A Brief Introduction

Endeavoring to define myself outside of a "job title." I'm a nomad of sorts who fell in love with technology, activism, and helping others. I run a web & media consulting firm, have a blog specifically for activists & non-profits, and travel often. I love talking about theology, politics, and social change. I love doing something about it even more. I also like to be a well-rounded and fully present person. That's why I write here. Connect with me on twitter

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

not that guy

I just read D's post over at (Not So) Straight from Seminary and somehow it was just what I needed to hear tonight. It has been a fruitful two days at Carnegie Mellon (more on that later, I promise) but somehow I feel a little off as I relax on the couch in my suite. D's post helped me think about that feeling and I left the following comment:

Thank you for sharing. I happened onto Soulforce's Equality Ride because after one more conversation with my parents I realized that they weren't changing because I wasn't asking them to change and in the ensuing fit of "I must simply be myself" I applied. And I had personal connections. And I was in. And all of the sudden I realized I wasn't an activist. That I let other people plan the rallies, and teach the talking points. But there I was in a hotel conference room in Austin, Texas. And before long I was in the middle of anti-gay colleges around the country. And I keep thinking to myself "I am just a regular guy from Maryland who got frustrated at his parents one day and applied on a whim and got accepted and decided to trust in God's plan." And now I live in New York City, and I'm out at work, and the past two days I've spent at Carnegie Mellon University as someone they brought in for Pride Month. And I see myself in the mirror and I don't understand. I am not that guy. I am not an activist. I am just a 22 year old boy from Maryland who wants to find love and be loved and exist and serve God and serve others. But here I am. And that is what I'm doing. And I don't know how because I've never been that guy, but I guess I should start realizing that maybe I am. It was an intense day for me... this was just what I needed to make falling asleep tonight a little easier.

I'm happy to know there's another one out there. And maybe in our own ways we can--sometimes willfully, sometimes begrudgingly--be that guy and that girl together.


D said...

Brian... how beautiful it is that your post, about finding a bit of encouragement in my post, could be exactly the encouragement I so deeply needed (hmmm.. the wonderful world of blogging). I look forward to those moments of sharing being "that girl" and "that guy"...

Drew said...

The irony that I continue to notice in the LBGT communities, is that within the communities the idea of love is so much more profoundly and openly communicated and defined than in the hetero communities.

Yet so many more Christians oppose the one group that is struggling with the idea of loving and being loved in the world openly and honestly. Doesn't God call us all to be so humble and open with one another? Admitting weakness by admitting our need to be loved by another is about as profound a step one can make towards the presence of God. For without that crucial step, that love cannot be received and God cannot be known.

This is one of many things that draws me into your (meaning all of your) struggle more and more.

Brian said...

Thanks for stopping by Drew. I think you are right, I have noticed some of the most profound expressions of love and faith amongst gay and transgender people. I know that my own faith has been challenged and enriched by the struggles I've experienced as a result of growing up gay.

I said in my application that "I think that GLBT people, more than others, need the love of God in a world that is all too often harsh towards them."

I also think that our culture send a message to all people-gay and straight alike-that drugs, partying, sex, and the like are what will fill you up. I am thankful for faith-based groups which challenge that message and it saddens me that gay and transgender people are often left out of those positive fellowships.

In the meantime, we can work to create such spaces for ourselves.

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