Sunday, February 11, 2018
To yourself be true
For most of my life, church was somewhere I was supposed to be good.
I knew I wasn't good, but everyone told me I was a man, and I knew was wrong to want to be a woman.
Nobody told me that. Nobody needed to. I just knew.
And also, like everyone, I knew that from the church's point of view, I wasn't good anyway. I was a sinner. We were all told that. All of us sinners.
So I had to pretend. As everyone did.
So there were at least two layers of pretence in there, and a whole load of profound confusion because the desire to live a spiritual life, or rather to live my life in a way that was true to its spiritual dimension, was not a pretence at all. That was real.
That was why it was moving to go along this afternoon to Our Tribe, the LGBTIQ bit of my church [http://augustine.org.uk/index.php], which was relaunching itself after a time of reflection.
The most moving part of the service was the time when four people came up in turn to describe their process of coming out: a gay man, a lesbian woman, a bi woman, and a trans woman.
They weren't telling their stories of how they discovered Jesus, or anything like that. They were talking about the process of coming to be true to themselves.
And it strikes me that behind this is a profound truth about the spiritual life. That it's not about pretending to be good, or even trying to be good.
It's about finding one's true self.
And that's where the journey begins.
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