Friday, July 14, 2006

Yes, Sometimes I Am

"Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemnded. Forgive, and you will be forgiven "

"You are nothing but a pharisaical religious b_____."

Jennifer (not her real name) angrily criticized me in the front of a seminar group of about 100 people. Understandably I was taken aback but answered simply by saying, "Yes, sumtimes I am. "

Had I become defensive and sought to justify myself, I'm sure I would have built a wall between myself and Jennifer and most likely there nvr would have been any further meaningful communication between us.

Actually this happened in a seminar, I was leading following a session discussing the subject of homosexuality. I learnt later that Jennifer was gay, so her hostility towards me was understandable.

A few weeks later, for those who wanted to deal with personal issues, we had a "live in debth" week-long recovery workshop. What amazed me was that Jennifer attended even though she disagreed with me vigorously regarding homosexuality. At the beginning of the week she kept me at arm's distance.

However, I assured her that even though I disagreed with her lifestyle, we loved and accepted her.

There was about 30 of us at the retreat and not one person judged or criticized Jennifer in any way all week. We all loved and accepted her. This was somewhat overpowering for her as she was so used to being condemned, especially by Christians. what shocked me even more was that at the end of the week, she came to me, hugged me warmly and said, "Perhaps you are right after all."