#511 - My Friend is Gay
Volume 2 - Prayers to Love Our Neighbor
Dear Father, I have known throughout my lifetime that millions of men and women long for same-sex relationships. Not knowing anyone who was gay, it was easy for me to judge. I believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God and it speaks about homosexuality. I didn't expect my friend to come out gay. How do I defend Biblical absolutes when my heart longs to show love to this person? Am I to condemn their lifestyle or tolerate it? Father, if I condemn them, I will alienate them. The relationship will become estranged. I will not have the opportunity to show the love of God to them. If I tolerate their lifestyle, I will be accepting what the Word tells me is not good for their relationship with You. That doesn't seem loving either. I am in turmoil. I am in conflict. Help me. What do I do? Father, I must understand that we are all guilty of rebellion from God. I am a rebel. I have lived my life as though I am my own god. I have doubted Your character. I have worshipped other things. I still struggle with rebellion every day of my life. Gay or straight, everyone rebels from You. Gay or straight, we all need forgiveness for our rebellion. Gay or straight, we all need Jesus Christ. Father, I am no different from my friend - I need forgiveness for my rebellion from You just like they do. I must understand that my heart is deep waters. I do not understand why I do what I do. I do not understand the powerful forces that shape my thoughts and emotions. I have scars I am not aware of. How can I judge my friend? They too have been shaped by life experiences. They too have deep scars in their hearts. With Romans 7 in mind, I can find common ground with my friend by understanding it can be incredibly difficult to change our desires and behavior by will power alone. Father, You have made it clear - Christ-like love is the most powerful force in this world. I'm not talking about romantic love, sexual intimacy, or companionship. I'm talking about unconditional love. Love that's willing to die for someone else. Sacrificial love. Love that is compassionate, merciful, gracious, kind, patient, and generous. Love that always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres. Father, this kind of love can change the world. It can also change lives. My friend is going to need love. They are going to have problems in their life just like I have. Father, help me to show genuine Christ-like love to my friend. No judging. No condemnation. Compassion. May they ask me why I am so kind and may it create a spark in their heart for You. May the Holy Spirit enter their hearts and manage whatever change He believes needs to be made in their thoughts and desires. It's not my job to change how they think and desire. It is my job to continuously demonstrate the love of Jesus Christ. I want to thank You for my friend. They were created by You. They are unique and they are made in God's image. They have hopes and dreams as well as hurts and pains. They have God-given gifts. You watch them laugh and You watch them cry. You know their desires and You know their scars. They are loved by You. They deserve my love too. Father, I will give my friend respect because they were created in Your image. I ask that he or she shows me respect in return. May they respect my beliefs as they ask me to respect theirs. May they take their business elsewhere if they don't agree with my beliefs. I'll be their friend and care for them when they ask for help. Father, my friend and I can find common ground. We can work side-by-side helping people in need. If my gay friend leads a cause to encourage people to stand for righteousness and obedience to the true living God, I will join them. Father, help me love my gay friend with an incredible Christ-like love. Amen.
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