Who needs original content when you can share stories as wonderful as this one?! It’s titled, “I hugged a man in his underwear. I think Jesus would have, too.”
It tells the story behind the picture you see here —————>
I don’t want to give too much away, but…
Watching people recognize our apology brought me to tears many times. It was reconciliation personified.
My favorite though was a gentleman who was dancing on a float. He was dressed solely in white underwear and had a pack of abs like no one else. As he was dancing on the float, he noticed us and jokingly yelled, “What are you sorry for? It’s pride!” I pointed to our signs and watched him read them.
Then it clicked.
Then he got it.
He stopped dancing. He looked at all of us standing there. A look of utter seriousness came across his face. And as the float passed us he jumped off of it and ran towards us. In all his sweaty beautiful abs of steal, he hugged me and whispered, “thank you.”
If the word “reconcile” isn’t already bouncing around in your brain… let me put it there for you.
Reconcile: 1) To cause a person to accept or be resigned to something not desired. 2) To win over to friendliness; cause to become amicable. 3) To compose or settle a quarrel, dispute, etc. 4) To bring into agreement or harmony.
Obviously, many of our LGBTQ friends need to find a way to reconcile their sexual orientation and their faith. Many of us also need to be reconciled with the church. But let’s not forget that while it’s important for us to be reconciled (brought happily back together with) both our sexuality and the church, it’s even more important that we be won over by, brought into harmony with, and reconciled to God.
The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him… For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.
Don’t miss that the writer of Colossians tells us that God was PLEASED to reconcile all things to himself. God was happy to do it. The word the writer used for “pleased” literally means “found to be good by means of a test.”
The point? God sat down and decided whether he thought being in a relationship with us – all of us – was a good idea… and decided that it was. The idea of a relationship with us made God happy. So God did what was necessary to make peace with us.
He didn’t make conflict, demands, or guilt. He made peace. With us. All of us. Just as we were. Just as we are. And so, perhaps we should follow the example of the underwear clad man above (and another son in another great story), and allow ourselves to be reconciled…