The Value of Truth AND Love

Some people value beliefs above relationship and in so doing lose the truth of love. Some people value relationship above beliefs and in so doing lose the love of truth.

It is far more important for us to value belief and relationship. In doing so we will have both truth and love. The two cannot be separated. I hold strongly to my Christian faith. But, I hold as strongly to the people in my life that God has called me to love. 

I am a husband, a father, a basketball coach, a mentor to young people, a professor at a Christian university, an ordained minister with a major Evangelical denomination, and an older brother. I'll get to that in a minute.  

Over the past couple of weeks or so, I have watched what is taking place in American politics and the republican party. It is what is right and wrong with our country. Let me make this really simple to understand:


What is Right:

-When Governor Romney hired the most qualified person available for the position of Foreign Policy Advisor and Spokesman to his campaign just a few weeks ago

What is Wrong:

-When the right wing of the Republican party petitioned for the removal of Governor Romney's Foreign Policy Advisor and Spokesman just a few short weeks after he was hired

Here is the rest of the story. The person hired a few weeks ago by Governor Romney was Ric Grenell. He is widely known as a loyal conservative to the Republican Party (having served 8 years as the director of communications for four ambassadors to the United Nations during the Bush Administration, and many more years in senate and mayoral offices from North Carolina to California). Prior to these posts, he attended a Christian university, and did his graduate work at Harvard. He is also gay. And, my brother.

Mr. Romney’s campaign manager, Matt Rhoades, said in a statement:

“We are disappointed that Ric decided to resign from the campaign for his own personal reasons. We wanted him to stay because he had superior qualifications.” 

Others are speaking out also:

Bryan Fischer, from the AFA (American Family Association), said on Twitter, “Romney picks out & loud gay as a spokesman. If personnel is policy, his message to the pro-family community: drop dead.”   

First, Grenell did not step down for his own personal reasons. He stepped down because of the personal reasons of many others in a party that he has served faithfully. Unfortunately, when Grenell stepped down he did the right thing (choosing to place Governor Romney's campaign before his own goals) for the wrong reasons (choosing to listen to a culture that values personal beliefs above relationship).

Secondly, if Fischer and the AFA really believes this was about family values, where are the Twitter feeds about other destructive practices such as lying and infidelity amongst campaign employees in American politics? Where does it stop? Will liars or adulterers lose their positions in the coming political landscape?

And that is the real purpose for this blog. Let me finish.

I do not approve of my brothers lifestyle. But, I am in relationship with him because I love him. As a matter of fact, I, like many of you reading this blog, may not approve of the lifestyle of the people who we work with or go to school with. But, we value relationship as much. One of the things that is disappointing to me in our culture is the elite mindset of anyone who places their personal beliefs above relationships. Have we come so far in the last decade that a person who was celebrated in political leadership positions by the Republican party in the past is now vetted, not for the job they do so well, but, because their lifestyle does not match our own? 


We could all do some proof-texting right now of our favorite scripture verses or our personal beliefs that display the contrasting points about sin and sinners, grace and mercy, or simply right and wrong. But, the hills we are willing to die on, or the T-shirt messages we have practiced all of our life must never separate us from having the conversation with others. I have made it a point in my life to never win an argument and lose a relationship. From my understanding of almost 50 years in the Christian faith and almost 30 years in church leadership, the foundational response to all kinds of issues and people should be relationship. Christ and Paul did not call for a divide in our unequal relationships in culture. They called for a divide in our unequal fellowship within the church (the Body of Christ). 

A softball team, a Boy Scout Troop, or a church and para-church organization in the private sector will have unique stances on the basis of their make-up or constitution and by-laws about these issues when it comes to membership or employment. And we should all respect that. However, in the government or public sector, since when did a gay person not become qualified for a communications post simply because they were gay? How many liars are employed by campaigns in America right now? How many fornicators or adulterers are employed by campaigns in America right now? Are they unqualified for service? Why are the right wing Republicans not purging campaigns of these people? Maybe honesty and fidelity should be higher on the priority of the Republican party right now.



Some people value beliefs above relationship and in so doing lose the truth of love. Some people value relationship above beliefs and in so doing lose the love of truth. It is far more important for us to value belief and relationship. In doing so we will have both truth and love. The two cannot be separated. I hold strongly to my Christian faith. But, I hold as strongly to the people in my life that God has called me to love.


Jeff Grenell