Hello is More Than an Adele Song

helloAs a child, I watched a lot of television. I mainly consumed a regular fare of sitcoms—shows like Full House and Growing Pains. At the time, I probably would have said I liked them because they are funny. Now, I recognize I was drawn to them because they were consistent. Not just consistent in the time they ran each week, but regular in format and character. After just a few episodes, I knew what to expect. I took comfort in their consistency because I couldn’t make sense of the world around me or within me.

At the age of ten, I discovered a growing physical attraction to my male classmates. I didn’t use the word gay or homosexual then because I didn’t know what those words meant. Yet, somehow I knew what I was feeling wasn’t “normal” or “right”. I tried to ignore it and mostly succeeded by immersing myself in my studies and even more television.

The weird thing about television is the more you watch the more you start to believe the characters you see there are your friends. They accept you, share their stories, and don’t ask about things that confuse you (like your sexuality). I had a lot of “friends” but grew increasingly disconnected from others and myself.

But this sort of thing can’t go on forever. We grow up. I headed out into the world and quickly discovered I had no idea how to connect with other people. I longed for connection, but couldn’t make lasting, meaningful relationships with the consistency I saw on television.

Somewhere in my teen years I also became a Christian. I suppose as a way to try to find some connection. I did find some in my church youth group and then later at the Christian college I attended. But it was generally a loose sort of connection because I didn’t understand then that stronger ties come when we risk sharing ourselves.

So, here I am attempting to share myself with you, risking talking about my sexuality and my faith—sharing stories (even incomplete stories) that aren’t wrapped up in 30 minutes. But blogs aren’t fertile ground for stories. Like television, they’re one-sided. You’re reading this, but what chance do I have to get to know you?

Then I was reminded that blogs have an added feature when compared to television—that little comment area you see below. That opened up my imagination. Of course, I wish we could rename that area “connection” because I don’t want your comments. Comments are easy; they are drive by shootings. Building good connections takes work and vulnerability.Comments are easy; they are drive by shootings. Building good connections takes work and vulnerability.

Thus, I’m sharing stories here on the condition that you feel welcome to share yours. Through the church we are one body and I’d like to know how it’s going in your neck of the woods. We’re going to be connected for eternity after all, so let’s get started knowing each other now. Hello . . .

This entry was posted in Andy Saur, LGBT Perspectives, Reflections and tagged by Andy Saur. Bookmark the permalink.

About Andy Saur

Andy loves building interpersonal connections and has a passion for story. His particular interest is how story encountered through the arts helps grow understanding and compassion. Andy currently serves as the Executive Assistant at The Colossian Forum, a nonprofit organization based in Grand Rapids, MI that exists to help Christians engage divisive issues as opportunities for discipleship and witness.

4 thoughts on “Hello is More Than an Adele Song

  1. I like that statement,” Building good connections takes work and vulnerability.” And I agree, but sometimes it’s just so hard. A lot of us who come here have been so wounded that we shy away, (or stand in the corner growling…..) and have a hard time connecting. But you are right. My prayer is that the readers of this will get the message and be emboldened and that they will find new and safe relationships. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Kim, I hear you. When we’re nursing wounds the natural response does seem to be shying away or, alternately, growling (an image I love, by-the-by). The challenge is to risk even when we know risking could result in more pain. Thankfully, it could also result in the love, acceptance, and joy that so often eludes us.

    That said, as you’ll find out, I’m not a risk-taker. Moreover, I generally fail more than succeed in being vulnerable (preferring to shy away, as you say). Yet, when I do risk, I’m often surprised to discover a hint of the Holy Spirit in the air and a growing light in my very dark chest. Not always, mind you, but enough to keep me trying. I hope you’ll try with me.

    And I hope you’ll believe with me that true beauty is not a community of perfect people, but a gathering of broken people who fit perfectly together. And by “perfectly together” I don’t mean without conflict and hurt, but with a commitment to offer and receive forgiveness, and with a deep and abiding affection for one another.

    Much grace on you Kim and me and on all who try to open themselves.

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