Let’s follow the kids: 3 ways to enact real change

Let’s follow the kids: 3 ways to enact real change

I’m sitting on my couch, staring out the window as I watch the melting snow drip from the tree branches. It’s like the trees are crying, I think. They’re weeping right alongside all of America.

It’s only been four days—how has it only been four days? Four days since 17 children lost their lives in a school shooting. Another school shooting. There have been 18 this year, and it’s only February.

And we have refused to take action on gun reform, so now our children are doing it for us. They’re organizing marches and appearing on national news circuits, showing up and speaking out for what is right. They’re calling out politicians and raising money for victim’s families, refusing to bow to fear. We could learn a thing or two (or one million) from them.

They inherently know what we are trying to forget: it’s all about connection.

Violence happens when meaningful connection is severed, and the kids are banning together while the rest of us are distancing from one another even further.

We are not the real leaders of America. They are.

So the world can keep it’s theories about why gun reform won’t work—but I’ll be following the kids.

Here are 3 ways to stand with the kids and enact real change:

1. Listen to the kids.

Follow them on social media. Watch their interviews. Pay attention because they have important things to teach us.

Start here:

“My generation won’t stand for this” by Cameron Kasky

“We call BS” by Emma Gonzalez

2. Call your legislators.

Demand action. Let them know you will not stand for apathy any longer. We cannot afford to continue doing what we’ve always done while expecting different results.

Find your Senate representatives here.

Find your House representatives here.

3. #MarchForOurLives

On March 24, the kids and families of March For Our Lives will take to the streets of Washington DC to demand that their lives and safety become a priority and that we end this epidemic of mass school shootings. The collective voices of the March For Our Lives movement will be heard. Join us in DC or march in your own community.

Are you angry? Upset? Frustrated? Scared? Good.

Do something about it.

How I Discovered the Secret to a Fully Inclusive Church

How I Discovered the Secret to a Fully Inclusive Church

I read the tiny words on my phone screen and my breath caught in my throat—they were the words I had been waiting for. For years, I had hoped and prayed and wished for this, and now suddenly it was all happening at once: my family wanted to meet the woman I love.

In the LGBTQ community, we joke that “queer culture” is really just people whose families know nothing about them or their lives. As heartbreaking as it is to say, it is so true. Because when we cannot be honest about who we are, the people who love us cannot understand all we are.

But here she was—my grandmother—throwing the door wide open and inviting us in. So we booked plane tickets and packed our bags and showed up in my middle-of-nowhere, Ohio hometown. I was nervous and terrified it would be awkward, but it turned out to be anything but. There were hugs and kisses and excitement and good food and good conversation and seemingly never-ending visits from friends and family.

And it was during that visit that I discovered the secret to the full inclusivity in the Church that so many of us have been searching for…

Love.

(Yep, it’s really that simple!)

Love over legalism. The End.

Choosing love over the legalistic Law Jesus came to free us from completely negates the need for full inclusivity—because it is inherently fully inclusive of all people. All we need to do is simply choose love over anything else:

Love over racism.

Love over sexism.

Love over homophobia and biphobia and transphobia.

Love over everything else—every. single. time.

For this is the way of Jesus.

So this is how I’m choosing to live 2018: all my love, fully extended to every single person every single day.

Join me, won’t you?