I know, that’s a weird headline for a blog post. No, I’m not losing my house. No, I’m not being evicted. I’m not homeless (anymore) and don’t have any reason to think I will be in the foreseeable future.
Because I’m white. And middle class. And straight. And Christian. And American. And the list goes on…
Months ago, my teenaged daughter texted me from school (that’s pretty typical, actually) in a panic. A good friend had had enough, and was struggling with the fact that he’d just realized a few weeks before that he was gay. She was urging him to tell his parents, if only so that he didn’t have to hide who he was and live a lie.
She was texting me the play-by-play as she tried to convince him that being honest and true to himself was the best way. I followed up with supportive texts, confirming what she was telling him. As a parent, I would be devastated to learn that my child harbored a secret that she thought she couldn’t tell me.
As he contemplated texting his mom to tell her–please, let that sink in…he was afraid to even text her–he looked at her at one point and said, “I could be homeless at 3pm today.”
Choke on that for a minute. Think about your child really believing that you would kick him out, that you would tell a fifteen-year-old who isn’t even old enough to drive a car that you don’t want him to step foot in your house again. Your own flesh and blood, sent away from your presence.
Would God do that to you? Is there ANYTHING you could do that Our Father would not forgive? That he would cast you out and say, “Don’t show your face again?” Anything that would keep him from gathering you in his arms and sending his angels to lift you up?
No. And you’re a putrid excuse for a human being if you think that’s even possible.
I texted my daughter immediately: “He is NOT homeless! If they don’t want him, he is to come to our house and stay with us! But he is NOT left out in the cold!”
Some of us felt the ground quake beneath us this week, realizing that hatred won out over love and over Jesus Christ. Don’t let that be the end of the story. Show your love everywhere you go, be the force for change and for good, and for God’s sake, open your hearts and your homes to those who are terrified right now. Shower the world with the love that Christ gave us. The Holy Spirit is in us, and it’s not there without reason.