Monday, September 8, 2008

By any other name...

Matthew 18:21-35

Certainly, this text calls us to remember that we are all equal in our need for forgiveness. Beyond that, it also reminds us that the road for one is not the same road for all. God(dess) calls some to be pastors, some to be construction workers, some to be parents, some to be queer, some to be single.

For some people, bisexuality is a part of their journey towards identifying as gay or lesbian. For others it is their identity. For some, being in a space of gender non-conformity is a step on the path to a more gender conforming space. And for others gender non-conformity is their identity.

Sometimes we want others to feel the same relief that we felt when we were able to identify in a way that brought us understanding and fuller sense of self. Sometimes our desire to share what worked for us, provides a road block for others who are seeking that same privilege to self identify.

Whether you are someone who has felt the blessing of being named and claimed by God(dess), experienced the joy of claiming a new name or someone who has taken for granted the privilege of naming your self, please give other people the gift of naming themself, their identity and their gender pronouns.

Before I was born, my name was Ryan. In those days they determined the sex of a baby by listening to its heartbeat. And in my heart I was a boy. When I was born, the first words uttered were "opps," because when the doctor saw the skin between my legs he forgot what my heart had told him. For three days I was called, "baby girl Rohrer." Then my parents named me "Megan."

I don't believe what that doctor said. My birth was not an "opps" and either were any of my names. Now, I go by Ryan or Megan, acknowleding that my heart and the folds of my skin tell two different stories.

Our bible is full of stories about names. You can tell so much about someone by their name. There are many stories in the bible that also tell the story of how interacting with God(dess) changes people (and their names).

What is the story of your name? What are the names in the bible that speak to you?

Prayer: Psalm 103

Lectionary cycle B: Proper 19A/Ordinary 24A/Pentecost +18

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