Letters To The Editor

Readers are an integral part of Whosoever. We appreciate hearing from our readers, whether they have praise or hot coals to heap on our heads. With the new year, we're beginning this new feature of a reader forum. Here's some of the things our readers are saying.

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Editor:

I have been looking for information to help my homosexual friend realize that he doesn't have to denounce religion to accept his sexuality. He is a preacher's kid from the Bible belt - always been very active in the church and happy to be, really. He has been severely depressed, however, over his sexuality and what he thinks he knows to be true about Christianity. You see some people just give up on religion and accept who they are, but he has chosen religion and what he has known all of his life. He has had a real struggle reconciling this whole issue and I am just flooding him with information including your fabulous newsletter. Thank you for publishing this. I am sure you are helping a lot of people.

Many, many thanks,

Tracy


Editor:

I cannot begin to tell you how your ministry has touched and changed my life! I am 48 years old had struggled for 20+ years with who I am. In the past 3 years I have come to acceptance and must say that Whosoever played a big role in that acceptance. Married to a minister for 18 years the church and faith were such a huge part of my life and absolutely one of the happiest parts, since I left 9 years ago I have not had a solid church home most of that time. Whosoever has been a church for me and many a day my worship service.

This issue on grace is a blessing and an answer to pray. Although I have thought this way for awhile now, one can never hear it too often and it is always comforting and reinforcing. How I pray for a world where everyone can see this image of God and let him out of their boxes!

Well I could go on forever, the topics you choose are ones that impassion me. Thank you again for your message of grace and peace. Take care and God bless you in all that you do!

Sincerly,

Kathy


Mark writes:

You can't just pick and choose the verses you want to believe. BELIEVE IT ALL OR NOT AT ALL!!!

Editor Candace Chellew responds:

Okay .. do you believe we should still have Levirite marriages? They're in the Bible ... not condemned but condoned. So, if you believe all of the Bible then you should be out there lobbying for the return of such marriages where women are nothing but chattel .. owned by a man. When that man dies, his brother must then marry the woman. Oh, and of course such marriages are polygamous. You believe the Bible .. you don't pick and choose, right? Then you obviously support this type of marriage.

Hmm .. how about believing that the earth is flat? The Bible states the earth has four corners. So, since you believe everything in the Bible, and don't pick and choose the verses you want to believe, then the earth must be flat.

The Bible condones slavery ... speaks in favor of it on many occasions. Of course, I know you are out there working toward the reinstitution of slavery, since it's supported by the Bible .. and you, certainly, believe all of the Bible and don't pick and choose which verses to believe in.

The Bible says an unruly child must be put to death ... are you out lobbying for laws to change? Are you out supporting the death penalty for unruly children? It's in the Bible .. you must believe it .. you obviously don't pick and choose from among the verses.

Do you wear mixed fiber clothing? Shave? Cut your hair? It's all forbidden by the Bible .. but of course YOU don't pick and choose from the Bible .. YOU believe in everything the Bible says.

We ALL pick and choose from the Bible, my friend. NOT ONE of us believes EVERYTHING nor practices EVERYTHING the Bible says.

Hear the truth: Jesus came to free us from the law. In Christ there are no distinctions be they Jew or Gentile or gay or straight. Jesus says "whosoever" believes." There are no "ifs, ands, or buts."

The Bible also said how Jesus healed people, so why don't you believe that He can heal you.

Jesus has healed me of many things. Homosexuality is nothing one needs to be healed from. It is neither a sickness, nor a sin.

This isn't hate mail. If I hated you I wouldn't bother telling you the truth. I Love You.

I love you, too. You are a brother in Christ.

Blessings,

Candace


Diane writes:

Jesus suffers with struggling homosexuals and wants us to reach out to them and love them back to His plan for them. That is my view point.

Editor Candace Chellew responds:

Who's struggling? I'm not struggling with my homosexuality ... but apparently you are! I'm sure Jesus will help you through it! I know God's plan for my life, and it's to spread Jesus' good news of UNCONDITIONAL love to all of God's children, be they gay, straight, white, black or whatever other earthly distinction one may want to draw.

I am a sinner also. My sins are different than yours, but sin is sin! I've discovered that people who make tough decisions about sin in their lives, struggle with them, tempted to abandon them, persevere, find one day that the desires of their heart are starting to shift. This is how God uses struggle to build character and draw us closer to Himself. This dramatic change is available to anyone who wants it. When we pursue God, we find to our amazement that we become more interested in what He wants than in what we think we need.

Oh believe me, Diane .. I am a changed person because of Christ! [Read over our issue Becoming a New Creation in Christ or just my article of the same title.] I struggled for years with God over my sexuality and asked to be made straight. Want to know God's answer? It was a resounding "NO!" Instead, God has made me an instrument to spread God's good news of love to all! That's incredibly dramatic and I am awed every single day by God's grace and power in my life!

I believe that when you pursue the God of the Bible, one day you'll discover that homosexual sex is not something He intended or desires for any of us. He warned us about it in His word, and wants to help anyone who is willing to move beyond it.

Some homosexual ACTS are condemned by the Bible ... on that we agree. However, the Bible is mum on loving, committed same sex relations. [However, Jesus didn't even see fit to condemn homosexual acts in his ministry!] Instead, acts that are idolatrous and disrespectful of another person are condemned. I agree that prostitution ... one night stands ... and any other thoughtless and selfish sexual act, be it hetero or homo, is wrong! I'm not giving carte blanche to gay people to just go out and have sex. NO! The magazine encourages nothing but monogamy, commitment, love and honor for another person ... who happens to be of the same sex. I see NO condemnation in the Bible of that.

We obviously disagree ... and you won't change my mind and I most likely won't change yours. Again, we must agree to disagree ... and rely on God's grace as we each seek the paths we believe God has set out before us ... even if those paths seem contradictory! We see through a mirror dimly, but one day we'll see God face to face. I'm prepared to do my best for my maker and present myself as I am on the day of judgment. If I'm wrong ... the power of Grace is what will save me!

We all struggle with sin, I pray you'll recognize the truth in His Holy Bible, truth that leads to hope. I pray that you'll find courage to live the life God has designed for you.

Your prayers are already answered, Diane! God has already given me truth, hope beyond my wildest dreams, and the courage to live the life God designed for me. You think putting out this magazine and getting hateful mail [I'm not saying yours is hateful, you've been very respectful] damning me to hell everyday ... and even threatening my life on occasion, doesn't take courage?? Trust me ... it does. It's not easy to face condemnation every day of my life ... but I do ... just like my savior, Jesus Christ did when he spoke his truth.

"we too believe ... and so we speak" [2 Corinthians 4:13] .... and that, my friend ... is God's design for my life ... to speak my beliefs, my truths from God, in love.

Blessings,

Candace


Editor:

I just wanted to thank you for having something like this on the internet. I just started reading some of your information tonight, and just recently came out to my extremely Christian family, they are still having a very difficult time, but reading some of your work has given me hope and has given my worries to God. Thank you, you don't realize what an impact something like this can have. Thank you again.

May God Bless You,

Emily


Editor:

First of all, thank you. Thanks for the wonderful publication, and for your ministry. I know it's hard to be a lightning rod for fear and prejudice. Courage, Sister. :-) You're doing good stuff, and you've helped me in several ways.

When I was first coming out (2 1/2 years ago), "Whosoever" was a Godsend to me. It calmed and comforted me when I was upset, and got me THINKING. It still gets me thinking, in new directions all the time. I learn from you and the other ministers here, not just the content, but also how to respond to the hysterics out there who honestly believe that warning us of our imminent damnation is a loving act.

Anyway, blessings to you. Keep up the good work!

Shalom,

Jodi


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