Sex & Shame (Jesus was a Bastard)

26 Aug

I am going to talk about sex.  And adultery. And abortion.

(Just another fun Tuesday night.)

I don’t do stuff like that on my blog. I am not really a fan of controversy.

But I feel like I need to add my voice to the madness.

We’ve all read the headlines lately.

So many emotions. So many personal opinions. So many people angry and disgusted. Heart-broken.

So many people divided, further.

I don’t have a lot of answers, but I know a few things that are not answers.

I don’t think we (as followers of Jesus) need to preach sin-avoidance to people.

Quit having sex outside marriage.

Quit screwing up.

Quit being imperfect…being human.

I don’t think we do a very good job giving grace to people.

(That’s what Jesus does.)

People suck at it. But we try, bless our hearts.

With the help of a love that won us over, we can love the unlovable.

(Mainly, us.)

Honestly, I don’t think yelling and protesting and signing petitions and using hashtags is going to change much.

I definitely don’t think sheltering our kids, obsessing over “purity,” and making sure abstinence is the only option, works.

I don’t think putting “good, Christian” marriage on a pedestal really helps either.

Real change is harder. It takes a lot of inconvenience and sacrifice and passion.

It’s easy to get angry. It’s a little more difficult to step back and examine the meaning behind the action.

How did our society get here?

When did we stop taking responsibility for our actions?

When did it become ok to rip apart innocent children?

When did we grow so cynical and hard-hearted?

When did I?

I played the perfect Christian girl for a long time. I tried, and I really wanted to do the right thing. But I was sad and broken and feeling unloved, unworthy and guilty. I lost my virginity when I was 15. When I was 18,  I thought I was pregnant. I wasn’t, but it was a scare.

But I wonder how my life would have turned out if I had been.  If I had a child at 18 instead of 30. Outside of marriage instead of inside. With a dysfunctional boy who was even more broken than I was, instead of with my best friend who I trust more than anyone.

Would I have been rejected by my church community?

Would I have stopped loving Jesus because I thought he could never love me after what I did?

Would I ever have been able to forgive myself?

I think about the shroud of guilt and condemnation that the Christian church has historically covered over people who commit sexual sins.

(As if there is a moral hierarchy.)

The red letters placed on women’s chests throughout generations.

Evil.

Bad.

Dirty.

Whores.

I think of all those fatherless children who grow up with an unnecessary shadow of gloom over them.

I think of all the babies who never get to see the light of day because their mother’s couldn’t bear to bring them into the world.

Maybe these almost-mothers were just selfish and calloused, or maybe they carried that deep shame placed on them by some religious stone-throwers.

You know, to put it bluntly, Jesus was an illegitimate child… a bastard.

Imagine the scandal of an unmarried girl becoming pregnant.

It was God.

Right. Until he heard it straight from an angel, the only thing Joseph thought was that his fiance had slept with another man.

Imagine the pride and fear he had to swallow in order to stay with her.

This isn’t my baby.

The very act of God coming to earth was surrounded by so much scandal.

Then Jesus grew up and dared to look the prostitute in the eye and tell her she was worth something.

So why are those who claim to be followers of Him so obsessed with sexual sin?

I know the shame and the pain it can cause. But I also know the redemption available. The freedom and grace we all can walk in.

What if we created an environment where we stopped preaching everything that is wrong with the world and started focusing on what can be redeemed?

(Everything)

What if we taught our kids that instead of focusing on not having sex, just to focus on Jesus?

What if we stopped worshipping marriage and thinking our spouse is going to be our savior and just accept them for the human they are?

What if we celebrated the beauty of a new life, no matter how they were conceived?

What if we focused on grace and love and stopped arguing about what we think sin is and isn’t?

What if every pregnant, single girl was immediately swept up into a loving community, protected by a family dedicated to being by her side through every emotional and physical pain, a village committed to helping raise her precious child?

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Would destroying her baby even cross her mind?

What if we stopped obsessively pointing at what people do in their bedrooms and started obsessively pointing them to Christ?

What if we embraced the worst of the monsters and found that they are just as human as us?

I am not saying it’s easy. Completely the opposite. I don’t have some political plan to see this on a mass scale.

And I am not saying we shouldn’t be angry.

It’s good to feel righteous anger, even rage.

But don’t let it paralyze you. Don’t let it make you bitter and hopeless.

(Trust me, I am speaking to myself)

Turn your heartbreak into action.

Volunteer. Foster. Adopt. Love. Give. Write. Speak.

Do it from a place of humility, knowing:

There, but for the grace of God, go I.

And tomorrow will be better.

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3 Responses to “Sex & Shame (Jesus was a Bastard)”

  1. Aunt JoKay August 26, 2015 at 11:22 am #

    Wow – so much here to think about. I am readying your blog again and again……..and, while I consider myself loving and accepting and forgiving, I find myself challenged by your words.

  2. Teali August 26, 2015 at 2:22 pm #

    At first I felt a little perturbed, I think the modern church has focused so much on grace that we accept sin. Just continue to sin and praise the Lord on Sunday.

    As I read I almost jumped out of my seat, create a community that would support, a village. How do we do that?? How do create a village outside of just ourselves?

    Pointing to Jesus, relationship not religion. Though ‘religious’ acts can be used as discipline which we all need. Religion by itself won’t save you, but relationship with our Savior.

    Appreciate your writing 🙂

  3. Dan Williams November 30, 2015 at 4:37 pm #

    Incredible

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