The organisation, Stonewall, was set up in 1989 as a reaction to the introduction of Section 28. After years of lobbying and pressure, the law was finally taken off the statute books in 2003. Those who set up Stonewall, and many others, had a vision of what life should be for LGBT people. They worked away and continue to work to make the seemingly impossible become reality. They used a mixture of waiting – for the right moment, for the right people, for the right turn of events, and preparation – researching, gathering support, planning and organising, to achieve their goal. Underneath all of this was faith in their cause – belief that the seemingly impossible would become reality.
In the letter to the Hebrews 11:1, faith is described in this way: ‘Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.’ During this Advent time of waiting and preparation, it is good to remind ourselves of the faithfulness of God. We may recall the times in the past when we have trusted God and waited for answer to prayer, perhaps for some things that seemed impossible at the time. We may be able to see where our heartfelt prayers were answered and take a moment to give thanks. There may be situations now, personally and globally, where we need to have ‘confidence in what we hope for’ and ask God how we might work with God’s Spirit to be part of the answer to our own prayer. This is what turns a vision into reality, the kingdom of Jesus thriving on earth. From “pretend family relationships” to legal marriage – almost as unlikely as angels and shepherds!