Why do “those people” need to march in a Pride parade?

“Why do those people need to march in the streets? Why do they call it Pride?…After all they are sinning, there’s no pride in sinning! Why do they need to do these things?”

I had those questions in the distant past, and saw them pop up by conservative friends recently. It’s taken me a long time to answer those questions.

I attended my first Pride event last year. I noticed no hedonism, no debauchery, no licentious sex, none of that Sodom and Gomorrah that many insist happens at these events. It was just a fun time with people from my church and I ran into a few friends during the day. This is a very low-key event but it was just fun and relaxing.

It occurred to me as we start this celebration of Pride month in June, exactly why LGBT folks want to have a pride parade or even a pride gathering.

Every LGBT person that shows up for Pride has a lot in common.

Such as…

A high percentage of us have been kicked out of our churches for being honest about who we are. Some have been kicked out of our homes.

Nearly all of us has received some sort of harassment verbally or physically, especially when coming out.

Many in this group of LGBT people have given up on religion altogether because they’ve been treated like dirt at their churches solely for being honest, oh the irony. This is something Jesus would never do, but too many institutional churches are happy to kick someone to the curb who doesn’t fit within their often-cliquish social constructs.

The pain of being kicked to the curb runs deep. Our social circles are often inside that church that cast us out.  God doesn’t insist this occur, only people who claim to know about God insist the gay or transgender person be cast aside.

Who shall we then convene with? Who shall we trust to hang out with? People that are just like us, other LGBT folks.  A safe place to convene without harassment.

There it is, the answer. It’s quite simple, Pride is a safe place to hang out for a day or two so we can just be ourselves.

Pride is a safe place, an oasis from the daily pain we bear from being told we are abominations, aberrations, backsliders, perverts, rejection from churches, unworthy of Jesus’ salvation…An oasis from being told from  family and friends that have disowned us that we are going to spend “eternity in hell”…those same people no longer talk with us.  It’s a safe place to gather so we can forget that some of us had jobs that we were pushed out of because of who we are.

Being honest with fellow man has cost us dearly.

We are not abominations or aberrations, we are people too, many with deep faith in God.

All that Pride means is a safe place to convene with others just like us who are honest about ourselves. God is proud of you and me.

Since many churches won’t offer a refuge for those who are honest about their gender and sexuality, is making our own safe place such a bad thing?

I think not.


-Monica Jean Maday

Why I’m not voting for a Republican candidate for the first time in my life this year

This is how my party left me, I did not leave it.

A bit of recent history is in order…

As a conservative/libertarian, “conservatarian”, my core values center around the following original Tea Party values & principles in early 2009:

– Reduced size of the government
– Balanced budgets & limited/zero debt
– True freedom of religion
– Truth in politics

That was known as the Tea Party version 1.0. A mix of any Democrat, Republicans, Independents…Americans coming together in unision saying “hold the elected officials responsible for their actions”.

Both party establishments knew this would be bad for their parties. It had to be, a grass roots movement that doesn’t claim an R or D before it that has overwhelming response AND asks politicians be accountable can’t be good in a runaway spending environment.

So the Tea Party, now version 2.0, is a known as a dissolved, deflated version of it’s original self as a faction of the hard core conservative area of the political spectrum. They parrot ideas to social media, not anything like 2009.

Sigh. So much for holding politicians responsible for spending our money. And our kid’s money.

As a conservative and Christian, truth is front & center of any belief or event. I have always believed that. And when I see my Republican party cut the ropes of it’s moorings time & time again, disillusionment of the establishment GOP becomes a real thing.

Reduced size of government?
Balanced budgets & limited/zero debt?
What the GOP candidates say, vs what they do.

Bush 41 Said: “Read my lips, no new taxes”
Bush 41 Did: Raised taxes.

Bush 43 Said: “New tone”
Bush 43 Did: The “New tone” expanded spending tremendously. Bailed out banks.

John Boehner: Backed down against expansion of government.
Paul Ryan: Same.

Trump isn’t Republican. He’s a Democrat with a few libertarian ideas. No thanks Donald.

Ted Cruz Said: When asked, will you bail out the banks?” Said: “NO!”
Ted Cruz Did: His wife was a top exec for the largest bank in the USA. His retirement loans are also held at the same bank. One of his top 5 campaign donors? That same bank. Of course he will bail out banks, they own him.

Rush Limbaugh taught me to always “follow the money”…And that I’m doing…and finding smoke and mirrors, just like every other candidate this election cycle. Sorry Cruz, you’re just another GOP establishment R and our country doesn’t need that.

We don’t need promises on reduced abortion. We’ve been told that for 40 years. Yet not a single republican has done anything in the Executive branch that would actually remove 80%+ of the non-necessary abortions in this country. Pulling funding from Planned Parenthood won’t provide a true solution, that was a political move. Standing up for right for people to live their life will.

NOTHING. The establishment doesn’t want to touch abortion, even though it’s candidates parrot the same promises year after year of wanting to address the issue. Millions have died because no one is acting to truly do anything for the ‘least of these’.
True Freedom of Religion?
True freedom, as the authors of the Constitution intended. Where you live your religion, without infringing on others. Simple stuff.

What do we have today in the GOP that’s considered righteous and God-like? A Kim Davis brand of ‘freedom of religion’ that is far from what the original framers of our country envisioned. You have freedom as long as it places you as victim, that no one else can encroach on your ‘freedoms’.

Not handing out marriage licenses is not a freedom of religion, it’s a personal decision to not hand out marriage licenses. If you don’t want to do that, fine, step aside. That’s it. It’s your job to hand out the marriage license, so do it. If you agree to make a cake for a wedding, make the best cake and be the best example of Jesus’ love and spirit you can when you deliver the cake to their wedding. That’s religious freedom. That’s faith and responsibility.

Instead we see a continual stream of victim-first Christians folks (I know, I was one of these for a long time) who claim their God is the God of the universe and is all powerful yet is so mixed in with politics from Focus on the Family, Liberty Counsel, Alliance of Defending Freedom, Family Research Counsel…all willing to spill lies and half-truths (which are lies) about social issues, especially LGBT folks. After all, there are many LGBT conservative folks like myself. I don’t appreciate lies being touted as truth.

Such as two bills currently on the Tennessee house today: one bill to force transgender kids to use the restroom of their birth genitals and the other to say clergy-only are allowed to marry anyone in the state of Tennessee.

Let’s not forget a third bill which will lead to even higher death rate of LGBT kids that’s being voted on this week as well here in TN.

All three bills backed by the same GOP who are against LGBT folks, even conservative LGBT folks. All in the name of being moral and God-like. REALLY? GOP: you do realize you’re pushing people out of your own party, right?

As a mostly conservative, devoutly Christian, transgender woman, I can tell you first hand how these bills will drive young kids far from your party.  And the anti-bathroom bill?  It will drive kids to suicide. Yes, suicide.  You know not the abysmal struggle we face, yet you’ll never meet with any of them, you’ll stay in your ivory towers, insulated from their real lives.  By adding pressure by fiat from adults they’ve never met but are running their lives, you’re only making it more dark and dismal for them.  Will you take the time to understand this?  I have a feeling you’ll only listen to those who pay your campaigns money, not the young ones who are just trying to make it through life with a minimal amount of bullying.

GOP: If you’re truly pro-life, that includes the lives of LBGT folks too (hey, we’re Americans as well!), you won’t vote for these bills.

To the GOP policay makers…life is precious, whether it’s an unborn baby that you won’t stand up for in any substantive, truly-changing way, or whether LGBT kids will be pushed into the dark corner of suicide from bullying and conversion/reparative therapy.

Heck, at least you’re consistent in being “pro-life”… because more deaths happen while hiding behind the pro-life label than not. Congrats!
WHEN DID MY PARTY TURN INTO BATHROOM COPS? We are under tremendous debt, immigration policy is a laughing stock, have no party head in this election yet we are so concerned about where kids take a pee?

That is why I’m not voting Republican this election. I can no longer tell the difference between a vicious, demeaning politician from many preachers who claim that if you “vote for candidate X you’ll go to hell”.

This is what the original writers of our Constitution warned us about…not mixing state with a state-sanctioned religion. We have this now, it’s so-called evangelical religion glued to politicians who think they have been appointed by God to make policy.

Nowhere is this more evident than Lebanon, TN with Mark Pody (R) “I believe I’m supposed to be speaking to the unsaved, to the people that are performing same-sex marriages, to the people involved in same-sex marriage, it is wicked, it is wrong and I am doing the best I can to warn them.”

God of course didn’t tell him that, but he’s unable to tell the difference between true freedom of religion and what passes as religious freedom these days.

Truth in Politics?
The GOP has drifted far out to sea away from it’s core, underlying beliefs that are best for everyone…those are the Tea Party v1.0 core beliefs. Tragically for the USA, the GOP is no longer a party filled with truth, it’s a party filled with ideology dressed in the drag of truth. They look pretty, but they devour our tax dollars as fast as the Democrats after the election is ovoer. A wolf in sheep’s clothing the GPO now is. The party has not provided and true action actually doing something about removing our debt. No true action on abortion in 4 decades. No reduction of government’s size and encroachment on every American.

I can’t tell the difference between Democrats and Republicans now. Except that Republicans do things “in the name of God”. (A fear-based, politically motivated God? Don’t think so!) Ugghhh.

No longer do I find much truth in the Republican party.  Smoke & mirrors sold as “pro-American!” and “pro-God!”.  Sell all you want, you don’t come through after the election.  All talk, and more big government. 🙁

That’s why I voted for the last true Conservatarian, the last true guy who fired up the US economy, who reduced taxes, was imperfect, but did a service to all Americans by being in office, not disservice.

In the primary election this past month, I wrote in this statesman and true American who believed in all Americans, not just ones who gave money to him: Ronald Reagan.

He was the last candidate the GOP gave us that was worth voting for. Call it a protest vote, but I can’t bring myself to vote for any of these characters.  I’ll vote Reagan him again in the general elections as there are no candidates who stand for these principles in 2016.

We’ve been told many things…but one of those things wasn’t the true love of Jesus

Why is this thing called “Conversion Therapy” such a big deal?

(these are thoughts mulling around in my head for a long time…years…and listening to “Saving Alex” solidified much of them, thank you Alex!)

What is Conversion Therapy?  It’s sending your kid away to be cured from being gay/trans.  Or having the local church “fix” the person.  Demanding conformity to a system as proof of change, and saying God said so.

We’ve been told this is God’s way of dealing with your heinous sin.

We’ve been told that God approves of such barbaric conversion therapy methods to ‘fix’ kids from being gay. Because:

We’ve been told that if you’re gay/trans, you can’t go to heaven until you repent and turn from their sin.

We’ve been told for a few generations that a trans person is delusional and needs psychiatric help.  We’ve been told that the LBGT agenda  is out to ruin marriage and this country.

We’ve been told that “go and sin no more” is the ultimate litmus test for a Christian to be free of sin.

We’ve been told many things that are now shown to be completely false, including all of those mentioned above.   Yet too many believe these things wholeheartedly, and with such a passionate zeal you wonder if they believe the same God as others.  And mix it into the current political climate, and those who still believe in these falsehoods, and it becomes a toxic force to behold. Who can stand in the way of God?…or can stand in the way of men who claim to have God’s best interest at heart as they ostracize and politicize a minority of this country for the sake of “righteous vengeance”?

Who gave them the scales?

God, they’ll claim.

LGBT kids who are rejected by their parents have a much higher rate of drug use and suicide attempts. Why?  LGBT kids need your love and acceptance.  That’s it.  Nothing else.  While many parents  struggle with watching their own dreams come crashing down when a kid comes out as gay/trans, your true parental, God-like full-acceptance love will show them  the best example of Jesus there is anywhere on earth.

Attempting to fix them or cast them away leads to the higher suicide rates and much higher drug use.

“But what if our kid can be fixed?”  Such an alluring question for parents as it means their lives won’t be turned upside down, they needn’t be challenged in their peer circles or at church, the pastor will easily approve of methods because “God says so”…and on it goes to make the comfort of the parent first and foremost.  That’s the problem, the parent comes first, the kids are demanded to fit in to their perception of life.  And the kid suffers mightily.

That’s toxic.

That’s wrong.

And for a long time I believed all that stuff too.

I thought I needed to follow suit, to conform, to be fixed.  I knew nothing else.  And I fully accepted it.  Until all this gender stuff popped up.  The only choice I had was to live or kill myself.  That’s it.  There’s no other choice.  I haven’t been lied to by a liberal agenda, no liberal kool-aid was consumed, etc…the only choice is to live.  If I hadn’t have chosen life, many of you would never have known me.  And many would have wondered why Mike offed himself as my memory would have quickly faded, just like the bottles of Vodka I used to consume to fend-off the abysmal emotional hell I lived in.

But I would have taken my secret to the grave!  How awesome is that!  No challenging others to look beyond the ironclad gates of religious doctrine for greater understanding in God!  There wouldn’t be a need to love any deeper, only wonder “Bless his dead heart, why did he do that?” as they go about their merry, legalistic ways.

They wouldn’t have had to concern themselves about how to handle an LGBT person in their midst because I would have been pushing daisies.  The conformity-based systems including guilt, shame and religious performance, and conversion therapy push people into suicide and drug use because we can not change who we are at the core. But these sub-systems are best because “God” would want it that way.  Or so we’ve been told. Because conforming to the system of expectations is more important than life!….that’s essentially what we’ve been told as well.

I chose life, outside the box of religious expectations.  I knew I’d be made fun of, talked down to, berated, ridiculed because of my “decision”.  But thankfully only a handful of people took the scales and held them against me, ignoring my testimony and replacing their demands for conformity.

But most people have been either “meh, whatevz” or cheerful supporters.

People: don’t think of GSA or PFLAG as the enemy.  They’re not.  ISIS is our enemy.  Lying politicians placing us further into debt is our enemy.  Kids who say “I’m gay/trans” and parents that support them are NOT the enemy!  How hard is this?  Don’t try to forcibly fix them!  They cannot be fixed.  You didn’t fail as a parent, you only need to be an example of Jesus love to them and steer them as they travel thru life just as you would if they were straight.   They chose to be gay as much as you chose to be stratight.

You know what the GSA or PFLAG is?  A place for people of like-souls to get together and just be, in safety.  It’s no more complex than that.

If the KKK has constitutional right to congregate, why are people opposed to people to GSA or PFLAG groups congregating?  Because you believe God said so?  Because you believe that they are the enemy? Really?  REALLY?

Stop treating fellow Americans like dirt, when they have the scarlet letter L,G,B,or T branded onto them.  No matter what you think, they will indeed be standing next to you in heaven because they believe in the same Jesus you do. They will be fighting on the same battlefields as you.  They will be fighting to pay their bills just like you.

But they can’t do that if they’ve been leaning on drugs or standing on the razor’s edge of suicide because you removed your love for them.  They will spend years attempting to get over conversion therapy, most come out the other side of such conversion places worse than when they went in.  Read Alex’s book, she attempted suicide.

Jesus never treated his children like that. Ever.  What gives you the scales to be pretentious and go against the deep lessons Jesus illustrated in the red words?

red letters
They need your love, not your doctrine, nor your fears of how your church body will react.  They deeply desire to be loved for they are in your presence…just like we desire the same with God.  Don’t subject your kids to anything less.

Just remember, they won’t be living the American dream by definition, but nearly every LGBT person I’ve ever met, Democrat or Republican, fully supports you living yours.

Don’t interfere with them living their lives.  It works both ways.

In Him,
Monica Jean

Please don’t call me a Christian anymore.

Please don’t call me a Christian anymore.

The web site rawstory can sometimes sensationalize Christians and makes them look bad. Not this time. All it took was a Christian taking the words of the bible completely out of context and putting her false understanding on display for the world to see. (link at bottom of this article)

She prayed that the storm wouldn’t hit her place of residence.  I’m not judging her heart…it may very well be completely faithful to God.  I’m not saying she isn’t shell-shocked by the event that just transpired in front of her…I give her much latitude in her possible emotional distress of the situation and I’m glad she’s OK.  Severe weather is nothing to mess with!

However, the example given for the world to see by her misinterpreting what the bible says…well…it’s unnerving.  Here’s her quote:

“We actually went outside and started commanding the winds, because God had given us authority over the winds, the airways,” Lowe said. “And we just began to command this storm not to hit our area. We spoke to the storm and said, ‘Go to unpopulated places.’ It did exactly what we said to do, because God gave us the authority to do that.”

She prayed that the storm would go elsewhere to not affect them. Listen to the embedded audio clip at that link for yourself.

Cringeworthy is an understatement.

(These storms generally have a north east path, was she away from the line of storms that traveled on a north east trajectory?)

Let’s examine the most likely reference in the bible she is referring to, Mark 4:29: “And He got up and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, “Hush, be still.” And the wind died down and it became perfectly calm.”

The wind became calm as Jesus commanded. However, no storms were sent elsewhere to cause damage on anyone else.

If we continue reading verses 30-31: “And He said to them, “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?” They became very much afraid and said to one another, “Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey Him?”

Jesus did this for reasons to show them the power of God and to encourage faith in his small crew.

Shall we blatantly take the Word of God out of it’s proper context to shield ourselves to hurt others? No, but that’s what happened. I’m sure she was taught this by someone who is a preacher of the Word. And this happens far too often these days…all in the name of ‘proper doctrine’…remember, the cold-hearted & stiff-necked Pharisees were fantastic teachers of the Word but had zero mercy, love or grace in their souls.

No wonder people look to Christians and say “I don’t want to be like them” because the world sees the Christians as selfish, willing to protect one’s area at the cost of other people.

The world is watching, and it’s disgusted at what it sees. Rather than faith that God requests, it sees forced rigid conformity inside systems at the hands of mortal mankind and people clutching to falsehoods such as “God gave us authority over the winds”.

No, God gave you authority over your body & soul. From there we love others…there’s where His spirit flows…and it flows mightily. Not by wishing storm winds elsewhere.

Rather than the world seeing Christians as hope for making healing bridges of love through savior Jesus, it see institutions protecting their territories, fortifying their gates with conditional clauses and wishing away everyone that doesn’t fit in their small boxes of understanding.

So please, don’t ever call me a Christian again. I much prefer to be called Jesus Follower, one who believes the Red words have incredible meaning and where my savior Jesus shows us examples of love and guidance, not retribution based on cherry-picking verses out of context…Jesus doesn’t do that but too many others are happy to do so claiming they know the Word…umm, NO! That’s not how this Christianity thing works.

Our example of following Jesus is on full display. Rarely is there an option of a system that fully allows for the life of His spirit to flow. Those churches are out there but sadly they are a small minority. Which leaves two choices for most people…which one do you choose for the world to see…Lifeless conformity to man-created institutions that has the world spitting you out or life-filled faith based solely on Jesus’ example?

No pressure, the world is watching.

Thank you,
A Jesus Follower