Monday, July 18, 2005

Visit to The Tab's Small Group

I went to one of the small groups that The Tab offers during the week. Each group is going through Rick Warren's "Purpose Driven Life". I've heard about it plenty of the times and was never really interested in giving the book a chance. Even though I was super tired after a long day of meetings at work today, I still decided to go to the small group to see "what's up".

I went with an open mind and with my radar on for any red flags. Just like yesterday at the church service, my first impression was very positive. In fact, i listened very very closely to what was being said and how it was being said. I was extremely shocked to realize that every conversation sounded just like any other small group i've been to - except this group sounded like mature believers. Every word they said was Christ focussed - giving authority to the Word as Scripture. In fact, i was very impressed by the contributions that people had to the discussion. There was no emphasis on the gay lifestyle at all. In fact, there were times when I forgot that some of them were gay. The conversation really sounded like the kinds of things discussed at a "straight" group. Now sure, physically by looking at them, you could tell they were gay. One guy was very flamboyant and spoke with what I call the "gay accent" in the tone of his voice - but every word that came out of his mouth was that of a mature believer.

Every person there was welcoming and accepting of me in the group. I also was noticing that I sensed more life in this group than I do at my "straight" house church (which i'm feeling is super dead right now spiritually). The people in this group spoke with fresh enthusiasm and they knew the scriptures. But more than that, they spoke out of love for the scriptures. I found this to be very surprising.

The one and only thing i noticed, which was very subtle but i caught it because i was paying so close attention, was that when the leader read scripture, she always said "God" instead of "Him" or "Father". I know this is something i'm going to have to look into - but at first glance, at least the leader wasn't saying "she" or "goddess" or "it". She did say Christ and Jesus without any substitutions. But "God" seemed like the most diplomatic term to use in that context. I wonder if doing that emasculates God is some way....hmmm? Anyway, this was the only thing odd that i noticed (except for the fact that they were gay).

Another thing that I noticed was that they acknowledged the evil of mysticism. I had heard several times prior about this book/movie called "What the bleep are we here for?" I heard that it had new age-ish content. Well, the leader brought up the book/movie and totally acknowledged the deception of its teachings which talked about everyone being God and that we couldn't possibly offend God if we were all God. I liked that she and everyone else denounced such mysticism, but i found it ironic that many of them are in homosexual but monogamous relationships and don't feel that to be offensive to God. Main stream christians would say that their homosexuality is offensive to God.

As i thought about it, i realized that they all don't make a big deal about their homosexuality because they don't see their monogamous relationships as sin. Because of this, its a non-issue. I think that's why I kept going in expecting an overemphasis on it in both the church service and in the small group, but instead they carry on just like heterosexual christians do. I doubt heterosexual christians are conscious of the fact that they are heterosexual while worshipping or in church. That's the way these people christians who were gay. They call themselves Christians. They talk like Christians. They proclaim that Jesus Christ is the only way, truth and the life. They believe that you must be born again. It's just that.....they are also gay.

No comments: