Be the Example

Be the Example





Let no man despise your youth; but be an example to those who believe, in word, in your way of life, in love, in spirit, in faith, and in purity. 1 Timothy 4: 12

I’ve seen several memes over the past few weeks which address the HB2 Bill.  After one meme, which said gender confusion could be solved by simply looking in one’s underwear, I felt the familiar rumblings of the Holy Spirit, and I responded.

“I wish it was that simple for the dozens of teenagers I’ve seen tormented by this struggle over my 10 years of teaching. When we remember children are involved in this, not as victims of men dressed as women coming into the restroom, but as the person who IS fighting a battle with gender identification, perhaps our compassion will return.”

I feel compassion each year when I have to sit through our county’s annual suicide prevention training. A training which shows the faces of innocent kids as young as 10 who take their lives, a training which reminds us the rate of suicide for LGBT teens and adolescents is 300-400 times higher than their peers.

I feel moved by the Holy Spirit when I see memes address this issue in a condescending way, and I remember Jesus’ example.

I remember Jesus touching the leper.  I remember Jesus eating at Matthew’s house with the sinners.  I remember Jesus showing grace to the adulterous woman in the temple.  I remember Jesus witnessing to the woman at the well despite her multiple divorces.

I remember Jesus, and I wonder how we can say we follow the one who walked in light and then support social media posts which contradict that.  I wonder how we can say we feel for the marginalized yet we “love”  and share memes which perpetuate a bullying mentality toward those who are suffering.

People are suffering.  Children and teens are suffering.

People are dying; children and teens are choosing death to escape the suffering.

It’s time for people to educate themselves on life/death topics like this one.

It’s time for us to be an example by shining our lights, not like spot lights on the sinful, but like beacons of hope and love for the hurting, the lonely, and the lost.

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