Thank God for you, brothers [and sisters] loved by the Lord.
2 Thessalonians 2.13
Today, as I thank God for His blessings, I'm reminded they aren't confined to when we’re on our knees or seated in pews. They keep coming, hour after hour, minute by minute, at surprising times, from surprising places, in surprising ways. Often what begins small and appears fairly routine blossoms into something so altogether extraordinary, powerful, and magnificent it could only come by the grace and goodness of God.
Straight-Friendly stands among the most astonishing gifts I’ve ever received, one of the most truly amazing of my life. It started as a tiny idea born of mounting awareness I should do whatever I could, no matter how small, to reach out to my GLBT and other forsaken brothers and sisters in Christ. Short-sightedness (actually, myopia) led me to envision cranking out somewhat glib, predictable pep talks encouraging random readers who stumbled on the blog to hold fast to their faith and answer religious rejection with unconditional love.
Then, one by one, you started showing up and everything changed. Given my naïve vision, I’m embarrassed to admit how dumbfounded—and thrilled—I was by your enthusiastic embrace. I never expected the wealth of knowledge, friendship, and inspiration you generously bless me with day after day. Nor could I have possibly imagined the beautiful spectrum of believers God would send—gay, straight, women, men, younger, older, Catholic, Protestant, married, single, and between, from big cities and rural towns, on every continent… the list goes on and on.
Oh, the riches you’ve brought to me and my home! You’ve touched my heart and life on so many levels. You’ve opened my mind, made me smile, brought tears to my eyes, and nurtured my faith in ways you most likely never realized. I am eternally grateful to all of you and if I knew all your names, I’d mention you individually. Seen or unseen, however, known or unknown makes no difference in the end. We are all the same, reflections of God’s love and goodness, beneficiaries of His grace, and rightful heirs to His promise of reconciliation.
Most important, I thank God for every one of you, my brothers and sisters. While I will never “meet” everyone here at Straight-Friendly, He knows who and where you are, and will return the blessings you’ve so freely given here.
Our God is an awesome God. In the very short time I’ve been at this, not a day has passed without at least one of you proving that. I pray He rewards every one of you with untold joy, peace, and love for your kindness and generosity to me—and one another. I have every confidence He will.