Thursday, September 22, 2011

Thankful for Affirmed Diversity

Today on NPR, I heard Brad Pitt interviewed.  He stated that he will not get married until all Americans can be married.  He called upon the Declaration of Independence’s claim of life, liberty and pursuit of happiness.  
So thankful am I that I serve in a work environment where the personnel manual is explicit that we will not discriminate based upon sexual orientation.  I recall the meeting when that phrase was added to the final draft.  I remember the joy in my soul that it was not I who turned the conversation to that topic, though I was prepared to do so.  Thankful am I that the phrase was accepted and affirmed.
So thankful am I that I serve in a context that has affirmed diversity among our leadership.  Note that the implication about membership.  That among our leaders is represented a diversity of orientation.
So thankful am I that I serve a faith community that has sponsored multiple candidates for ordination - what a blessing!  And that those candidates represent a diversity of orientation.  And that those candidates could serve openly within my faith community and have their ministry affirmed, celebrated and when they left their ministry was missed.  
So thankful am I that I serve in a faith tradition that celebrates an open table.  What a blessing to gather around a communion table with others who affirm the lordship of Jesus Christ to the extent of claiming Jesus lord of the table and not us.  Remembering that Jesus ministered to all, reached out to all, and made room at the table for all ... including a diversity of orientation at our table today.
So thankful am I to serve in a state that affirms the union of people of diverse orientations.  What a blessing that I am able to officiate the union ceremonies of those who have lived in committed, loving, blessed relationships for years.  How humbling to witness the depth of their profound devotion to and adoration of each other.  
I do not intend to brag of serving the perfect church.  Neither do I forget the grind of these times.  
The Spirit of God provides glimpses of something more beautiful that is intended for each and all of us.  So thankful am I that we can experience and share that “something more beautiful” here on earth with other children of God - in all the diversity that God created.