Okay, so building on the last confession, here's another one: I think that we (America) should allow gay marriage, as long as churches are not forced by law (citing discrimination, etc.) to perform them.
*Again, a disclaimer: I MAY BE 100% WRONG on this. I'm positive I'm wrong on some level, as I don't think any of us ever totally have it right when it comes to God. I'm not trying to convince you or convert you, and my thoughts in this area are very much a work in progress. This is just where my head is at right now, today, and I may very well be in a different place a month from now. End of disclaimer.*
See, here's the thing: I think it is really strange that we are trying to legislate our beliefs upon the entire country simply on the basis that they are our beliefs. I have yet to hear or read any logical argument that makes me believe that gay marriage would somehow hurt all marriages, or negatively effect society in general. Every article I've ever read on this subject has been embarrassingly vague and nonsensical to me, honestly.
(Please know that I understand that we, as Christians, are supposed to be bound to a higher law than American law...however we are projecting that Biblical allegiance onto the entire population and that is where we lose all credibility. Our convictions are just that: OUR convictions. I don't want to be bound by an outsider's definition of right or wrong, so why should I assume that right over others?)
In my mind, if being a homosexual is a sin, and if marrying someone of the same gender is also a sin, isn't that ultimately between that person/couple and God? We all answer for our own sins, end of story. Quite honestly, I often wonder if we Christians aren't guilty of a bigger sin here, by showing such hate and disdain toward the homosexual population, and inadvertently projecting a portrait of God that is full of anger and contempt, a being who just wants to force you into submission at all costs.
Serious question: Isn't someone burning in hell because they reject the ugly version of God that we present to them a bigger tragedy than anything?
Unlike some Christians, I am FIRMLY against America becoming a theocracy of any kind, even a watered down version where evangelicals dictate what parts of the Bible should become part of American law. That reason? Whose version of Christianity/God do we choose? Which parts of the Bible are enforced and by whom? What's next...a tithe tax? Women being forced to wear long skirts and head coverings? Outlawing tattoos or remarrying after a divorce? And what happens when/if Christianity is no longer the religion of the majority and it is replaced by whatever religion follows it? Will we still be happy with said theocracy then?
Just for a second, envision
yourself living in an America bound by Sharia law. You aren't Muslim, you
don't believe in their teachings and you feel that they are forcing you
to directly oppose what you do believe. Do you honestly think that over time
you'd be converted to their religion and learn to love and serve their
version of god, or do you think that you'd become more resentful over
time and come to hate everything that they stand for? Now tell me why on
earth you think that non-Christians will be won over to Christ by
forcing them, through legislation, to follow your set of beliefs?
I can force my child to read her Bible for hours each day, and that won't necessarily make her a believer. In fact, it may sour her to Christianity altogether if, instead of letting her find her own path to God, I use a heavy hand to force her down my path. Given the authority, I could force my neighbors to go to church each Sunday, but that wouldn't automatically make them believers, it would most likely cause them to resent both me and God. If I had the power, I could make it illegal to curse or use the Lord's name in vain...but those laws would ultimately do nothing at all to change the actual hearts of men. And isn't that where we are called to focus...the hearts of humanity?
I'm becoming more and more convinced that the crusade of Christianity against gay marriage is only accomplishing one thing spiritually speaking: multitudes of people turning their backs on God even further. That is a heavy cost, and for what? If your problem is with homosexuality, this doesn't 'solve' that problem. Homosexuality has always existed and will always exist, whether they are allowed to marry or not. So all that is really being accomplished is a bigger gulf is being forged between 'them' and 'us' or by extension, between them and God.
Where is the love we are supposed to show our fellow sinners? Are we so afraid that loving them will somehow make us complicit in their sin, as if we aren't knee deep in our own? Have we become more about the letter of the law than the spirit of the law, and isn't this something Jesus warned us about? I mean, is anyone else feeling a bit like a Pharisee?
Also, let us not forget it hasn't been that long ago that some Christians used the Bible to fight against interracial marriages, as well. My own marriage would be against the law had that argument stood, and for what reason, I ask you? How would my marriage hurt anyone, offend God, or cause society to implode into chaos? At one time, many Christians believed firmly that God said it would do those things, just as they say gay marriage will do those things now.
One last thing to keep in mind: Marriage as we know it now (even amongst Christians, sadly) only has about a 50% success rate, so please don't come at me with the argument about the 'sanctity' of marriage between a man and a woman. We straight people have managed to make quite a mockery of marriage already, if you ask me.
EDITED TO ADD: I just found an article that says what I was trying to say, only much better than I said it! I can't vouch for the entire site, as I have never read there before, but the article is good.