Welcome Ex-Gays Into Your Church
Many religious denominational conferences/conventions take place in almost every church organization. NOW WOULD BE A GREAT TIME TO MAKE A MOTION AT YOUR CHURCH’S STATE/REGIONAL MEETING THAT A FORMER GAY BE INVITED TO SHARE HIS/HER TESTIMONY AT THE NEXT CONVENTION/CONFERENCE.
HERE IS A SAMPLE MOTION you can use:
"In order to applaud (our denomination's) belief in Christ’s power to free men and women from homosexuality, and to glorify Him ‘who makes all things new’, I move that we invite a former homosexual to share his or her testimony at next year’s convention."
Here is how this can be done:
I. PREPARE YOUR MOTION!
What is a motion? Motions are proposals by which an organization establishes its policies and sets its future course of action.
1. Determine your motion’s objective; ask God to show you His agenda!
Does anyone really believe God has relegated this issue to a corner of His celestial desk? Do we mistakenly believe the Creator is "out of ideas"?
What do you want to happen?
-- to include an ex-gay ministry in the church’s budget
-- to develop a task force to explore ways of ministry to those struggling with unwanted same sex attractions
-- to designate a Sunday worship service in addressing the ex-gay issue
-- to invite an ex-gay to speak to a missions organization
Always take into consideration your audience; while those of us in ex-gay ministry are accustomed to using certain terms, regular folk are not.
2. Draft and revise your motion document.
Motions should be carefully prepared, usually in written form. They should be stated affirmatively in language that is clear, precise, unambiguous, and spells out what is to be done, by whom, and when. A Motion calls for action.
Concrete, not vague! "I move that we encourage our denomination to move forward in ex-gay ministry." This is a vague motion.
"I move that our church, Mt. Zion Chapel, contact Dr. Denominational Leader(s) in order that a delegation from our membership meet with him. The sole purpose of that meeting is to express our collective concern that ex-gay resources be developed for sharing Christ with the homosexual. I further move that the delegation, to be determined by the church staff, share the results of such meeting within 30 days of said meeting."
You must communicate immediately in the motion where you stand on the issue. Any ambiguity as to what you believe about homosexuality will confuse the church body and risk the motion being voted down.
It should be Christ-centered and affirm the body. A well-written Christ-centered motion is hard to vote down. Dr Stephen Olford says, "God is always pleased when His Son is spoken well of!"
II. STATE YOUR MOTION IN PUBLIC
A. Maintain your composure and demeanor.
Avoid any negativity, anger, or a "know it all" attitude.
To make a motion of any kind, a member rises and addresses the chair to request recognition, and, on being recognized, states the motion.
Your purpose is not to polarize people but to mobilize people for ministry.
"Let’s turn down the heat on the issue and turn up the light."
B. Articulate your motion or resolution before your audience.
Pray for God’s anointing as you speak.
Practice saying it out loud.
Have a friend critique the motion as well as your delivery of the motion.
Use a firm, yet compassionate voice.
Avoid preaching or lecturing.
Do not use patronizing or condescending language.
"Recognizing that our general assembly should have done this light years ago, I move..." NOPE
"Because our denomination can’t see the forest for the trees, I move..." NOPE
Diplomacy is the ability to make a point without making an enemy.
Be prepared for media questions! A reporter may call you aside and ask you to elaborate on your motion. Again, be positive; honor Christ; do not allow the reporter to pull you into criticizing your denomination.
Tact is the ability to make a point without making an enemy.
C. "Speak to" your motion if permitted.
"Speaking to" a motion allows you the freedom to elaborate on the motion, justify the need for the motion, and honor Christ. I suggest you have this written out.
Don’t raise your voice, rather, reinforce your biblical argument.
III. FOLLOWING-UP ON YOUR MOTION OR RESOLUTION!
Do not let your motion fade.
Build relationships with denominational leaders. (Levels: local church, associational, regional, state, national)
1. Contact those persons to whom your motion is referred.
There is a denominational leader out there whose heart is as passionate as yours in this area; pray to find him/her.
2. Communicate a genuine Christ-like spirit in all communications.
Avoid knee-jerk reactions, tame your tongue; losing your temper will only diminish the opportunity to build inroads.
3. Conquer all objections with Scripture.
You know how to use the Bible in opposing homosexuality; do you know how to use the Bible to bolster your case?
God went looking for Adam and Eve
Parable of Prodigal Son
"It’s not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick."
"For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost."
"Go and tell what great things the Lord has done for you."
Be patient, be pleasant, and be persistent.
"As the mother of a gay son whom my husband and I yearn to experience freedom from same-sex attractions, and in recognition of the millions of Southern Baptist parents also dealing with this issue, I move that the designated agency of the Southern Baptist Convention develop ministry resources for those of us who have, for so long, suffered silently."
"In order to applaud Southern Baptist’s belief in Christ’s power to free men and women from homosexuality, and to glorify Him ‘who makes all things new’, I move that the appropriate entity of the Southern Baptist Convention invite a former homosexual to share his or her testimony at next year’s convention."
"Recognizing both the sin of homosexuality and the Church’s pressing need to address homosexuality from a redemptive perspective, I move that our seminaries explore and implement methods to train students in reaching and discipiling the homosexual for Christ."
"I move that our church designate a task force that will research ways we can minister more effectively to those with unwanted same-sex attractions."
"I move that our church add an ex-gay Ministry to our budget and designate a figure to be determined by the budget committee."
CROSS Ministry, Inc.