George Fox’s Marriage Proposal

The Postmodern Quaker

Dear friends,

Something was upon me to write to you
regarding those Friends who marry,
that instead of providing great dinners on such occasions,
it would be good if they were put in mind
to give something to the poor,
the widows and fatherless and such –
to make them a feast, or at least to refresh them.

And this, I feel, would be a very good savor:
to feast the poor who cannot feast you in return.
It would be a good practice and example,
and a means of keeping the mind to the Lord
in remembering the poor,
for “they that give to the poor, lend to the Lord,
and the Lord will repay them.”

And I do really believe that,
whatever you give cheerfully,
less or more according to your ability,
you will not have the less at the year’s end,
for “the Lord loves a cheerful giver.”

I know this was done…

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Why I Write as a “Gay” Dad

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I did not intend to write about this topic. A friend of mine, Henry Amador, blogger and founder of Dadsquared, addressed it in a piece called “The Battle Cry of the Gay Dad” for The Next Family. He captured the essence of the extra effort those of us who are gay dads have gone through to become fathers. He said, in part:

Only now we too are grown. We finally fit into our skins. We have passed your foolish tests and questions with flying colors. If we made it and we are here and we have children that call us dads then we have leapt over hurdles never imagined. We, like all other groups that have suffered at the hands of another, have risen above it. We have taken ownership of who and what we are. We have come to identify with what we are. We have come…

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Running your race.

…let us run with endurance the race set before us……Hebrews 12:1
I’ve been doing some thinking

Even though I really like being Quaker and what the Quaker movement has to offer, in the end it is not as spiritually uplifting as it needs to be for me, and it does not give me the opportunity to fully use the talents God has blessed me with. I’ve been willing to ignore the talents God has given me for the sake of finding a place to sit in a movement that I find fascinating and potentially transformative. But it’s not enough to be part of a group that has potential When God gives you talents, I believe that he expects you to USE those talents in his service and to do the work that he would have you do in the world. And to use those talents, you have to be a part of a movement that VALUES those talents.

A few days ago, an AME preacher came up to me and preached at me as is his custom. He’s a coworker of mine at my job, and I find him to be a bit brash at times and overly critical. He’s also against full equality for LGBT people or the recognition of LGBT relationships, like many others in my workplace, so I usually ignore him when the spirit “gives him a message”. But he ended his preaching that day with a special blessing on my head. After lamenting the “sinful and spiritually ignorant” and “hell-bound” ways of some employees at our job who were of my age group, he said that God had told him to tell me that God wanted to take me “to another level”, that God’s hand was on my life and that I should read Hebrews chap. 12. Whenever somebody says they heard something from God I take it seriously regardless of who they are. So I went home and read the words I quoted above. And as I read them, I came to the realization that I have to run the race that is set before me to follow the calling that God has made on my life and I have not been doing that lately.

As I reflect upon my current spiritual orientation , I realize that is what I’ve been focused almost solely on finding a place where I don’t ever have to expose myself to the challenges that come with the calling on my life as I’ve experienced it so far. But it’s not enough to build a spiritual and emotional cocoon for ourselves, is it? God has ministry for each of us to do as She seeks to bring the Shalom of Her Kingdom into being in our world. And I believe he wishes for us to live FULLY, and to be in fellowship with people with whom we can explore ALL of our spiritual and creative gifts and knowledge.

So time to get back on “track”.