CNLP 033: Growing Up With Gay Parents—An Interview with Caleb Kaltenbach

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Caleb Kaltenbach has an incredible story.

Born to parents who soon divorced to pursue gay relationships, Caleb grew up to become a Christian and then a pastor, much to the alarm of his parents.

Caleb shares his honest, gutwrenching story of confusion, hope and reconcilliation with his mom, his dad and their partners.

Welcome to Episode 33 of the Podcast.

Messy Grace: How a Pastor with Gay Parents Learned to Love Others Without Sacrificing Conviction – Available October 20, 2015!

MessyGraceBook.com

Caleb Kaltenbach on Twitter

Caleb Kaltenbach on Facebook

Discovery Church

The End of Sexual Identity: Why Sex is too Important to Define Who We Are by Jenell Williams Paris

Kara Powell; Episode 4

Gene Appel at East Side Christian Church

3 Things You Can Do Right Away

Conversation about homosexuality in the church can be uncomfortable, and as a pastor with gay parents, Caleb Kaltenbach has felt the tension within each community. Here’s how you can get started with bridging the gap between each side:

  1. Understand the difference between acceptance and approval. When someone we love comes out to us, it doesn’t mean we change our relationship. Thank them for allowing you to come into this season of their life and trusting you. That doesn’t mean you have to approve of the behavior. Sexuality is between a man and a woman; it’s not the only thing that defines them, and that’s where the line is drawn. We can love the person, but we don’t have to approve of what happens.
  2. Invite the conversation into church. Christians in the church think they have to “get their act together” and have to play a certain part. But Caleb says that when we don’t allow messy conversations in churches, we create sanctuary for fake people. Start engaging with your leadership team, and let the conversation work through the entire church. Keep communication open and affirming, and talk to other churches about what the conversation looks like in their ministries. Be honest and allow people to feel like they belong before they believe.
  3. Create a safe environment. Discussion of sexuality opens up vast vulnerabilities on both sides, and it’s not a black or white issue. It was difficult for Caleb when he “came out as a Christian” to his gay parents, but it encouraged him to show the same love and compassion he always had for them. “I had to spend so much time treating them well, loving them, even when they came at me with patronizing Bible questions. I wanted to build that trust again so they could see that nothing really had changed,” he said. You can apply the same principles in your church as you open up the conversation with others. Invite others out to dinner, and get to know them. Put a face to the individual instead of looking at them by just their sexuality.

Quotes from Caleb

Without messy conversations in church, we create sanctuaries for fake people. @calebwilds Click To Tweet There are Christians who act like jerks, and they give the rest of us a bad name. @calebwilds Click To Tweet God calls us to accept everyone. That doesn’t mean we approve of everything they do. @calebwilds Click To Tweet When someone we love comes out to us, it doesn’t mean we change our relationship. @calebwilds Click To Tweet

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Next Episode: Wayne Cordova

Some leaders are tech geeks. Others are not. In an incredibly helpful, practical episode, GeekPastor.com’s Wayne Cordova walks leaders through beginner, intermediate and geek level apps, tools, hacks and strategies that can help every leader free up time to do the real work of leadership.

Subscribe for free now, and you won’t miss Episode 34.

What’s Stopping Your Church From Growing? 

Over the years, I’ve worked with thousands of church leaders to help them understand the dynamics of church growth.

And here’s what I've learned.

It’s almost never a lack of passion or effort that leads to stagnation, it’s that growing churches are effective at removing the barriers that stand between them and reaching more people.

And that’s exactly why I created The Art of Church Growth course.

By taking a thorough evaluation of your leadership team, volunteer core, missional alignment, and culture, you'll create an action plan to:

  1. Discover and eliminate the barriers that keep your church from growing
  2. Guide your church through transformational conversations that lead to growth and discipleship

While only God can grant growth, you can position your church for it. The best time to do that is now.

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Carey Nieuwhof
Carey Nieuwhof

Carey Nieuwhof is a best-selling leadership author, speaker, podcaster, former attorney, and church planter. He hosts one of today’s most influential leadership podcasts, and his online content is accessed by leaders over 1.5 million times a month. He speaks to leaders around the world about leadership, change, and personal growth.

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