Why Should A Straight Person Care About Spiritual Friendship?

Editor’s Note: Matthew Loftus, a family physician, will soon leave his current life in Sandtown, Baltimore to move with his wife and children to South Sudan, where he will serve at His House of Hope Hospital. A writer for multiple publications such as MereOrthodoxy.com, ChristandPopCulture.com, First Things, and The American Conservative, he is also a regular columnist for Christianity Today. Matthew is a personal friend to some of us who write here at SF, and it’s an honor to have his first “guest post” with us today. — Wesley Hill

The author with his family, some of whom have disordered inclinations towards the natural use of their tongues.

The author with his family, some of whom have disordered inclinations towards the unnatural use of their tongues.

Unlike many other people who write or post on social media about the Church and LGBT relations, I don’t have a lot of gay friends. I have a handful of close friends who are either out publicly or who have confided about their sexuality to me, but I haven’t had to walk through the same difficult journeys that many others have experienced as they tried to support and care for loved ones who wrestled with their faith and sexuality. Even the intense conversations I’ve had with my gay and lesbian friends who introduced me to Wesley Hill’s Washed & Waiting and the rest of the Spiritual Friendship crew have not exactly been epochal for any of us involved.

When Wesley found out about this, he asked me to write about why I was still so interested in Spiritual Friendship. It had never struck me that a big emotional investment was necessary to be sharing and commenting on SF posts, but the question was a great opportunity for me to reflect: why should straight people care about Spiritual Friendship and the questions taken up here?

The most obvious initial draw for me was the role that sexuality has played in broader cultural discourse. Growing up in an era of “worldview training,” I heard over and over again that the battle for a traditional understanding of marriage was crucial and that reckoning with the issues of sexual orientation was necessary if there was any hope of advancing the Christian cultural witness. Few other things fascinated me as a teenager the way that sex, theology, and politics did, naturally inclining me to read everything I could in books like How Should We Then Live? or online sources like various Focus on the Family websites.

As I was coming of age, though, the narrative held by conservative Christian subculture that emphasized half-baked theories about why people choose a certain sexual orientation and the power of “orientation change” was beginning to unravel. The answers that I had used to justify the natural discontent between a traditional view of sexuality and the contemporary notions of love and gender were being exposed as brittle and unsatisfactory, just as I was starting to meet people who were gay and lesbian at college for the first time.

Spiritual Friendship filled the gap and helped me see that faithfulness to Scripture didn’t have to necessarily be shoehorned into a political fight. The instinct for any culture warrior, of course, is to use the emerging narrative of vocational celibacy among gay Christians as another weapon against the social forces we don’t like. While the writing of Spiritual Friendship is more resistant to this sort of weaponization than any “ex-gay” testimonies were, it is a real temptation to treat LGBT people as puppets to be directed. Still, there is a real public struggle to discern the meaning of marriage and its role, and the voices of Spiritual Friendship deserve an even greater place.

Conservative Christians who believe in a traditional sexual ethics should flip the script and let gay Christians do the directing for a while. Most have endured enough unjustified external ostracism and internal spiritual struggle to be worth listening to. If we are going to keep fighting for the values of marriage and family in our culture (and we should!), we should take our cues from the people who have defended these values at great personal loss and even mudslinging from their own Christian allies.

The cultural conversation about guarding and transmitting traditional values goes beyond gay marriage, though, which is the next reason why I find Spiritual Friendship so worthwhile. As the eponymous book on Spiritual Friendship rightly observes, the hollowing out of friendship and the idolatry of marriage has profound consequences for the straight and married just as it does for the gay and single. A variety of cultural and technological factors are pushing all of us toward atomization and disconnectedness and an atomized nuclear family will fall to Satan one way or the other almost as quickly as an atomized individual person will.

To this end, the conversations at Spiritual Friendship are engaging how and why we should build up lasting, meaningful friendships. Physical distance, cultural norms, and the natural rhythms of life (e.g. childbirth) shape our relationships with other believers and our neighbors in ways that we don’t always recognize, therefore, we always need to be identifying the forces that hold back or erode our love for one another and then push back with creativity and vigor.

Lastly, I keep reading because we all share the same struggles. Neither marriage nor friendship will fully salve our loneliness, quiet our lusts, or give us all of the intimacy we long for. The burdens that my sexual minority brothers and sisters face are qualitatively and quantitatively more difficult than mine, for sure, but their faith and hope are still instructive to me. Reading Washed and Waiting was undoubtedly a catalyst in my own sanctification and thinking through the public value of sexual sacrifice in marriage has helped me strengthen my convictions for the fight.

Just as most Christians who draw inspiration and hope from reading great missionary biographies and blogs (the sort that don’t skimp on the tribulations) don’t have the unique call to go overseas, so we can learn from the vocation and challenge of celibate gay and lesbian Christians. I believe that their trials are a gift to the body of Christ, so we should receive their words (and their personal friendship!) with gratitude. Pornography, fornication, adultery, and sexual abuse destroy many traditional Christian marriages– perhaps we would see more fruit if we paid closer attention to how people with much harder battles put sin to death.

The work of Spiritual Friendship is relevant to the personal, communal, and public concerns of Christians, regardless of sexual orientation. Even non-Christians curious about the value of friendships in our increasingly transient and disconnected society or the meaning of marriage and sexuality in our increasingly jaded and commercialized erotic milieu would probably find the writing here more engaging than a meme with an out-of-context Bible verse slapped over a picture of a smiling white family. Those of us who are in traditional marriages ignore those supporting us from outside at our own peril.

Matthew Loftus is a family physician who lives in the Sandtown-Winchester neighborhood of Baltimore and is preparing to teach and practice Family Medicine in South Sudan. Follow him @matthew_loftus or read more about his family and work at MatthewAndMaggie.org

61 thoughts on “Why Should A Straight Person Care About Spiritual Friendship?

    • No one on SF is arguing that anyone should accept contemporary notions of love and gender. If we did, SF wouldn’t exist. On other other hand, if you ask why we must engage with contemporary notions of love and gender, then the answer should be obvious.

    • I have read some of your posts. Not sure if you are a troll or legit, but I am with you that same-sex unions are not part of God’s plans. However, have you considered how you would help a gay brother out or a brother dealing with same-sex attraction other than saying being gay is wrong? Orientation shift does not seem to happen.

      • I would first make sure, like any human being, they have food, clothing, shelter, and legitimate work. Adequate medical care.

        IF they have these material needs- of any human being- then I’d work on their delusion that they are gay. Because that is what homosexuality is- a delusion. It doesn’t exist in reality, it’s a mental illness that is harmful first of all to the person who has it.

  1. I resonate so much with everything Matthew is saying here. I am also a straight, married man, and yet I have been reading everything I can for ml onths now here at SF and also from the contributors on other platforms. I have been fascinated by the conversation started here ever since I picked up “Washed and Waiting” from my church’s resource shelf. I have been encouraged and challenged, and freed to love my LGBT friends more fully, knowing that loving them and believing the Bible were not contrary positions, despite what the culture said. Thank you to everyone here for such a gift, and thanks to Matthew for expressing my own thoughts so fully.

  2. My question is, why does valuing and supporting straight marriages and families have to come at the expense of the legal and social non-existence of GLBT type relationships and families? Why can’t traditional families be strong and healthy alongside loving, healthy same sex families?

      • I’m not rejecting the person, I’m rejecting the construct that one can be loving while sinning against somebody else.

        Reject the sin, not the sinner. Reject the lie of homosexuality, reject that lie that the only thing a person is, is sin.

      • I have followed your comments on Crisis, Mr Seeber, and now here. May I suggest that you and the Crisis folks have an apologetics problem. You’al keep repeating that there are “no loving, healthy same sex families” when many Americans, particularly young ones, know gay couples. Some have classmates who are children in such families. Many more have relatives, friends, coworkers, and neighbors who are in same sex marriages. (I am a straight 64 year old woman physician and I know 5 such couples: in 2 cases through work and 3 via friends.)

        Most see these couples behaving about as lovingly and healthily as their straight married peers. So when you’al say that that is not the case you are saying, “Who do you believe: me, or your lying eyes?”

        According to polls 57% of those who identify as Catholic are in favor of gay marriage; of those Catholics who attend Mass weekly it is 42% in favor. These numbers are higher for the younger groups again. As our older cohort passes on, this will become the sensus fidelium.

        You might be more persuasive if you acknowledge that there can be good things about gay relationships–just as there can be good things about second marriages after divorce– but that these two states fall short of the ideal. (I don’t necessarily subscribe to that myself in the case of ssm, though I do in the case of remarriage after divorce. I am myself divorced–and not remarried partly for that reason. I still feel married–in a way–to my ex.)

        But though I don’t agree, I’m suggesting that more people will listen to your point of view if you don’t contradict what they actually see and experience.

      • hypatia1951: They’re using a definition of love that is foreign to 2 million years of human evolution. There is NOTHING HEALTHY about homosexuality, nothing loving about homosexuality, because homosexuality is a form of hatred.

        I have no need to be persuasive. I have only the duty to preach truth. There is nothing good about divorce, and nothing good about homosexuality at all. Both situations do not just fall short of the ideal- both are *actively destructive to everybody involved* in a way that is simply evil.

        There is a reason the Church calls for celibacy in these situations- to minimize the damage. Because it is damaging, to all concerned. Divorce is a form of abuse. Homosexuality is a form of abuse. Quite often both are forms of mutual abuse.

  3. Yes, if you are rejecting my ability to love and be loved by the woman I have twice exchanged vows with then you are rejecting me. I respect what SF is doing for GLB people who are committed to this community and its standards, but I am also greatful there are other options.

    • I am rejecting your vows as being invalid and false. If you truly loved her, you would want her to be heterosexual. Your “other options” are directly harmful to the very people you claim to love- your very best friend in the whole world and whatever children you have taken away from their fathers.

      I cannot ever condone that, because it is so incredibly harmful to the formation of the individual souls involved- but it is NOT the unforgivable sin, and thus, I accept it as no more sinful behavior than my own suicide attempts.

      • I’ve read enough of your words around Patheos to know that we are unreconcilable in our understanding of the world. I think we would better understand each other if one person spoke Swahili and the other Sanskrit. I’m just greatful that you can live your life with the spouse of your choice and I can live my life with whom I choose, and both of our relationships are equal by civil law. You are welcome to your religious Catholic sacrament of Marriage; since your religion has nothing to offer me and no place for me at a price I am willing to pay, I will happily stay out of it and leave you and your church in peace to bless your marriage as you choose.

      • Unfortunately, thanks to Obergefell, and the stupid no-fault divorce laws before that, and abortion and contraception before that, we are NOT welcome to a sacramental marriage anymore. We are not welcome in America anymore. America has abandoned anything resembling love and humanity.

  4. Hypatia

    Well, that just about sums it up: “Homosexuality is hate and abuse” “Who are you going to believe, me or your lying eyes?”

    Because I know full well that if I described my relationship with the names Hilary and Patrick, people like Ted would approve of it. But the moment ‘Patrick’ turns to Penny (her online name) it’s suddenly evil and hateful. Nothing else has changed, but apparently having the same genitals is enough to turn white to black and good to evil, even if everything else is the same. Thus making it crystal clear that the only thing that matters is our genitals. Not our actions, not our commitment, not our support for each other, or love, or joy, or dreams, or even the basic mundane things of dishes, bills and laundry: just the fact that we both have a clitoris instead of one of us having a penis magically wipes out every other moral value to our relationship. *Shrug* Any wonder that I find Ted’s message to have absolutely no connection or relevance to my life?

    Neither Penny or I would make a functional wife to a heterosexual man. As a lesbian I would never marry a man that I love. It would not be fair to him to be bound to a wife that loved him, cared about him as a person, but could never respond to him as a woman. He would deserve better then a partner could never find any interest, let alone joy or desire, in his male sexuality. And I do like men’s company and friendship, and I love my father and brother. However I am not going to respond to a male friend with the desire a straight woman would feel for her boyfriend, lover, or husband.

    I do think that SF is doing a lot of good for people who already agree with them. I think they have a lot of good things to say about the value of friendship and creating communities that welcome and support people without a specific life partner for whatever reason. But I also know that for both Penny and I, we are so much more together than we ever would be single, and that benefit ripples out into the lives of everybody we come in contact with. And I know as a same sex couple we are hardly unique in that. So when confronted with a community that demands as a price of admission that I leave her, I will decline and go where I can be welcomed with the woman I love at my side.

    To say that SSM isn’t ideal but can still be good, like the way a loving second marriage after a divorce can be good even though divorce is not ideal, that at least I can work with. We may not agree about what is ideal, but at least there is some recognition of goodness in the life we have now. But to call what I have in my life hate and abuse . . . eyeroll, snort, facepalm. It doesn’t even register as connected to reality and pretty much shuts down any chance of taking anything else seriously.

    • To Hilary922: I AGREE with you that ssm is ideal for gay people and that it is almost always risky for a gay person to marry someone of the opposite sex. I have happily attended the weddings of three same sex couples and felt as happy for them as I did for those straights whose opposite sex weddings I attended.

      I also believe that divorce is a bad thing, but I can acknowledge that a loving second marriage CAN be a very good thing–both for the spouses and for the children involved, even if that is not true for me.

      I was merely suggesting talking points for those who are, unlike me, opposed to same sex marriage. I don’t know why I do this. Maybe it is the high school debater in me who likes to try on all sides. Maybe it bothers me to see the other side–to whom I have ties of blood, upbringing, and friendship–make fools of themselves.

      It is moot anyway, since Seeber and the rest of the Crisis crowd dismiss what I suggest. Frankly, when someone brings up suicide, like Mr. Seeber did, I tend to back off. I don’t want to destabilize what might be keeping someone alive, even if what keeps him alive are unempirical diatribes.

      On the other hand such fulminations have contributed to suicidal ideation, and sometimes acts, by others –often young people who think their way of connecting to/loving someone of the same sex will send them to hell. That is part of the reason I argue with what the The Crisis crowd says. I agree with you that SF offers a much kinder take on ssa and an alternative for those who wish it. Like you I am glad celibacy-in-community is one, but not the only, choice for religious gay people.

      • Thank you for that reply and clarifying where you stand. I think we are in agreement that SF is a good option for religious GLB people, but it’s good that’s not the only option.

    • I do not care the name of your spouse. What I care is does the marriage fulfill the two reasons for marriage:
      1, Being a conduit to raise your spouse to a higher spiritual plane, more in keeping with the plan of God.
      2. Fulfilling the command to be fruitful and multiply.

      SSM fails on #2 outright, because it is a delusion in denial of basic biology. SSM fails on #1, because it makes it harder, not easier, to achieve salvation.

      Divorce is never good. Divorce is abuse. Always.

      SSM isn’t good. SSM is abuse, and shows hatred for humanity in general and the spouse in particular-.

      Your reality is built on delusion. Nothing more.

      • Dear Troll,

        If you can’t engage in a discussion without being intentionally demeaning to others and proffering conclusory arguments resembling those that a second-grader may make, then perhaps you need to find something better to do with your time.

      • Dear evan 773:

        God loves you. Gay is a delusion that has nothing to do with your worth as a person, or even your identity as a person. The only thing demeaning you, is your own inability to recognize truth.

      • Human interaction is beyond you, Seeber. Your autism ensures that fact. I am not insulting you – I have Asperger’s myself, though I got treatment for it so have functioned adequately with it. Still, the human race may as well be alien to me in terms of understanding why they act the way they do and what drives them.

        You argue things about a God whom you can’t prove actually exists and biological realities that take no account of personal feelings or the human condition. You also deify nature, as if it were something to be respected and revere.

        Cleft pallate. Sickle cell anemia. Anencephaly. Tubule pregnancy. The designs of your God. We can do better. We should do better. Humanity needs to rise above nature and gods.

      • This is my universe. Our universe, really, at least until we run into another sentient race out there in the cosmos. And we, you included, have already trespassed on the natural order in a multitude of ways. The computer you use to type our your messaged, the electricity that feeds it, the animal husbandry that allows you to enjoy what appears to be bacon wrapper around corn (on your Facebook profile), and much more.

        If you truly believed nature and the universe should be respected you would fly to Africa, strip down naked, and live in the Savannah where your ancestors first walked upright.

      • I said we could. And we already have. Medical science cures diseases every day. We have identified genetic markers for a multitude of nasty diseases so that parents who have such markers can get tested and take appropriate steps to prevent these problems before they happen.

      • Ah, curing is not the same as eliminating. And sure you could breed human beings like racehorses, but I don’t think you’d like the result, since the one of the first things people will try to do is eliminate the mental delusion of homosexuality. Eugenics is not a good answer.

      • Curing diseases is changing the universe and changing nature to suit our needs. Mankind isn’t supposed to live to be one hundred years old. We have science to thank for that. Mankind isn’t supposed to grow crops or tend animals. Human will is to thank for that. Thumbs, enlarged fore brain – all the license we need to “be as Gods”.

  5. Matt,

    Thanks for your reflections. I agree that genuine friendship is often lacking in the church. As a single adult, I find church to be a highly frustrating experience. In most evangelical contexts, church is nothing more than a random agglomeration of independent nuclear family units. I grew up in the PCA, where it’s generally taught that all interpersonal intimacy is reducible to sexual intimacy. So, singles of any sexual orientation get left out in the cold. I just stopped attending about a year ago because Sunday mornings were just too emotionally painful. My closest friends are my non-Christian colleagues and the non-Christians in my running group. I still read the Bible and pray, but I can’t imagine that I’ll ever return to church.

    • Evan, thanks for sharing! I, too, grew up in a PCA church and found the overemphasis on the nuclear family there to be off-putting. I just wrote an article about this you might find interesting (or at least you can send it to your friends!) http://offthepage.com/2015/11/04/creating-space-for-singles/

      I’m now at a PCA church (albeit a very atypical inner-city church) in Baltimore where we are much more inclusive of folks in every walk of life. I don’t know where you live, but I can assure you that there are churches like this out there and I pray that you can find one.

      • Thanks for the link. I had a great experience 3-4 years ago at a PCA church similar to yours in Bal’more. But such churches are pretty few and far between. Best wishes with your transition to Africa.

      • Nice piece.

        I think folks in many churches have difficulty with my happiness at being single. I can see being married someday, but not with kids. I’m a private-equity attorney, who focuses on putting together pharma and biopharma deals. I love my job, but it’s not the job for a family man. In fact, it’s hard to become really good at what you do if you don’t have the freedom to focus. And it takes that kind of commitment to make sure that new ventures beat the odds and succeed. The same goes for medicine. Many major medical breakthroughs are accomplished by folks who are unencumbered by family responsibilities (or who are willfully neglecting those responsibilities). And that’s what gets lost in evangelical churches. In my experience, most professional singles are driven far more by the desire for excellence than by selfishness. But it’s hard to find an evangelical church where there’s any appreciation for that.

        I do think that being a family man can often make you a better professional in certain circumstances. For example, I’d probably rather have a PCP who’s got a family. But there are plenty of other instances where that’s simply not the case. That reality shouldn’t mean that those professions are off limits to Christians.

      • Matthew: I am also a physician (psychiatrist) in Baltimore (Mount Vernon).
        I, too, subscribe to “First Things” and “American Conservative.” Though I am more libertarian than conservative, I enjoy both those magazines and learn a good deal from them.

        I wish you well in your work in the Sudan.

        Julia Soler.

  6. Hi Matt, I appreciate your perspective, but I am a bit puzzled by your suggestion that “Conservative Christians who believe in a traditional sexual ethics should flip the script and let gay Christians do the directing for a while” since you say “Most have endured enough unjustified external ostracism and internal spiritual struggle to be worth listening to.” Going from one extreme to another is not my idea of understanding; going from one “unjustified rejection” to another does not seem to me to be the healing process. But, to use your metaphor, I agree that we all need to “flip the script.” I suspect that is what thoughtful person on the spiritual journey are trying to do. But it is not follow to flip from one ego centric wounded-self-love to another. Are we not always, as Merton reminds, a novice, humbly trying to listen and learn and love? I just think the “conservative-gay” thing is the problem of a false dichotomy: we are all called to flip the script to read the Word made Flesh who created us to enter the friendship (since this is all about Spiritual Friendship) with the One who embodies and inspires Triune communion. Perhaps the better metaphor is, “flip the switch” on listening/speaking. By grace, I am listening a little more than I used to. As it is, I’ve said too much. Shalom.

    • “Are we not always, as Merton reminds, a novice, humbly trying to listen and learn and love?”

      Not sure who Merton is but he has a foolishly childish view of human interactions if he thinks we are all trying to “listen and learn and love”. Organizations don’t work that way. Victory is what is important. Smear your enemies, drive them into the shadows, and destroy them if your society allows it. Protect your culture and destroy or keep out the rest. That is what seems to drive men.

      Also, the authors point stands well enough. Who better to learn about LGBT people and what they have suffered than letting them have the floor to lead the conversation? You wouldn’t try to understand what it is like to be a black kid growing up poor in Los Angeles by talking to rich Chinese business man who runs a corporation in the heart of Hong Kong.

      • Not the only novice. And it is *our* dystopia. We share this endless struggle, you, I, and everyone. Even when the LGBT have won this fight, fully, mankind will continue looking for yet another lesser to spit on, kick, and blame for the world’s problems. They’ll still cry out to gods of their own creation for guidance, then judgement for their foes, then mercy for themselves when their gods bring forth no judgement and they are called to account for their actions, a prayer that will be similarly answered by empty skies.

      • It may be a dystopia to you, who cling to a delusion, but there is as much good as evil in the world to the rest of us. I’m very against discrimination, and gays have it pretty good compared to the “unwanted”. At least nobody tries to murder you in the womb yet (they might if the cause is found to be pre-natal, as they do Downs Syndrome children now).

  7. “If we are going to keep fighting for the values of marriage and family in our culture (and we should!), we should take our cues from the people who have defended these values at great personal loss and even mudslinging from their own Christian allies.”

    I have never faulted the Tim Bayly, Austin Ruse, and others who view the Side B and Spiritual Friendship movement with suspicion and derision, as far as tactics are concerned. Strip away the emotions and you can see the danger that openly LGBT folks in churches pose, even if they uphold an orthodox theology. Our enemies would prefer we disappear, back into the closets, because you can’t rile up and instill hatred in LGBT people in the youth while there is an open member like Wesley or Ron in your congregation.

    Even if Wesley and Ron remain celibate and stick it out, I put myself back in my old Life Teen youth group and wonder what I would have thought. As a teenager, my thoughts would have been something along the lines of “What’s the big deal? This guy seems like a good guy. I don’t see how his being gay makes him any different from me. He does good work as an usher, he runs a CCD class, etc.”

    Their presence is sedition by it’s very existence.

    • I don’t have a problem with the “Side B” folks. Back in the Early 1990s, when working on AIDS hospices, we had no problem incorporating gays into our Life Teen and Newman groups.

      That changed with the push for same sex marriage. When Holy Redeemer in San Francisco was vandalized by militant gays, I knew that the ability to outreach was gone forever.

      The problem is heterophobia and a denial of the delusion that same sex attraction is.

      • We agree on that point.

        There can be no peace in this regard and the hopes and dreams of the Side B are naive. Though they are my brethren, they are living their lives among wolves. There can be only victory or postponement of eventual victory in war, including cultural wars. We either deny ourselves and call what we are delusion or we succeed and crush our enemies under the tide of our acceptance in society. There can be no lasting compromise.

      • Putresvigil: I so agree with you that the presence of uncloseted gay persons in parishes will rapidly end their demonization. The same thing will happen that happened in the rest of society. There will be the initial shock and newness. Then the attitude becomes “ho-hum”; they are basically like us. The Crisis folks know this; I suspect that, at some level Pope Francis does too.

        Eventually it will become DADT ( don’t ask; don’t tell.) Just as persons who remarry without annulment of their first marriage(s) can take communion without separatingfrom/civilly divorcing their second spouse (for prudential reasons) as long as they live as “brother and sister”, so will those nice guys who civilly married for the health insurance and joint tenancy be able to take communion because they are living as brother and brother. Eventually it may evolve like “artificial” contraception and assisted fertility–the actual practice by Catholics indistinguishable from their peers; like usury, it will be off the radar.

        Depending on how quickly this happens, there may be a cohort of side B’s that sacrifices its youth ( the time for romance and sex) to a dogma that they see changed by the time they are older…kind of sad to think about.

      • Those who are afraid of “breeders”. Those who think vandalizing churches and running families out of the city is reasonable behavior. Those who march half naked in “Gay Pride Parades” attempting to recruit children. Those who actively use sex abuse to create homosexuality. Those so-called “Straights” who are so afraid of their own fertility that they use contraception, abortion, and divorce to avoid being parents.

        There are plenty of heterophobes out there- people who are so afraid of heteronormative procreation that they will do anything to avoid it.

    • Hi,

      I can see another way the so call “cultures war” could end. It involves scientific research to identify the causes of homosexuality and the development of effective solutions to eliminate those causes.

      • And who will pay for this research into these cures, I wonder? You may as well propose research for curing people of being left handed. Nobody will throw their money behind something that medicine and science have deemed to be a natural, benign variation from the norm. More likely, we will move on when the last vestiges of resistance to equality have been erased by time and we will turn our sights on some new out-group that threatens the status quo.

      • Those of us who actually love people who experience Same Sex Attraction, and who know how incredibly harmful it is, would. I’d gladly give to a kickstarter to wipe out homosexuality.

        As for your “medicine and science”, more like “politics and bribery” by the way that the APA was actively lobbied to change the DSM-III-TR back in the 1970s, without any evidence. Your equality is just hatred for homosexuals.

      • Well, I’m all for scientific research. I wouldn’t count on a way to change sexual orientation any time soon though. It seems to be formed early–perhaps in utero–and involves deeper brain structures. The latter especially would be difficult to change. Also the brain is so intertwined that it is difficult to change only one thing in it.

      • Seeber,

        Science doesn’t bend forever to politics. If your side had any merit, some study or revolutionary study would have come along to prove homosexuality is a disorder. There has been no such study. Truth is, it never should have been in the DSM. There was never evidence for it belonging there. Further, the studies that have attempted to make such assertions (most current being the Regnerus debacle) have engaged in deliberate falsehood to push their view.

        If God is on your side, why isn’t reality? Why isn’t the evidence?

      • The way science is done today, is all politics. Scientists on my side find their papers rejected outright for publication, and if their faith becomes known, they are fired regardless of tenure and censored. Even if they are in other areas, such as physics or computer science, becoming known for sticking up for traditional marriage will get you fired.

        Maybe someday that will change, but for now, the heterophobes have the political power and might to censor anything that resembles dissent.

  8. Spiritual Friendship valuable to straight people, and a great blessing? Yessss!

    I discovered SF this past year, and… it’s been a huge burst of encouragement.
    Like, “Whoa, these people are fellow sojourners…”

    Reading SF and such… has really given me confidence that I don’t need to be ashamed of the Christian view of sexual ethics.
    And at the same time, it’s stretched my willingness to think about the difficulties gay people face WAAAY more than ever before.

    Also, I liked your discussion of being a “culture warrior.”
    I think that’s something I always want to be, but am never quite sure about seeking.
    If I’m understanding correctly, one thing you’re saying is: being a culture warrior can be a very good thing, but the temptation to use wrong means is gonna be huge.
    Is that part of it?

  9. Pingback: Dinner Invitations, Yes, but also Sharing Houses | Spiritual Friendship

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