Buckets and Closets
By: Rev. Suzie Chamness
What an interesting way to begin writing about my gay, lesbian, transgendered or bisexual Christian people. How can I being to think in those terms about myself and my friends?
When I can imagine a bucket I see a container that I use to delve into the well of deep thoughts like the bucket that draws water from a deep dark well. The bucket goes down to the darkness and fills with the secrets of the deep and ever so slowly we draw it into the light of self-awareness. This process draws out those things we cannot see and brings them to the light.
Most of the time our buckets are so much in need of reworking that when we get it to the top of the well, it is empty. Somewhere along the way we forgot to nurture our ability to recognize what we are really made of. The bucket cannot bring to light who we are in our very soul if we don't open our minds for repair.
Think of it as being in that well treading that water, paddling to stay afloat when all we need do is keep our thoughts and deeds in good shape and we can learn to draw from that well. The well is full of our goodness; we just can't always see when we look. We have to draw it up and bring to the light who we are and whose we are.
I think of the closet in much the same way. It is a small space and usually in disarray. At least my closet seems to be that way. It is a space filled with much to learn. It is a place we take pride in hiding our stuff.
That first peek outside that closet is like the first light that that water in the bucket sees. It is the beginning of letting out the secrets that we held inside. It's now out and so are we. As freeing as that is and as much as it sounds simple, it is not.
It should be an enlightening experience for us and in us. It often is a frightening and debasing experience. We have let the proverbial "cat" out of the bag. Even with some of the negative things that can happen, most people still find coming out to be a positive experience.
The virtual rainbow of who we are is beautiful but just like the God built rainbows in the sky following the rain, so we are noticed. It is a wise and prepared person who chooses when they share the good news. The news of being gay - being who we are. We may think we have it all together only to find that wise and prepared soul in us isn't prepared for the reaction of those around us.
We are truly the most colorful people. We are varied as all the colors of the rainbow and we are differently made. Each of us has a unique light to shine for God and to help all people see the true love that shows through this the rainbow of people.
I can't imagine a rain without the rainbow and I can't imagine the world without our colorful rainbow people sharing and showing the love that God shares with us and with all people. Maybe we have stayed in the closet or down in the bucket of the deep dark well of our lives but now should be the time for us to be who we are meant to be.
This world needs all the love that is available. There seems not enough to go around so when we can find that special one(s), love them with all your heart and share the love that God gives to you, with them.
Some day we will be known for our love. I truly believe that. You can't be this beautiful and go through the being hidden for so many years not to have that day of recognition. Our efforts will be appreciated and accepted because we have always known but fear to admit that God made us all very special and gave us a special mission.
It is a mission of helping all people to accept that God loves all people equally and unconditionally. It's an awesome task but one that we will share. Our light is made to shine so that God glory is made known to the world.
We need help in achieving this great task; we need one another and we need that God who loves us all. God holds us up to the world as an example. God validated us by giving us life. We are acceptable in God's sight as a person of value and perhaps given a touch more tolerance and love than many may have.
We can continue to grow spiritually and shine our beautiful colors when we are an example of what God given to us. As Jesus said, "Love one another as I have loved you." Such a simple statement and how troubling it is to many.
Until we, that is all of us, can live together as brothers and sisters and people of God, we can not expect to have the peace on earth or peace within ourselves. The light must shine from us, from all, to be able to light the world in love.
Rev. Suzie Chamness serves as the Interim Pastor of Spirit of Life MCC in New Port Richey, Florida. Contact her by email at revsuzie-at-spiritoflifemcc.org
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