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Jeff Austin

Love and Acceptance

  • Love and Acceptance

          When you hear the phrase “…love and acceptance…”, what do you think?  How would you define it, in words or actions?  Do you automatically qualify it?  Is love and acceptance always followed or preceded by ‘if’?  I would like to think that the answer is ‘No’ for most of us.  That said, clearly it is not how it ‘is’ rather than how it ‘should be’.  We are after all just human beings.

          Even at this Minister’s Network, you see repeated examples of “Love and acceptance, if…”  That is sad.  The principle guiding philosophy of the ULC, precludes the ‘if’.

         Let’s take a few minutes and examine our own souls, hearts, minds or whatever  you prefer to call it.  Love and acceptance is a little bit like the principles of real freedom of speech.  To paraphrase a character in a popular movie, “Freedom of speech is someone shouting at the top of their lungs, something that makes your blood boil, your anger rise and that you would maybe violently oppose shouting at the top of yours; and their unquestioned right to do so.”  True love and acceptance is a bit like that.  There can be no ‘if’.  Either you love and accept unconditionally, or you do not.  Yes or no.

          I am by background a Christian, so I will offer this: Mt 22:36 “[Jesus], which is the great[est] commandment in the law?” And he said to him, ’You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it, You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the law and the prophets.”     I am sure there are similar teachings in many other faiths, non-faiths, and paths, and you’ll notice; there is no ‘if’.

         Let’s hope that most of us fall in the ‘yes’ category or do our best to make be so.  That is why we’re here, to celebrate, lean on, fellowship with, and help others with similar visions as ourselves; to minister in each their own method to those we see a need to minister too.  That can be missionary work, pastoral care and help, weddings, handfastings, commitments, funerals, births, witnessing, leading by example, visiting, maybe just listening and so many more things.  Keep that little light burning in the back of your mind, a little bit of neon that says, “Love and Accept”.  “Love and acceptance”, that is the spirit of the ULC, and at least a part of why most of us became ordained in this non-traditional manner.  Just my opinion, what is yours?

    *(This is a repost of a blog that was lost in the deletion.  It is reposted as originally posted.)

1 comment
  • Rev Robert Fuller
    Rev Robert Fuller Brother Jeff:
    I don't think it can be put any better than that.
    ...  more
    November 13, 2009