Shifting culture presents opportunities and threats. The opportunity: to progressively reveal Christ in ever authentic ways. The threat: to avoid getting sidetracked by panic reactions to rapid change.
The trouble is that rapid change triggers fear. In the last year, a few ministry leaders expressed concerns about Lead Them Home’s focus on anti-gay bullying and gay teen suicide prevention. One said, “This promotes homosexuality.” Another said, “I worry that this kind of compassion will force evangelicals to change their beliefs.”
These leaders might as well be saying: “I don’t want to know this. It makes me sad, and I fear this sadness will cause many to change their theological beliefs. So please turn off the projector.”
Effective ministry occurs when we discover incredible opportunities amid all the threats. Helplessness turns to humility which produces dependency which yields Christ-inspired creativity. Commitment to this approach has increased my compassion: and strengthened my biblical beliefs.
Theology that can stand only if information is ignored is unsustainable, but theology that can learn how to respond to threats increases its sustainability. If I have to close my eyes to keep my beliefs, I might as well be blind. I do not want to live out the Gospel with eyes wide shut.
NOTE: When learning about the vulnerabilities of gay teens cripples us with fear of theological collapse, we have a religion problem. Thankfully, we encounter “hundreds” of ministry leaders highly committed to increasing care of gay teens for every leader who closes their eyes to the suffering before them. Where are we going? We’re going to rescue hurting young people empowered by the love of Jesus Christ. Yes and amen…
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