As June comes to a close, we look past our culture’s annual recognition of “Pride month.” While we don’t like to talk about the subject, it is something we must deal with. We need to have a clear understanding of how we are going to navigate the conversations with our students and communities. We don’t want to be known as a people of hate, but there comes a time when we must stand for truth. So here a few tips for working with your students:
• Speak the truth of Scripture. Don’t be afraid to share what the Bible says on the subject. Study and make sure you are accurately handling the Word. Preach truth. Even when it is unpopular, preach truth.
• Act in love. There is no doubt that our world and those that hold other viewpoints need an understanding of the love God has for them. Too often, the truth of the Word comes across as hate. Those connected to the LGBQT+ community are looking for love, just like any other segment of society. It is important that we act in love toward those that might be seen as unlovable.
• Don’t expect unbelievers to act as Christ-followers. Too often, we expect the world to act like they know Jesus even when they don’t. We can guilt or pressure others into surface change, but lasting change only occurs with the power of the gospel.
• Seek to understand. We need to read and listen so that we will have a greater opportunity to reach those with a secular understanding of marriage and sexuality. We have a tendency to simply shut out the opposing voices we come across. There is a time for that. However, there are other times in which it is vital to listen. Sin is still sin, but listening shows care and concern. Let’s listen.
The world will continue to see us as purveyors of hate speech. As we speak the truth of God’s Word, we will offend those around us. We must pray for God’s guidance and the courage to stand boldly as we navigate this unusual culture.