Liz had the following to say in this thread, which has now been closed. That thread was closed, and I wanted to comment/question, so I'm reposting here =)
you know, reading these posts, I get the feeling that nothing is really said except "lets all be nice to each other and keep the peace". Which isn't what Jesus taught. At all. Jesus taught that standing up for the truth will make you enemies sometimes.
You are comparing different types of statements. Which is to say that "Let's be nice to each other and try to keep the peace" is not antithetical to "Standing up for the truth will make you enemies sometimes"
I think what you mean to say was that Jesus taught that "If one is put into a situation where one must make such a choice, then it's more important to 'stand up for the truth' than it is to 'be nice and try to keep the peace'." Am I getting that right?
I'm wondering if you could describe such a situation--where we must either be kind or be truthful. Cause I don't really buy it.
And it is interesting that the folks who don't want division over homosexuality have no problem creating it around other issues (the war for example or anything else they don't deem as "progressive")
Which folks are those? If by "division" you mean strife (and by implication violence), then I don't want division over homosexuality, nor over the war, etc. In fact I'd prefer kindness over violence on any of a range of issues, ideally.
I did a lot of googling after I read this thread last night. One of the sites critiquing the emerging church makes an enormously significant point. And that is that NO ONE has ever said that love and compassion for the homosexual go hand in hand with manipulating scripture to suddenly make their sin "OK". My point in bringing in other disorders was to perhaps draw a comparison to similar, if not identical situations. I know a lot of people who do some serious jail ministry. I am not talking about people who have smoked a little pot and are now cooling their heels. I am talking about people who have committed some really really horrible crimes against humanity. Yet, those who go into the prisons to love on these people and lead them to Christ are not saying...awww..gee...I love you so it's not a sin. It is PRECISELY because that love is Christian that it loves anyone and everyone NO MATTER WHAT THEIR SIN. But it doesn't dismiss the sin. When it comes to homosexuality though, there seems to be a very vocal contingent in the church that confuses loving with redefining sin to no longer be sin.
Why do you allow for the fact that some (most) people in prison are there for things that aren't really bad, like smoking some pot, while other people who are in prison are there for things that *are* really bad, like raping small children, but you *don't* allow for the fact that some (most) people who are homosexual are really rather nice people who haven't ever really done anything hurtful to other people beyond the normal things that all people do to each other, while other people who are homosexual have done really shockingly hurtful things to other people. I mean to say there are both homosexual and heterosexual really evil people, but most people don't fall into the category of really evil people, no matter what their sexual orientation.
As for DSM IV: I really do not put a whole lot of stock in the categories. Homosexuality has been removed due to extreme political pressure from gay rights groups.
While there is some truth to this, it is helpful to put it into context. The writing of every new version and every new text revision of DSM takes place by its very nature in an atmosphere of what might be called "extreme political pressure" over nearly *every* change that takes place, if for no other reason than the fact that a lot of money rides on which changes do or don't get made, and how they get made, and so forth. DSM 5 is currently being written, and it's the same deal--this group wants this in, and that group wants that out, but this other group doesn't, and so forth.
I brought up some examples from DSM such as sociopathy and BPD merely to point out that there are a number of conditions that leave secular shrinks shrugging their shoulders with no answers. The fact that these people don't respond well to traditional treatments and don't change very much doesn't cause their condition to be reclassified as "good". Homosexuality comes in for all sorts of special treatment both from secularists and "affirming" churches. The same people who would continue to love on a drug addict through relapse after relapse, all the while seeing getting clean as a goal; seem to have no difficulty treating homosexuality in a totally different manner. To love the struggler is to call their sin good when it comes to homosexuality.
Again I don't understand why you have to insist on such a large category when it comes to homosexuality, but not when it comes to other behaviors. Clearly if their homosexual behavior is causing them more problems than is desirable to them and those who love them, a person would want to stop such behavior. Just as with psychoactive drug use (including alcohol). But you seem to be insisting that *all* homosexuals fall into this category, whereas I imagine you would *not* insist that all psychoactive drug users fall into this category. There's obviously a line somewhere. For instance, I drink caffeine all the time--a psychoactive drug by anyone's description. It isn't causing me any big problems at all. I also drink alcohol socially. That also isn't causing me any big problems. While I don't smoke pot, I have friends who do, and it isn't causing them any big problems. However, there *are* those who have problems with alcohol, and pot, and even caffeine. But I think the best person to *know* whether a drug is causing them a problem is the user. Beyond that, for you or me to make blanket statements about *where* the line sits is silly. "All alcohol users are alcoholics" is silly on it's face, and "Anybody who drinks more than 5 standard shots at one sitting is an alcoholic" is tending to silliness.
But you seem to be doing this sort of thing for homosexuality: "Anybody who has homosexual intercourse has a huge problem which we shouldn't dismiss." or something like that. Am I mishearing you? Because that seems either silly or arrogant or both.
Many many people who secular shrinks would write off as "hopeless" have been cured by God. why should homosexuality be any different?
There it is again--the implication that all homosexuality is so problematic that many secular shrinks would write it off as "hopeless".
Part of the problem with ex gay ministries is they are so freaking formulaic. The people I know who have had real lasting change almost invariably did it on their own, seeing counselors, applying principles from other recovery programs to their issues and simply asking GOD for wisdom instead of trying yet another workbook that is the thinking of man rather than the wisdom of God.
I hear you, sort of. As a recovering person myself, however, I've found that lots of parts of "the wisdom of man" have been extremely helpful to me. "Formulaic" has it's advantages and it's drawbacks, as do most things. My experience is that large chunks of the church can be so anti-formulaic and anti thinking-of-man that they would deny the person in recovery access to stuff that is actually pretty helpful. But you're right in that the eclectic approach to recovery can be a great one--take what works for you from a variety of sources. Just getting plugged into a variety of sources/resources is a helpful step, as I'm sure you know.
As for what DSM classifies as disorders, while they were busy normalizing homosexuality, they also made "math impairment disability" an official diagnosis. Can you believe it? Sucking at math is now an official "disability". Millions of adults could probably retroactively get SOME kind of compensation under the Americans with disabilities act were they so inclined to do so.
I think you must be referring to "mathematics disorder". You seem to be being very dismissive about it. I wonder if your dismissiveness inducts up to all learning disorders (of which mathematics disorder is a subcategory)? Here's DSM on learning disorders in general:
Demoralization, low self-esteem, and deficits in social skills may be associated with Learning Disorders. The school drop-out rate for children or adolescents with Learning Disorders is reported at nearly 40% (or approximately 1.5 times the average). Adults with Learning Disorders may have significant difficulties in employment or social adjustmentAre you saying you think it's unhelpful in general to ... talk about learning disorders? Or that this language is not a useful language for talking about them--are you suggesting that "I, or you, suck at learning" would be a more useful langauge to talk about them?
I disagree. My 6 and 4 year old daughters attend a super amazing school called the EEU here in Seattle. It's a preschool and kindergarten, and half of the students are "typical", while the other half of the students are "atypical", which means that they are on the autism spectrum, or have some other physical or mental disability. The classes have about a 1 to 3 or 1 to 4 teacher to student ratio, and all the teachers are either graduates or graduate students of master's level and above education programs at the University of Washington. Which means, among other things, that these teachers are *steeped* in the language of which you are so dismissive. And the school is simply amazing. Many of the atypical students are able to go on to mainstream 1st grade and so forth, because of the amazing atmosphere and environment of the EEU which has helped them make super awesome progress in learning both academic skills and social skills. There are long queaus of parents waiting and wanting to get their kids into EEU--parents of both atypical and typical students, because it is such an amazing place. I am *super* thankful that our two got in, and among other things I think it has helped prepare them early on to be able to interact with atypical kids, and people, in a kind, ... normal way. I mean they're already way better at that than I am.