I got to know who Justin Lee was when I became acquainted with the “Bridges Across the Divide” website. Years before I was even connected with New Direction, the spouse of one of our ministry’s board members was one of the first group to get that site started. Seems like bridging and the ministry of reconciliation has been in our blood for some time.
Justin went on from Bridges Across to form the Gay Christian Network which is an online community for gay Christians of diverse theological perspectives. If you’ve never visited their site, go take a look: www.gaychristian.net
I spoke with Justin for the first time, when I called him to talk about the possibility of coming to a GCN conference – which I shared more about here. I was so impressed with his generosity of spirit. He could have slammed the phone down saying, “A lot of our members have been really hurt in Exodus ministries – and we don’t want you coming anywhere near our conference.” I would have understood if he had done that. But he didn’t. He took me at my word when I explained my reason for wanting to attend – a big step of trust on his part – and when I met him at the conference he was gracious, kind and inviting. After meeting him, he was someone I knew I would like.
As the ideas began to come together for our Bridging the Gap dvd, I knew that Justin would be a wonderful candidate to interview. His perspective was one that the piece needed to have – even if some of the things he shared would be stretching or uncomfortable or disagreed with by many of our viewers. What I hoped that people would walk away and be challenged with is the clear love and commitment that Justin has in his personal and intimate relationship with Jesus Christ.
In the midst of all of our disagreements about theology and homosexuality, we can begin to build a bridge when we see one another’s humanity – and for those of us who are believers – when we see one another’s love for Christ.
During the interview, I asked Justin, “Why would you want to be part of an initiative of a ministry like New Direction?” …… I asked it anticipating that his answer would hit the heart of the matter of what we were trying to accomplish with our DVD piece. Well in this clip, you hear part of Justin’s answer. And whether you agree with everything he says or not ….. I challenge you in the Spirit of Christ to open your heart to hear and connect with Justin, our brother in the Lord.
Thank you Justin for being so willing and generous to be a part of Bridging the Gap!