Ok, when I first wrote this post (and re-wrote it, and re-wrote it, and re-wrote it…) I spent roughly 1000 words explaining why I personally support traditional marriage. But, now I’m erasing that and saving it for some other time, as I feel like I want to express something else.
Also, let’s be clear…I only speak for myself here. Not the LDS Church. Not other Christians. Just me…
I do support traditional marriage, and the reasons why have everything to do with my feelings about God and His plan. But, at the same time, I want to show my love and support for all people, whether they feel the same about this topic or not. That is a hard position to be in for a person who feels strongly about loving God and feels strongly about loving their fellow men and women. But then I got thinking…exactly how will my feelings about marriage, God’s plan, and other people impact other people? Especially gay people? What does it mean to love God and how, exactly do my views on marriage impact my ability to love my fellow men and women?
I’m not being asked to vote on gay marriage as of right now. We, in my state, did vote on the definition of marriage and a federal judge over-ruled our vote. So, technically, my feelings about marriage will not have an impact on the laws of our land at this point. All I’m left with is my daily interaction with people. And I believe that I can honor Heavenly Father’s feelings on marriage and honor His feelings on how I treat others at the same time.
Here’s a final thought, and I’m not sure where it fits in all of this, I just know that it does. I have a building lot next to mine that is vacant. A few actually. They’re all nice lots where you could build a nice home and raise a family. If a gay couple moved in next door or in the cul-de-sac, we’d be friends with their family. If they had children, our kids would play with them. I’d shovel their walk and driveway (I like using my snow blower, a lot). We’d have cul-de-sac parties where we’d grill stuff. I’d sneak go over and look at their garden every week and I’d mow their lawn when they were on vacation. You see, just because we might be opposite sides of the legal view of marriage, I’m not in opposition to gay people. If a someone were to say, “Hey, that guy supports traditional marriage! He is full of hate!!”, then it would be obvious that they don’t live next to me…
I would suppose that there are Christians (and others) who do have feelings of hatred and bigotry toward gay couples, and those feelings may drive their opposition to gay marriage. I’m not in agreement with them. But either way, you can’t group all people who support traditional marriage into one group of “haters”. That is an oversimplification that is as unfair as you might feel like my views are.
And on the other hand, people who support traditional marriage but who don’t have feelings of hatred toward gay people should never act like those who are full of hate. Efforts to understand and love others who are on the other side of this debate seem more in accordance with God’s will and feelings than being cold, mistrusting, and unfriendly. In most cases you don’t have to violate the second commandment to keep the first.
I know there is much, much more to this subject, but I’ve felt like expressing these thoughts, as poorly written as they are, for some time now.