When I read the review on 21Myths that said it was naive to think that loving gay people was enough, I thought to myself, but love never fails.
The review said that people get very angry when you tell them they disagree with their lifestyle. I thought, since when did Jesus tell people he disagreed with their lifestyle? The only time he told them that was when they called themselves believers and didn’t love people from the heart.
When I overcame my fear of writing the chapter on homosexuality, I could have never guessed about Orlando:
“Sometimes we are so afraid of what we don’t understand — of what we cannot see. I get this. I think Christians are afraid of gay pride parades. They fear transgender people. They don’t now what to do about their relative or friend who is gay or bisexual. So we grasp tight on the steering wheel for control, and no matter how hard we squeeze, we can’t fix the thing we don’t understand. In my mind, God is saying to let go of trying to change people and to love them wholeheartedly, from the heart. Look past a person’s struggles and offer them — right in the middle of their mess — the free gift of life.
Unless we choose to get involved in their lives in a loving way, they may never know how much God loves them.
p.s. There is no fear in love, for perfect love drives out fear. Let’s find ways to pursue people in the LGBT community and to love them in uncommon ways.” (21Myths, Myth #14)
Well, here’s our chance folks. The pain and suffering that has swept our nation from the massacre in Orlando is our chance to finally reach out to those who look and act differently than us and love them in uncommon ways.
Jesus never approached someone by telling them he disagreed with their lifestyle (unless they were greedy or judgmental.) On the contrary, he approached people with love, with kindness, with living water.
There are people in Orlando who need your prayers today. There is someone who needs a place to rest and cry and be held.
The church should be this place. I should be this place. You too.
WHAT OTHERS ARE SAYING
At the age of 18, I was recovering from an eating disorder, cutting, and suicide when I read Jennifer Strickland’s book Girl Perfect and it changed my life. At the age of 33, as I travel the world reaching youth for the gospel, this is the only book I recommend to girls who are struggling. The Lord has truly anointed Jennifer’s words through her story, not only to address the struggles of today’s generation of girls, but also to walk them through the healing necessary for victory.
Jennifer is a captivating speaker. She keeps the listener hanging in wonder of what’s coming next! Her presentation is not only absorbing, it reveals the truth of God’s power to heal a wounded spirit.
Barbara Brown, Former Stonecroft Ministries Regional Representative, San Diego, CA
“The ‘P’ word [perfection] may be the heaviest burden women bear. All the misguided things we do to attain it can keep us away from what we need most – the unconditional love of God the Father. The Girl Perfect Study Guide gives you a map to the wholeness you were created for.”
Nancy Ortberg, author and former teaching pastor at Willow Creek Community Church
“The Girl Perfect Study Guide shatters the lies girls and women believe and points to the ultimate truth, which really does set us free. I am confident that this study will help thousands discover a beauty, purpose, and worth that truly lasts. Thank you Jen for exposing the ‘perfect life’ and inviting girls to experience God’s ‘perfect love.'”
Allie Marie Smith
Allie Marie Smith, Founder of Wonderfully Made
One of the best testaments to what Jennifer is doing for the young girls and women of today is a comment from my eleven-year-old granddaughter: “Grammy, I want to read this book and hear her again. She’s good and I learned a lot.” This is exactly what I experienced from a grown-up perspective when I was introduced to Jennifer Strickland’s amazing story. Read it and see if you don’t get the real story from an icon model and a powerful speaker of truth.”