Amy swam in a pool of tears as the seminar continued. Others were oblivious to her divine epiphany. She realized the Lord had been drawing her near to strengthen her for this revelation—to show her the source of so much sexual struggle hidden for years beneath layers of protective mud.
“After that, I realized God knows more about me than I know about myself,” Amy recalls, “and he wants to bring healing to these wounds, so I fully gave him my heart and body—everything. As I continued to seek intimacy with him, the lesbian struggles fell away. I’m not saying that’s how God works with everyone, but it’s how he’s healing me. The more I focus on God’s intimate love for me and try to see his Masterpiece emerge, the less I want anything to get in the way of his work in me.”
Seven years later, Amy leads our ministry to help people find healing and wholeness from all kinds of sexual and relational struggles. She’s helping others become God’s restored Masterpiece.
Jesus Is Not Shocked by Lesbians in Church or Anything Else
Do you realize that Jesus is not shocked by the shocking things people do, whether we’re talking about lesbians in church holding hands or anything else? Jesus knew Zacchaeus had robbed people blind and profited off much unethical behavior, yet Jesus was not shocked. He did not offer Zach correction, but relationship. “Come down, Zacchaeus. I’m staying at your house tonight” (see Luke 19:5). That shocked everyone! Yet relationship changed Zacchaeus.
Jesus knew that the Samaritan woman at the well had been married and divorced five times. He knew about her current “hookup” and how sexually entangled she was with the guy she was living with (John 4). Jesus was not repulsed. (Samaritans of Jesus’ day were treated by the religious community like gay people often get treated by some of today’s Christian community.) None of this kept Jesus away or kept him from offering her living water. Maybe Jesus wants Christ-followers who will be less like the Pharisees and more like him—unshockable.
Luke tells of a time Simon the Pharisee invited Jesus to dinner. Jesus and his disciples went and “reclined at the table” (Luke 7:36) along with Simon’s religious friends, who were skeptical about Jesus’ true identity—mainly because he showed more love for “sinners” than love for the Law of Moses (Jesus had just made it clear this wasn’t true; he came to fulfill the intent of the Law of Moses). They invited Jesus there to judge him, not learn from him.
Middle Eastern dining style consisted of a one-foot high table with pillows on the floor for seating, usually with feet stretched out to the side or behind them. As the meal proceeded, an immoral woman crashed the party. She sheepishly made her way over to stand behind Jesus. Luke makes sure we know she had “lived a sinful life” (v. 37). She did not just have a few slip-ups, but rather had made a life out of her sexual deviancies, and everyone knew it! Her mud was public knowledge. Her whole life, she had felt judged and condemned by the religious establishment, so to go into the house of her tormentors took enormous courage.
Yet there she stood … because Jesus was there! Somehow word on the street had traveled to her through the crowd she hung out with—there’s hope in Jesus for the muddiest human. Hearing he had come near, an unstoppable force welling up from within had drawn her to his feet. As she stood in his presence, hope burst through the dam of all that pain that had driven her mudslinging behavior—she started to cry. Her tears accidentally landed on Jesus’ dirty feet (that his host had not shown the common courtesy to wash).
The tension in the room mounted; everyone’s shoulders tightened as she fell to her knees behind Jesus, bent down and wiped his wet, dirty feet with her hair. She took out a bottle of oil mixed with perfume, took the oil in her hands and gently stroked his feet with the oil—kissing them as she anointed him with the perfume.
Jesus just sat there, never flinching, eyes fixed on the Pharisees, watching them react in shock and disbelief—flames of contempt shooting out of their merciless eyes.
Simon could stand it no more. This outrageous scene had proven his point. He muttered to himself and his “more respectable” guests, “If this man were a prophet, he would know who is touching him and what kind of woman she is—that she is a sinner” (Luke 7:39).
In other words, if Jesus were truly a prophet, he would know about her scandalous sexual sin, and he would be shocked. But Jesus did know and was not shocked!
Now you have to realize, this was a controversial situation. Imagine a known prostitute coming up to your pastor, kissing his feet and rubbing oil on them after the Sunday service. It would be his last Sunday at most churches if he didn’t put an end to it fast! What was Jesus thinking? Why didn’t this shock Jesus like it would all of us?