Monday, July 12, 2010

These are simply my thoughts...

Sorry all its been awhile since I posted anything. I must admit I have not really been inspired and haven't thought about much. Well maybe in that its been freeing :). I have spent a lot of time with friends and family over the holidays which I needed. I am perfectly fine with admitting that sometimes I really need a good dose of other people to help me along the way because I am not strong enough to carry my life by myself all the time. Sometimes I think we believe especially as women that we have to fight and carry everything on our own shoulders all the time. Trust me I am one of those women. I do not like asking for help and I want to prove always that I can do it and I will be successful, but as I am growing up (which on a side note I hope to never fully do) I am learning how important it is to lean on those around you who love and care for you.

Although I guess I do have something to share...

I have been watching my husband go through some really emotional battles lately. You see his foundation, The Marin Foundation (TMF) had an idea to attend the Chicago Pride Parade with shirts that read Sorry and write posters apologizing for how the "Church" has collectively dehumanized the treatment of the GLBT community. I was one of those who wore a t-shirt because truly as a Christian and follower of Jesus I was very sorry for the pain and scars that my belief system had bestowed upon a group of wonderful and precious people. My heart hurts for those I have met and the stories of their lives they have shared with me because in many cases they are my fellow Christian brothers and sisters which have caused that pain and left those scars.

So on the morning of the Pride Parade my husband and I went with a group of about 25 people from TMF wearing our Sorry t-shirts. Our intentions were simple as is the intentions of the foundation. We were simply people willing to stand in the gap where so many would not even dare to venture. Yes, I will be true to my Christianity and yes I love my Christian brothers and sisters, but I will also be true to my GLBT brothers and sisters and love them as well. I will stand in the gap for those and attempt to build a bridge between these two communities with TMF!

*PLEASE NOTE I AM NOT MAKING ANY OFFICIAL STATEMENT FOR OR ON BEHALF OF TMF - THESE ARE MY THOUGHTS AND FEELINGS AS A WIFE, FRIEND, AND FOLLOWER OF CHRIST*

You see this campaign which truly had a message of peace, hope, faith, and forgiveness has been perverted by those that want so badly to find the evil in everything. I understand skepticism because I myself am a big skeptic, but I think its important to know that even in this world which is filled with so much evil and malice intentions that there are still those who love with everything and give relentlessly no matter the cost, pain, humiliation, and turmoil.

TMF does not want in any way shape or form to "change" ones sexual orientation but to transform people's lives in either finding a relationship with Christ for the first time or helping those that have been hurt by the faith community have a place to voice their stories and reconnect with the faith they want so badly to still be a part of.

I think on a personal level, outside of TMF, what is so difficult for others to understand is how important a relationship with Jesus is to both my husband and I. We are not fighting about denominations or religious dogma we are simply celebrating in the awesome power of being a follower of Jesus.

I also wanted to share a bit about my husband. One of the characteristics which I fell in love with and others who meet him also love about him is his child like spirit. I don't mean that he is immature, but he does not judge others with the same cynical lens that most of us have unfortunately began to wear. He loves first and very rarely asks questions. He gives everything to those in his life and expects very little in return. He hurts easily and cries often for the pains others have felt. His skin is very thin and he does wear his emotions on the outside. When you listen you feel through him the words of compassion and challenge. He still doesn't understand that people find what he does so foreign, evil, unproductive, and unrealistic. He willingly shoulders the hurt, criticism, scars, skepticism, joy, celebration, healing of every person who shares their story and life journey with him. Each person who has come to him he etches a piece of them into his heart.

For those who want so badly to hate and be skeptical of TMF and my husband its okay he will etch pieces of you into his heart as well. Our prayers will always be for your protection and happiness. I understand its hard to believe that there truly could be a person like this in today's society and world who has not been covered with the sludge of who we are as a society and world and what we have allowed ourselves to become. I too am amazed at how he can still view this world through eyes of total compassion and love. I want so badly to one day remove the judgmental, skeptical, cynical lenses that cloud my eyes and see this world as my husband does as I believe Jesus sees this world.

So with conviction I say I will stand in the gap with my husband and TMF. I will continue to love relentlessly and share the message that all are loved by our Heavenly Father. I will say I am sorry with the purist intentions. I will elevate the conversation and not answer yes or no to questions because that is too easy and I will follow the path less traveled. I will remain true to who I am and challenge those around me to find a better way to love and communicate. I will build a bridge. I will love those who hate, mistreat, call names, judge, lie, spread rumors, misrepresent, and want to eliminate my husband and TMF.

I will stand in the gap with my husband and TMF...

10 comments:

Jon Trouten said...

Sorry, Brenda, for all this mess going on with Andrew and TMF. I've seen and tried to engage some of it on his blog. I continue to keep him in my prayers. I also continue to keep you in my prayers as you travel through your infertility struggles, too. Love, Jon

Super Spy For Jesus said...

Praying for you guys on every level and everything.

I remember when I told a friend in college that when I left school I knew that somehow I wanted to be a missionary. Not a believer ( and she happened to be a Lesbian who had been kicked out of her family), she asked me, "So you are going to go into some country and make everyone act like you?" I remember that conversation so clearly because this is the thought that struck me as I said, "All I can do is offer anyone is the love of Christ. You are right many people have gone in the name of the "church" and have hurt many. But going for Jesus and going for the church are two entirely different things."

We are more subtle now than other times in history- but we still do it. We hide behind religion and in the meantime miss the immeasurable power of who Christ is.

Thanks for being such a strong reflection of Jesus- both of you...

Sarah@EmergingMummy said...

Brenda, I'm a new reader of your blog. But I have to say, even though I haven't met you in person or know you well at all, this made me weep. My heart is full for you and your husband - I empathise, I pray, I love you both. I think that the work you're doing (you - not just your husband) is inspiring and beautiful and Christ-like. I'll link arms with you both any time. Got your back in prayer, from up in Canada.

Monicalyn said...

I don't know you personally either, Brenda, but will certainly offer up prayers for you and Andrew in hopes they will bring you some measure of peace and comfort. It sounds like you've been through some trials lately. I love how you worded your post and shared your insights about your husband's character. Hopefully both of you will stay encouraged to continue to share the LOVE. Blessings, Monica

Brenda S. Marin said...

All thank you so much for your encouragement and prayers. They mean the world to both Andrew and I. We are trying to lean fully on our Lord and Savior for strength and fulfillment. However, these tangible comments are words I can read over and over again and names that I know are praying and believing with both Andrew and I. Thank you thank you thank 1000 times over.

Turtle Woman said...

I always find this odd situation of younger straight christians who are coming into the gay male community. What is your real purpose? What do you really believe? Right now, lesbians and gays are in the streets over civil rights. It is our equivalent of Freedom Riders or integrated restrooms. We are now in the streets and in the courts over the right to marry.

What is it that you do for a living Brenda? Is this just a woman following her husband, or do you have a programs all your own?
Are you 100% for the civil rights of lesbians and gays? Are you 100% for the rights of all women?

Remember, we have been in this war with fundamentalist christianity for a very long time. We have seen the very worst of people who use christ as a kind of hate battering ram against gays and lesbians. Every day, I monitor right wing radio, and every day almost I hear hate speech against lesbians and gays. Just what are you about? Not your husband. Not men, who I blame for this entire crusade against gay people, but you? What do you stand for?

Brenda S. Marin said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Brenda S. Marin said...

Turtule woman - I apparently became too wordy when responding to your comment so I will respond in a new post. As for the deleted comment that was my own comment I mispelled some words and removed it.

Sara said...

I wept when I read the media coverage about this demonstration. How beautiful. And definitely the church I want to be a part of.

Stephanie said...

I first came across your story on Tim Schraeder's blog and was incredibly moved. What a wonderful demonstration of love.

Thank you for being courageous enough to show Christ's love in the face of criticism...and thank you for opening your heart with such tenderness and honesty.

stephanie@metropolitanmama.net