Thursday, December 16, 2010

         So it's been a few weeks. Maybe really just a week I'm not quite sure, but quite a bit has happened. But really I think quite a bit happens period when you go to a bible study. This post for my blogs may not be as long as my first, because I don't have as much pent up frustration and it doesn't cover the span of several months. However, there is a very good learning aspect from this short time. The one thing I continue to notice as a grow with these people at Radiant Love is that I always come out of hanging out with them with some new knowledge. Maybe a new perspective on things, or maybe something just completely out there that I never knew.

         To start off I think I should begin with lunch with garrett and heather. We went to La Stradas, which has the best pizza so everyone should go there, and had a nice little 3-4 hour lunch convo thing. Now, most of what was brought up wasn't surprising nor has it never been heard of before. However Garrett decided to get calamari there, something I previously thought utterly disgusting and would never try. However, somehow we got onto some topic where I noticed Garrett was being very closed minded and wouldn't look at something from an outside point of view. Then I noticed I was being the same exact way by prejudging what calamari is like without trying it first. So I took that moment to prove to myself that I wouldn't be closed minded ever, in any situation, and plopped a piece in my mouth. It wasn't at all bad, and I never would have  known that octopus could taste good had I decided to been closed minded. Which I think really speaks about a lot of things in life if you relate it to that same situation. So I vow now to never judge something before I try it.

        Let's move forward to later that night I ended up hanging out with Garrett, Camilo, Alejandro, Kayla, Kresten, and Josh. All great people. We were just hanging around and eventually bibles got passed out and they did some kind of mini bible study thing, I didn't take the bible because personally I won't touch one because I don't like them. However for the first time I witnessed in this little group that there were different opposing views on things. Not so much arguments, nor do I mean they don't agree at all. But if one person doesn't see something the way someone else sees it, they talk about it like grown adults and come to a conclusion on what something means and how to go about things. I thought it was very interesting to see that and it was very commendable. The night wore on and we had some interesting discussions. Marijuana views are completely independent from person to person and is different in so many ways for each person. Eventually I obviously had to leave, but not because I wanted to. But because I had to. It was 3:30 am and I had work in 5 hours and I never did end up sleeping so I ended up staying up for 26 hours ( yay...).

       Fast forward about 15 hours after sleeping for so long and I ended up on Thursday for bible study. This was going to be a neat bible study, because I actually knew someone who was there (yay!). Garrett had been talking to Courtney, an old neighbor of mine, and she ended up coming which was great! The study was on money to give a general idea. About giving and who to give and how much and so on and so forth, everything and every answer for it in the bible. Now, obviously if I'm a non-christian you would assume that I would gain nothing from this at all because I don't believe in a God to give money to and I don't go to a church right? Wrong. I actually learned a valuable life lesson that I've been ignoring a lot as of late. That life lesson would be Priorities. It taught me that I need to really know what my priorities are and that I need to not spend money on useless crap I don't need, like random fish and tanks that cost 140$ and I never ended up liking them after the first day, and spending it on things that I do REALLY need. Such as college. I also learned that I really need to start saving some of my money. While many christians give 10% of their income to the church, I really should be putting 10% AT LEAST in my savings account. It would be nice to know that if I fall on my ass I have money to cover me.

         Now one thing I learned after the study was that when it comes to sexuality I stand quite firm on what I believe. Many people want you to believe that homosexuality is a choice or something you get as you grow up as a mental condition, well I'm here to clear the air that it's not like that at all. It's literally biological and to the core. I'm quite content with going to hell and burning for eternity for my sexuality, because I'd rather die a homosexual than a heterosexual because a belief system tells me so. In the coming weeks I'm apparently going to be meeting a gay-reform-christian thingymabobber. It's likely going to be a heated discussion. I'm fully expecting to cry. I also wouldn't be surprised if voices were raised and we got some stares if we're in public.

       The odd thing about this past week for me though has been that I was able to take something for myself out of a study on the bible, which I truly dislike, that I can use for my life. So as much as I really do not like the bible, I'm finding that within its many pages of horror, discrimination, prejudice, and hate; that there is life lessons that can be applied for everyone. Whether you be Christian, Atheist, Agnostic, or Purple. And that's good to know that I can get something like that out of Christianity. Something I never expected to find along this journey. If people were less afraid of things, and they got to know things.... they could learn so much. Homophobes should speak with homosexuals. Racists should speak to people of color. Anti-Semitics should speak with someone who follows Judaism. The world could be such a better place with all the patience and understanding you gain from looking through the other end of the looking glass. Well, that's my rant. And thanks to everyone who reads. I'm hoping to keep doing this for a while. It's quite therapeutic :)



  1. Sweet boy, you do not and will not go to hell for being homosexual. Nor would anyone go to hell for murdering. Or getting divorced, or having an abortion. Any of those things. I would call myself a Christian and I believe that God loves His children, and he allowed you to be born the incredibly unique and special way you were because He wanted you to teach people about what it's like to be different, and to teach them acceptance. "Sin" in the Bible is pretty much anything that could harm you. That's why it says it's a sin for heterosexuals to have sex outside of marriage (which I do not agree with), and that homosexuality is a sin. If you practice safe sex, like any other heterosexual, HOMOSEXUALITY IS NOT HARMFUL TO YOUR WELL-BEING! Heterosexuality has caused enough diseases and issues for people as is. I don't agree with the fact that the Bible states homosexuality in itself is a sin. I agree with the biological basis of homosexuality and I believe that if God allows it and created you that way, why would existing the way he made you be a sin? I know of several homosexual couples that are FAR less promiscuous than heterosexuals. I think that gays should be allowed to marry so that God can hold them to the same standard that he holds heterosexuals when it comes to respecting the grounds of marriage and SEX. We are all human beings, just with different desires, so there should not be a seperate (or more harsh) rule book! I am a right wing heterosexual and I think that we have ruined marriage as a sacred practice. So to those people who think that "gays will ruin marriage"... we've done enough damage ourselves with getting married too young, marrying someone we weren't truly committed to, or violating the sacrament of marriage in itself by cheating, having children with people other than our spouses etc. Chad, I love that you came out and are very ardent about what you believe. That is a very valuable trait. However, please do not hate God for what Christians have done to you. I myself refused to attend church for years because I was afraid of the judgement and criticism that I'd recieve for decisions I've made in my life, but God is completely set apart. I'm close with Him and I treat Him like a father figure. Just like a Muslim treats Allah, and a hindu treats a paternal god. It's a realtionship all it's own and it's beautiful. I don't even take the Bible as God's final word because you know what? It was physically written by man, and I believe that just as man has a rotten core, man has the ability to alter words (even those that they claim are holy) to their own beliefs and biases. I believe what God tells me through my morals and how He speaks to my heart. Even if you do not find God, I hope that you find inner peace because you do deserve it, and I wish you the happiest life you could have, with the man of your choosing! =)

  2. P.S. One way I've made peace myself is to love those who are not like me. I really strive to understand people of different faiths, genders, and ideas. There are useful things in the Quran, Torah, Bible, and Buddhist teachings. I love the story of Buddha, I love the idea that one man would be so bent on loving and putting it all on his own shoulders to heal all the brokeness in this world. But then again, so was Jesus. The arabic word "Allah" appears in the original Hebrew translation of the Bible many times. Coincidentally the same word that Muslims use to praise and honor their god. I have yet to wonder if we all want the same thing. We all live for a pursuit of happiness, pursuit of justice, and the love or approval of a higher power that created us. As Mohandas Ghandi said, "God has no religion" and I believe that.

  3. "For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. 13 And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are open and laid bare to the eyes of Him with whom we have to do." Hebrews 4 12

    God has no religion, your correct, but Jesus Christ is the ONLY way and the word of God is his words. The word of God is not written by man. "For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit." 2 Peter 1 21 For God to be alive, it means he has the power to preserve his word throughout the ages till the end. Men cannot interfere because God is in control of all men and anything on earth.

    Sin is not anything that physically harms your body, but anything that is harmful to your soul and what God hates. "Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? DO NOT BE DECEIVED: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God."

    By what you believe Hollie, you are denying Jesus as the son of God and are not a disciple of Christ. "Do not be afraid. I am the First and the Last. I am the living One; I was dead, and behold I am alive for ever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and Hades."
    You can;t pick and choose what you want to believe, then you are only trusting in yourself and denying Gods sovereign power.

  4. Hollie, this is why I have so much respect for you! I really admire people who allow themselves to think outside the box for a moment to really think about situations, especially ones such as these.

    Garrett Hush. Hollie can believe whatever she wants. Just like you can.

  5. Garrett, now that I know your lovely name. I do love Jesus Christ and I do believe He is the only way to salvation. I'd rather die than deny Him as the one who died for me. I simply did not cite every single one of the beliefs I hold true because some of them were not relevant to what Chad needed to hear. To my understanding, he needed to know that God was capable of looking at him as a child of His. He wants God to be able to love him and accept him the way God created him to be. I didn't want to beat him over the head with a Bible, much like people tried to do to me repeatedly through most of my childhood. I struggled as a kid with an eating disorder, an alcoholic dad, a mom who used to leave my infant brother in a crib crying for hours at a time while she went shopping, not having enough money to pay the bills, and living on my own through some of my teenage years. There was alot of pain there, and I didn't know why I had to grow up at such a young age. I hated God for awhile because I was so hurt by what I was allowed to experience. Much like Chad in his sexuality. He shouldn't have to deal with what he dealt with in the church with rejection, because that is not God speaking. That is a fallen group of "believers" speaking false prophecy for Him. I went to school with Chad and he was a sweet friend to me, sweet like any other heterosexual friend I had, and I didn't even know he was gay at the time. I can’t imagine a God that I’d be willing to follow and worship that was much unlike the God I serve, who loves every single bit of His creation and forgives “sin”. I don’t understand myself why God would create someone a certain way, to be attracted to a certain gender, then automatically set them up to be damned. Chad probably struggles with this too. This is coming from a right wing, yellow dog conservative. And I believe gays should be allowed to marry, and I believe God loves them and accepts them just as much as he accepts you and me. I don’t claim to have all the answers, I am a skeptic myself. The greatest religious intellectuals are people who open-mindedly question everything. That is not blasphemy or denying God to do so. All many of His followers did was to ask questions. If I did not ask questions of my government, of the relationships I’m in, of the religious leaders in my community, I would be a sheep lead to the slaughter. I do, however, not question God. Or Jesus Christ. Or salvation. So with all due respect, of which you have afforded me none… you’re predicament that I’m going to hell myself, and not a follower of Christ was ignorantly miscalculated on your behalf. I know my God. Apparently we worship a different higher beings because yours apparently facilitates bashing people's beliefs with scripture. MY God is the same God that has watched my heart break since I was a little girl, and He is the same God that healed it, and is leading me to be a well-rounded, thoughtful adult. I am whole because of Him. I want Chad to feel that he has a chance. If you simply use Christianity and our beliefs as your only basis of faith, it makes you look bigoted. Try approaching it from the place where Chad is, someone who has questions, who is seeking, and has been trying to understand us better.

  6. You just slapped someone like him, with questions, with beliefs of her own publicly and in front of him using the very word of God that he questions. Using Bible verses to change the heart of an unbeliever is irrelevant because most of them don't believe in the relevance of the Bible. Takes one to know one, brother. Maybe for historical accuracy, but they don't see it the way you do as a supreme evidence of the sovereignty of Christ. It is not your job to judge my heart, because God is the only judge of me. Of anyone. Chad should know that he can tune out all of these people who say there is something wrong with him, because he was fearfully and wonderfully made just like the rest of us. It’s not going to change. I believe homosexuals are born into homosexuality. It’s not a product of a raising. Because of the way I was raised and my dad’s lack of presence in my life, I’d be a lesbian if that were true. But no, I simply have a strong need for an approving man in my life because I was born the way I was, but I was born heterosexual and will always be. Chad came out the way he did because he was born that way just as I was born the way I was. God loves him. I don’t care what you think of me, but God loves him.

  7. I think I just cried. I need to see you hollie so I can give you a bear hug.

  8. Hey Hollie I appreciate your heart and everything you said,but the reason why i stick to scripture and not lean on my own perspective is because it is Gods word. Even Jesus was hated by many and people tried to kill him because of the truth he spoke.

    I am not judging you at all, I am merely speaking what Gods word has said, if I did not stick to scripture and leaned on my own understanding then feel free to rebuke me.

    I agree that God loves him, as do I, which is why I stick to the truth when I talk to him, even if Chad does not agree.

    And I completely agree about how you say we should question everything. "Test everything. Hold on to the good." 1 thess 5 21

    Something you'll have to learn to understand though is that every word in the bible is from God, which means you can't pick and choose only what sounds good to your ears. There is alot of meat in the bible that is more bitter then sweet. We each have our sin that we need to be cleansed from before we turn to Christ

  9. THe verse I used previously is a good example of that, "But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God." I had my sin that is very shameful to most and I gave it up because God offers us something so much better, it really comes down to the fact of if you love your sexual pleasure more then God in a situation such as homosexuality. through the Holy Spirit we have the power to overcome our old way of living. all sin is sin, some is worse off then others, but consciously we know what is right and wrong in Gods eye. That is why it says the word of God is a double edged sword.

    I recently became a believer and am right there with you with how you used to hate God, but thankfully a lot of things happened, which at the time I hated, that brought me to Christ and the Holy Spirit has trained me to stick to scripture and use it in every situation. We can;t lean on our own understanding.

    When speaking the truth, it is important to do it in love, "By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another."
    I apologize if anything I said did not seem to be in a loving way, but over something such as facebook it is extremely hard to see where the heart of a person is at.

    But please do not feel as if I am condemning you, everything I said was backed up by scripture so it is something you should ask God to reveal to you, I am merely here to hold true to his word.