There’s a new book out, Above All Things, which tells the story of the journey of one evangelical Christian mother and her lesbian daughter. The mom who wrote the book is Shari Johnson from Odessa, TX.
Shari’s story is very similar to my own story. We both were devoted to our conservative, Christian, evangelical faith communities and believed what we had been taught about same sex relationships. When our kids came out to us our world was turned upside down. We both have gone from condemning our children for being gay/lesbian to grudgingly accepting them to being active, passionate advocates of our children while still remaining faithful to being a follower of Jesus Christ. Both of us realize that our stories could have very easily ended in tragedy, as so many have, and we want to encourage and support lgbt people, their friends and families in a way that helps them create and maintain healthy, loving relationships with one another. We both want to spread the message that being a follower of Jesus Christ should lead Christian parents to fully and joyfully embrace their lgbt children rather than reject them.
Here’s an excerpt from the Washington Post story written by Shari that I linked to above:
When President Obama announced his support of same-sex marriage, I was thrilled. But I also was filled with a sense of dread about the maelstrom that was sure to follow. I knew it was coming because there was a time when I would have been a part of it.
This Friday (June 15), I’ll be at the White House for a reception to mark gay pride month. It’s an event I never thought I would be attending.
The night my 37-year-old daughter Cholene called and told me she is gay, I felt as though the air had been sucked out of the room. I was beyond devastated. I had been an evangelical Christian for more than 30 years and thought that this was the worst thing that could happen — to a parent, to a Christian, to me.
Cholene had given us many reasons to be proud of her — she was a graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy, the second woman to fly the U-2 spy plane and then a captain for a commercial airline. In my experience, “gay pride” was not on the acceptable list of parental bragging rights.
Stories like Shari’s are happening everyday and stories like Shari’s are changing hearts everyday. I can’t help but believe that the spirit of God is moving in a radical way. I hope you will buy her book, read it and share it.