SO I guess it’s appropriate to start at the beginning. Dawn brought masturbation and then a rush to get to church in time, beat tram by 20 seconds, and then church was good. I stayed and chatted. Great people. Then (using ‘then’ is an elementary level way to recount an experience; thank you English teacher training), then I caught the train to the middle suburbs and bought fried salt and chilli chicken pieces (shout out to seekingwholeness) from this Asian place and caught a tram back to the city where I hopped on a different tram to the bohemian inner suburb (the preppy hipsters live in my suburb; the bohemian ones live here). I should add that the weather was glorious. Sun shining, cool breeze; the kind of early fall day that makes people lie on the grass and soak it up. Anyway, I headed to a bakery and chose a scrumptious lemon tart and perused the Sunday paper and watched people. On the radio Nova 100 was playing and a catchy love dance song began: “I will give to you the love you seek and more, so what are you waiting for?” It got to me. I walked to the train station and travelled to the big football stadium, and people watched for an hour. I meandered along the river back to the city and by about this time anyone who wasn’t alone was annoying me.
That wasn’t really the beginning. In the beginning I decided I needed a day off study/washing/ironing etc. I was feeling a bit rundown late last week and was going to make Sunday my Sabbath. Matt Carter encouraged me too: “God says, ‘Israelites you remember that day that was like that great victory for you. It was like the biggest day of your lives. You were a slave in Egypt, but I showed up on the scene and parted the Red Sea and sent you through there and killed all your enemies. Kind of a victorious day. I want you to remember I did it. When you were hopeless. When you thought I would never come. I stepped in. When you had to wait I was faithful.’ God says ‘remember that’… The day of rest is not only a blessing to you physically and spiritually, but it’s a day where you trust God. Trust God. So I remember the victory in my life comes through Him.” I love it. Basically his point is that when we are resting from our work, we are resting from trusting in our own abilities to achieve what we want and are forced to trust God. His preaching goes really well with the love song I shouldn’t be listening to.
All this is to say, I’m feeling it today. I’m feeling the glory of a beautiful day and trains that zoom just right and exquisitely made lemon tarts, and the ache of doing that alone.
I don’t think I mean this in a ‘woe is me; what a victim I am’ way. Just wouldn’t an awesome day be more awesome with a special someone. The love song speaks to this too: “watching life go by no one who to share”.
Yesterday something cool happened. I had prayed to meet another Christian in my course at uni and after my Saturday media studies class I did. It’s important when people ask me what I’m doing for the weekend that I out myself as going to church, so they can reciprocate.
Today at uni we had a lecture on the results of a survey that was done of same sex attracted youth aged between 14-21 in my state. In a few ways it took me back to that time in my life and things like friends being harsh towards gay people in their speaking at school, feeling picked on by some people and called a girl and all that sort of thing. In a way that was so long ago now, like seven to 12 years ago, and it didn’t hurt to be reminded of it. But there was an awareness that things could have and, probably, should have been different. I went to a Christian school and they never mentioned stuff like same sex attraction or held anti-homophobia classes. Sometimes I think some Christians think a little bit of homophobia is even helpful sometimes.
A lot of the examples they had from the survey (http://www.glhv.org.au/files/wti3_web_sml.pdf) were heartbreaking. Teenagers being abused, verbally and physically, and finding themselves and becoming okay with where they were at. It’s hard for me to think about, because on the one hand, being able to emphasise to some degree with their situations, I want schools and teachers and governments to do whatever they can to ensure the teenage years for SSA people are as easy as possible, but they always bring all their ideological baggage of being overly accepting with them. Then as a Christian I don’t really feel that sorry when the church gets bashed on this issue. They have done a shocking job about it. Lots of people don’t understand the issue or want to.
But then how does the church do better? How can it seem compassionate to the 450 student teachers in that lecture hall who are predisposed to be against its position? Should the church be worrying about what they think anyway?
I don’t want the church to drop its standards on homosexuality and ignore God’s truth. Lack of truth in churches annoys me as much as the other side. I guess the only thing they can do is to be broken hearted truth tellers. People who emphasise with the 15-year-old gay kid, but with time, tears and hugs call them to a better way. But then God’s truth on this issue is so anathema to today’s 20-somethings that even with all the love in the world I’m thinking they are still going to be offended.
I’ve had a messy few weeks with masturbation most days and then culminating in porn, my first extended session in a couple of months, on the weekend. I’m feeling worn out from uni three days a week and starting at a school two days a week and coming home every night to study. Even going to church on the weekend wears me out, because there are all these people I don’t know and nothing tires me out more than socialising with people I don’t know.
Socially uni is going fine. Sure, I’d like it to be going great. But for who I am and what uni is; it’s fine. Even when I’m sitting next to people I’m acquaintances with I get dissatisfied. I think to myself why can’t I be sitting next to that person on the other side of the room I sit next to in one of my tutorials? Or I pick out a moderately good looking guy in one of my classes who doesn’t seem to sit next to many people and I decide we should be great friends. Then I’m dissatisfied with the actual people I am sitting with or talking with. It’s stupid.