Coming out is not always easy…
“And he said to them, ‘Is a lamp bought that is placed under a basket, or under a bed? Should it not be placed on a lamp stand? For there is not anything which is hidden that will not be revealed, and not anything existing in secret that won’t be revealed. If anyone has ears to hear, let them hear.’ And then Jesus said to the disciples, ‘Watch what you hear. With that measure that you measure. It will be measured to you and it is increased to you, those who hear.’ For to those who have, it shall be given. And for those who have not, also it shall be taken from them.'” Mark 4:21-25 [Aramaic English New Testament – modified for inclusive language]
Coming out is not always easy. It can happen in many ways and at any time. Still in places today, the threat of being “outed” is used to keep our “lamps” hidden away, held back from the darkness that so needs the light. The closet and the darkness continue to do untold damage. “Measuring one’s life” by the limited space in which our spirit breathes freely, constrains the light – never a good thing to do. Living in a complex of secrets riddled with fear obscures not only what we perceive but also what we hear; constraining the kindom of God that is within and what it calls us to do…in all the many ways we are called.
Attempting to hold back God never ends well. Whereas the opposite frees us to embrace more of “the measure” that is given us to participate in our world, loved by God and loving others in that measure and steadily growing free of fear. Living into our light dispels the darkness of oppression, revealing all – whether the marginalization of gender differences, the bigotry that thrives on fear, or any other form of domination.
Some might say we have a choice about coming out. In small ways, that is true. In the larger sense of who we are created to be and the lamp we have to shine so that others may see and hear and shine their lamp in the company of others who know the way… we have only the responsibility to be the light God created us to be.
To do otherwise is to be silenced and complicit in the darkness.
Never a good thing…
~ Ray Bagnuolo, May 9, 2015