One of the most popular shows these days is Fixer Upper with Chip and Joanna Gaines. (I live with a very faithful viewer.) The couple has come under fire, though, not for something they’ve said themselves, but for something stated on their church’s website
“Marriage is the uniting of one man and one woman in covenant commitment for a lifetime.”
A Buzzfeed reporter has made a public spectacle of this matter. Since the Gaines are committed Christians, the reporter was curious to know where they stood on the issue of same-sex marriage. That led her to their pastor’s sermon and Antioch Community Church’s website. Unfortunately, the reporter’s curiosity moved from journalism to antagonism, and even a Washington Post writer (who is gay) criticized the Buzzfeed article as a non-story, full of speculation, deceit, and manipulation.
But the barn door is open and the same-sex marriage advocates are running loose with this story, making noise and ranting against the Gaines for even thinking of going to a church that opposes homosexual marriage.
At this point, the Gaines have not made a public statement about the issue. Their pastor and church have, though, and I affirm them for making a firm—but gracious—affirmation of marriage.
Where do we get the courage to stand in the face of opposition?
God’s Spirit. Those who follow Christ are not alone. He places His Holy Spirit in us to live righteously and graciously.
“For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline” (2 Tim. 1:7).
God’s Word. It’s hard to stand when you don’t have a solid foundation to stand on. Christians can stand courageously because their beliefs and convictions, such as the definition of marriage, do not rise out of opinion or tradition. They rise out of the truth—the timeless, unchanging, objective truth—of God’s Word. We can stand courageously when we know we’re standing on truth.
“Though rulers sit together and slander me, your servant will meditate on your decrees. Your statutes are my delight; they are my counselors” (Ps. 119:23-24).
Opposition will continue to come, and not just to public figures like Chip and Joanna Gaines. It comes to all who stand with Christ on His Word, but He gives us the courage to stand firm.