(Dear devoted reader, this is one you might want to listen to instead… trust me on this!)

Being gay is not a sin.

I’ve touched on this quite a bit in the past. It’s important enough of an issue that we really need to work through it — especially those of us who are Christian. Words are power. They have meaning. Images have power as well. For many of us, when we hear the word “gay,” the instant image in some of our minds is “gay sex.”

That, then, is really what it’s all about. Sex. What people do with their or someone else’s genitals. It’s icky, yucky, revolting, and stirs chills down the spines of more than a few people. After all, why would any man look at another man’s hairy ass and actually desire it?

We should ask women that same question. What makes a woman desire a man? What makes a man desire a woman? Is there something more than the sexual attraction? Or is it, as we appear to think, all about the sex. The bump and grind. The magic between the sheets. That whole lotta shakin’ goin’ on!

Gay sex. It is the ultimate example of what makes men shiver and women turn up their nose. What man would allow themselves to be penetrated, and why would any man turn away the wiles of a beautiful woman for another guy? It’s sex. It’s baffling. It’s puzzling. It’s odd. Frankly, it’s queer.

And it has absolutely, not one single little tee-niny bit to do with how a person identifies themselves if they’re gay. Just in case you’re confused, I’ll speak plainly: Gay people are not people who have gay sex.

Gay people are not identified by the kind of sex people have. That’s not what makes us tick. And frankly, we’re adults. Why the hell is anyone worried about the kind of sex that adults have with each other? That’s sort of not anyone’s business.

And believe me. You don’t want to envision a flabby, chubby, forty-something, before-picture kind of guy like me doing anything between the sheets. Hell, I don’t want to imagine it. It’s not enticing. Trust me.

Gay sex. It’s sometimes the ultimate barrier to whether or not someone will be our friend. Are you trying to imagine what happens when I want to get busy? Do yourself a favor.

Don’t.

You’ll just hurt yourself. Besides, it’s not what drives me. It’s not what makes me who I am. Oh, don’t get me wrong. I enjoy it. Hell yeah, I do. But I do not live every single moment for that next conquest or that next score. My life isn’t that damned boring.

But let’s get right to the point, shall we? Do we really want to allow a penis or a vagina to dominate the conversation about sexual orientation? Oh, yes, I know. There are other body parts involved, depending on the situation. But there’s usually a penis or a vagina somewhere in the mix.

I’m gay. And sometimes I might even have gay sex. But if and when I do, I sure as hell am not going to ask you if you like the idea or not. It’s my life. It’s my bed. And it’s not something you particularly need to worry yourself over. So do yourself a favor… and please, stop trying to picture me doing the magical dance of love. In my shape, it’s more like the magical squish of bliss.

Seriously. It’s not about the sex. Is a straight person straight because they have sex with the opposite sex? Of course not.

Does a teenage boy identify himself as straight because of the sex that he has? Of course not. The chances that he’s actually HAVING sex is pretty low. Yeah, he likes to brag. But the only thing he’s actually conquering these days is a bottle of hand lotion and maybe a box of kleenex.

He’s straight. He’s a guy. He likes girls. He really likes girls. But he’s not actually having sex. Sorry, dude. I just busted you out. You’re still a virgin. And yeah, you’re hopelessly straight.

Sexual orientation is a simple thing — it’s simply a matter of who we’re attracted to. For most of us, we’re attracted to people of the opposite sex. Kind of a good thing, too. Helps with the whole being fruitful and multiply thing. For a small percentage of us, we’re into musical theatre, see. Others are more into flannel shirts and power tools. Yeah, they’re stereotypes, but the point is valid.

Sex, sex, sex. Can we move beyond that, already? We are who we are. I’m not going to introduce myself as someone who has gay sex. Hell, I’m not even going to introduce myself as a gay man. I’m David who is gay and I’m going to have hot, sweaty sex with a man. How are you?

Maybe I should. Might be able to cut through some of the crap a little faster that way.

I’m not gay because I have gay sex. Let’s stop with the charade, and stop with the nonsense that we must focus on what we think goes on between the sheets, and focus on the person standing before us.

When we think of someone only by the sex we think they they have, we reduce them to a simple act. It’s degrading, and completely dehumanizing. We don’t see the person. We see the sex that they must be having. They’re reduced to an act. A thing. That has sex.

Can we — maybe, possibly — find a way to look at a person who’s gay without thinking about the sex we desperately want to think they have? It’s a simple thing. A gay person isn’t a person who has gay sex. Sure, we might like to have gay sex from time to time, but that’s really none of your damned business.

What IS your business is how you treat your fellow human being. Let’s start by thinking of them AS a human being.

Life is life. Most people are straight. Some aren’t. It’s not you. It’s not them. It just IS.

You’re not gay. You don’t understand it. Just like I’ll never understand why everyone doesn’t fawn over animé classics like Voltron or Space Battleship Yamato. They’re awesome. Some people don’t have a clue about Star Trek. They think a Klingon is some guy with a bad attitude and big, cracked pecan on their head. Me, I could regale you for hours with stories of why Klingons are awesome.

There’s absolutely no sin, no fault, and no shame in being gay. It’s part of who we are. Some dudes dig dudes, and some chicks like chicks. That’s life. If you don’t, then don’t try to figure it out.

And let the sex tend to itself.

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