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8 comments | Sunday, March 18, 2007

I first met Albert Lee in the fall of 2001 working in the off- broadway show No Easy Walk to Freedom in New York City. I was cast as a dancer in the ensemble and he was a lead soloist. We quickly grew to become really close friends during the run of the show and remained in contact with each other after I decided to leave New York.

Albert holds a master's degree from the Juilliard School of Music and has a voice that is truly anointed. He is a man of integrity and strength and someone that I often look to for support and spiritual guidance. Many of our conversations tackle the challenge of reconciling your spirituality with your sexuality, a challenge that we have both faced head on.

Each week on this site he will be delivering a "word" for all who choose to receive it, especially those of us who feel shunned by the church or even by God himself.

Albert Lee

I am so excited to begin sharing this weekly commentary with you. After several years of friendship with Darian and countless conversations about spiritual issues I am grateful for the opportunity to share some of my views on the issue of spirituality and sexual expression. You should know upfront that Darian and I don’t always view these issues in the same way and on many occasions we have disagreed. Darian’s invitation for me to contribute to this blog is a testament to his commitment to serve the LGBT community in more ways than just activism. In a time where issues of sexuality have been used to sway elections and the Bible has been used to support personal prejudice it is of grave importance that the message of Jesus Christ and the Church is offered to all people.

While I consider myself to be a learned man of God, I do not claim to have all the answers. What I will share with you is based on my own sojourn toward understanding and accepting my own sexuality. Although this is a journey that has been wrought with spiritual highs and lows, many emotional nights, and times of great mental anguish, an unfailing belief that God has a greater purpose for my life has driven me to continue seeking greater truth.

As we attempt to understand spirituality and sexual expression together I pray that my contribution to Living Out Loud with Darian will be a blessing to those who read it, that our lives will be enlightened and that we come to understand the joys of the greatest gift that God has ever offered mankind, salvation through Jesus Christ. I do not begrudge people of other religions and spiritual persuasions their belief, but as a Christian man the foundation of everything that I am is built on Jesus Christ and it is from that perspective that I share with you.

For this first post I leave you with the words of Jesus himself for you to contemplate.

John 10:10 “The thief comes not but to steal, kill, and destroy: I am come that you might have life and have it more abundantly.”

What does it mean to have abundant life?

I look forward to hearing your thoughts.

Feel free to leave a comment on this site or you can e-mail Albert at albertrlee@hotmail.com

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<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

Abundant life would be nothing lacking and nothing broken. The question I have is that when we are born into spirituality through our confession, does our spirituality confrom to our sexuality, or does our sexuality come into alignment to our spirituality?

Remember- that is a great difference.

March 19, 2007 10:46 AM

<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

I cant say that I'm surprised that THE CAPTAIN is the first to comment. I would have expected nothing less.

You have given a good start to answering the question of what abundant life is. Although the definition you give is actually a definition of peace (shalom in Hebrew). Peace is certainly apart of abundant life. To the second part of your response I will tell you in a word, don't get ahead of me. Trying to answer these question in a hasty manner using cliches oversimplies the response and doesn't take into consideration a myriad of different experiences people may have had. Your question has nothing to do with my post thus far and I see it as a trap that I will not even attempt to toy with. It is a question you have already answered for yourself and thats great. This commentary is here to give other people a chance to answer their own questions. I hope that my posts will continue to challenge your thinking as you grow in the grace and love of Christ

March 19, 2007 5:08 PM

<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

I'll bide my time. As a Captain, that is one gift you develop early.

March 19, 2007 5:30 PM

<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

albert dont even waste your time with the captain...he is absolutely unaware of who he really is, and so he hides behind the mask of religion as my grandmother would say "he is so spiritual until he is no earthly good". I can tell by your response albert that you are far more advanced in levels of spirit so dont fall for the trap.

March 20, 2007 9:14 AM

<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

Good lookin' out Yusef...

Im not sure what the heck THE CAPTAIN's agenda is, but his traps (in a word) are child's play.

I am a firm believer that theology that is motivated by political ideology, bigotry or that can't be substantiated by thorough research and interpretation of biblical texts is quite faulty.

At the same time we do not begrudge THE CAPTAIN his right to disagree. That is the difference between a democracy like the United States and an Islamic Republic like Iran where religious leaders are the authority and dissent is treated harshly.

If there was not debate between Peter and Paul, the message of the Gospel would never have been extended to non-Jews(Gentiles)

Bless you man,

Keep the Faith,


March 20, 2007 10:02 AM

<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

i am almost ready to praise the lord and pass the ammunition(nexy post) but albert - first a special request !

do you think that a fine looking and talented tenor like yourself could find two more brothers to get with and give us a broader choice than having to listen to the mafia (il divo) or those three irish fucks?

please ????????????????????

March 20, 2007 10:32 PM

<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

albert - first lets give props to darian for opening this new line of discussion by hosting you on his blog.

jesus said many things to his followers. life at that time was harsh and short in years. an "abundant life" then would somewhat different than we appreciate now. religous freedom for example in the good old usa. must we be religious strict constructionists? god created his people in his own image - smart - and certainly smart enough to ask questions?

there is a difference between spirituality and religion. between organized worship and a sense of place and wonder in the natural world.

as children we marvel in our bodies, as adults we marvel in the bodies of others. the human connection is always spiritual. we are a sexual people, created in gods image. we should celebrate our nature rather than feel shame in it.

the captain does not think or question freely. his question reveals the prison he has created in his own mind.

and to finish somewhatr shallowly.. since you have history with darian - when he was dancing was he as much the hottie as he seems to be today???

March 20, 2007 10:45 PM

<$BlogCommentAuthor$> said...

Hey Pono...

Groups like Il Divo, Three Irish Tenors, and others play on Americas relative ignorance to classical artforms and our obsession with aesthetic beauty. I love opera becasue it is an artform that forces you to use your imagination, think on multiple levels (visually, aurally) and it combines many of the classical art forms in one(singing, dance, drama, orchestral music.) The way our society works is this: If money can be made producers are going to capitalize as best they can. I hope for the day when music, dance, drama, and art are taught in public schools so that children can develop more completely.

Now to the spiritual...

You make a great point that "abundant life" to the people of Jesus day means something very different to us living in the US today. However, understanding that Jesus by nature is not limited to the time when he walked the earth, neither are His words. His message has a universality that transcends time and culture. In the next post, we will try to look at how "abundant life" applies to all of us. Once we establish what is common to all when Jesus gives us abundant life, our individual passions and purposes lead us to the specifics of what "abundant life" is for us individually.

What is wonderful is that balance with which God does everything. Our connection to God is both communal( i.e. church/body of Christ/community of believers) and personal/individual. One without the other is incomplete. We will talk about this more in future posts.

If you have anything you'd like to discuss further here is how to IM me.


and of course Myspace.


March 21, 2007 11:08 AM


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