it.

Do not mistake me. What I have to offer to you is not a hypocritical condemnation of the Church’s actions but instead words spoken in love. That love being both for my Mother, the Church, and my Father God.

My call to repentance for the Church is a mere fragment of this written work. The largest part of it is not about what has been done wrong, but how we can start doing it right.

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Story submissions for my book, please?

I’m looking for a few people to share stories to put in my book.  So if any of my blog readers would like to submit, please do so.  Otherwise, if you know someone who may be interested in contributing, please cut and paste the following and send it to them:

Let me introduce myself a little:  my name is Lindsey Kay and I’m a Christian.  But I’m not the holier-than-thou “I know the best for everyone”, “please sit still and let me tell you how to live your life” kind of Christian.  I’m the kind who thinks that God is Love, that hypocrisy is one of the worst possible sins, and that the attitude Christianity takes towards the world at large and gay people specifically is so un-Christ-like that’s it’s a real embarrassment.

I’m writing a book.

It won’t be a big book and I doubt it will ever be a popular book, but it will be a short and very heartfelt book begging Christians to change the way they treat gay people and to try to explain to them that the judgmental and stony-hearted attitude some Christians take just drives people away from God and leaves us all with blood on our hands.

And I would like to give you the opportunity to share your story.  Have you ever seen hypocrisy harden someone’s heart against God and other people?  Have you ever seen someone’s soul wounded by the church?  Please tell me about it, and help me to open the church’s eyes to the reality of it’s actions.

Thank you.  My email is shush.lindsey@gmail.com

(Please send all stories in before October 12th)

Coming Soon…

*!- THE BOOK!

Otherwise known as:

Love First, Ask Questions Later:

Seeing past our expectations to the Person God Loves

Just to keep you all in the loop, I will be setting up a personal website beyond this blog to handle ALL of my work as an author, which will also have a nifty CafePress store where you can buy shirts that say things like “He who says he loves God but hates his brother is a LIAR” and, of course, “love first, ask questions later.”

The Book will also be buyable there, or from me as an individual (for bulk orders where a discount is desired)

I’m shooting to have all of this completed by November 8th, which means I will definitely burn all of the keys off of my keyboard.  Holiday Giving is a major influence in this decision, as many people asked “will I be able to tuck this into all of my holiday baskets?”

The answer: YES!

The goal is to NOT suspend blogging in the interim, although the topics I blog on will likely be heavily colored by the material I’m researching.  So, probably not that different from normal.

Question-

Just testing the waters… A few people have emailed me suggesting a short book or pamphlet on Religious tolerance and fair treatment of homosexuals, based off of a few of my blog posts. It would be the kind of thing that churches could put in their libraries or that Christian gays could give to family members/church fellows to help foster understanding.

This would differ from other things available because the main thrust wouldn’t be disillusioning people of the idea that homosexual acts are inherently sinful, but rather looking PAST the question of sin and seeing homosexuals as people whom God loves and wants to keep, regardless of their sexuality.  I personally think that such a work could be helpful because it could transcend the doctrinal divide.

My (three part) question would be: Would you buy such a book, and do you honestly believe that churches or ministry teams would be interested in such a thing (particularly if it came with a reading/study guide that would make it suitable for small group teaching)?

Please answer this question fairly, as if I decide to go this route I will be depending on the generosity of strangers to recoup the personal costs involved.