Fireside 2.1 ( Freemind Blog Wed, 19 Jun 2019 09:00:00 -0400 Freemind Blog en-us Taylor Swift, Can We Calmly Disagree? Wed, 19 Jun 2019 09:00:00 -0400 0023e0b1-b4b7-4236-87ad-2c32c7fe0555 It’s Pride month, most companies have adorned their social media accounts with some version of the LGBT flag, and now Taylor Swift has written a new song and produced an entire music video for the occasion. But more than celebrating Pride, this new music video clearly reveals what Swift and many other LGBT supporters think of those with different convictions. It’s Pride month, most companies have adorned their social media accounts with some version of the LGBT flag, and now Taylor Swift has written a new song and produced an entire music video for the occasion. But more than celebrating Pride, this new music video clearly reveals what Swift and many other LGBT supporters think of those with different convictions.

The title of this new anthem is: You Need to Calm Down. Just listening to its catchy tune and playful lyrics probably won’t raise any red flags, save for a few lines such as:

...control your urges to scream

About all the people you hate

‘Cause shade never made anybody less gay

But watching Swift’s accompanying video paints a striking picture.

Being an LGBT positive video you see all the images expected and every letter represented. We also see the antagonist several times throughout the video, and it becomes apparent how the Christian is featured. Spoilers, here is what we look like:

Could this representation accurately portray some Christians today? Absolutely. Does it include trite sayings and stereotypes? Of course.

But the message this video is sending goes far deeper than the outlandish characters representing the Church. Swift is saying:

Those who hold to Biblical sexuality are wrong, hateful, foolish, simpleminded “morans” that just need to “calm down” and stop speaking up.

How will a teenager or 20-something, Swift’s main demographic, interpret this message? I imagine these thoughts won’t be far off:

I’m on the wrong side.

I don’t hate LGBT people, maybe I should reconsider my beliefs.

All the Christians in this video are old and out of touch, that’s not me.

At the end of the music video, two young people on the “Christian” side, even choose to lay down their signs, representing their convictions, and join the festivities.

This portrayal of LGBT VS Christians has an even more dangerous presupposition: It is impossible to love someone AND declare their actions are wrong.

Taylor Swift, along with popular culture at large want you to believe that loving someone means to accept everything they do and never claim their actions are wrong or sinful. Culture is writing new equations that don’t adhere to truth, namely:

Love = Accepting all lifestyles

Hate = Disagreeing with any lifestyle

But this is not reality. We all have family and friends in our lives where we wholeheartedly disagree with their actions and believe they are wrong.

It is possible to disagree with a person’s choices and actions, yet still love them.

If you had a close friend whose chronic gambling put them at risk of losing their house, family, and everything else, would you not plead with them to stop? Would it not be irresponsible to ignore their behavior, or worse, affirm it?

What if your child identified as an all-F’s student? Would it be loving to allow your daughter or son to fail every test, neglect all study, and bypass all homework because that’s what felt good to them?

Or a family member choosing to drive wildly on their motorcycle and refusing to wear a helmet or any protective gear. Would it be loving to ignore these practices and even encourage they continue?

Yet in all these scenarios, addressing the issue directly and disagreeing with the person’s actions does not mean you hate, loathe, or are disgusted by the person.

You can calmly and lovingly, disagree.

Christians: Be reminded of what the Apostle Paul said about genuine, Godly love. His words seem eerily applicable to today:

Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. Love one another with brotherly affection.

Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight.

‭‭- Romans‬ ‭12:9-10, 14-16

Remember, genuine love is not laying aside the truth or laying aside your convictions for the sake of acceptance. We do not hate, slander, or insult anyone, but we must hold fast to Biblical standards lest we break the greatest commandment: Love the Lord your God.

Do not believe the lie that you must affirm someone’s lifestyle to love them. Do not think you are foolish or hateful standing for truth. You can calmly disagree, and when asked about the hope that is in you, share the Gospel of Jesus Christ, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes.

For further discussion on genuine love, Pride month and the Christian response, please listen to the latest Freemind podcast episode on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, or wherever you listen to shows.

Response to ThinkProgress Chick-fil-A Article Thu, 21 Mar 2019 20:00:00 -0400 b8e66f69-d0f1-4f92-90e7-3851148f966a I came across this article in my Facebook feed today, and I am highlighting it because I want you guys to notice the language that’s used of Chick-fil-A and these other apparently malevolent organizations (Fellowship of Christian Athletes, Salvation Army, and Paul Anderson Youth Home). This, of course, is the common nomenclature used by LGBTQ activists to describe individuals and organizations that hold to a historic Christian sexual ethic. Notice here, the words “anti-LGBTQ” and “discriminatory groups”—this language is intended to shape our thinking to the point where we see these Christian organizations as akin to Nazis or the KKK. This is no exaggeration, for as John Becker, a leading LGBTQ activist, stated in 2014,

_“Our culture doesn’t treat other forms of bigotry with ‘respect’ and ‘tolerance.’ To the contrary, prejudices like sexism, racism, and anti-Semitism are overwhelmingly regarded with revulsion and scorn – because society has rightfully decided that these toxic social evils deserve to be shamed and stigmatized, and that sexists, racists, and anti-Semites no longer deserve a seat at the table of civil discourse.” _

Catch that? If you hold to biblical sexual ethics you ought to be shamed and stigmatized by society and kicked out of public discourse—now, many have moved beyond this to say you should be prosecuted. Fellow believers, we MUST WAKE UP to these schemes and not allow these tactics to silence us or cause us to capitulate to their agenda. We stand—alongside of Chick-fil-A and these other Christian organizations –for those who have been demonized, unfairly maligned, and mistreated, including those who identify as LGBTQ. We stand for their dignity, their humanity, and for the belief that we are all sinners in need of God’s grace and power to live according to His design plan. We stand against anyone or any organization that truly discriminates against others on the basis of race, class, gender, sexual attractions, and/or struggles with gender dysphoria.

At the same time, we will not throw away the truth that we have stood on for some two thousand years for the sake of self-preservation. God designed sex as a good gift to be enjoyed within the boundaries of marriage between one (biological) male and one (biological) female. Any sexual activity outside of this falls short of His design, is destructive, and is sin—whether it’s homosexual, heterosexual, or anything else you can think of. This is not an “anti” anybody stance. It is out of love and the knowledge of what makes for sexual wholeness as communicated to us by the Designer and confirmed time and again by empirical research.

The organizations mentioned in this article are not discriminating in the sense that activists want us to believe. The same standard is applied to everyone in these organizations no matter what one’s sexual proclivities may be. So, please STOP using this kind of loaded language and fear tactics. We are done being bullied. WE ARE DONE.