When I was in Zambia, I spent a week at a Mission Hospital. One evening, the hospital showed an AIDS awareness video. The audience was watching and listening attentively, when the camera panned across a river, where a man stood fishing with a basket.
The crowd erupted. There were hoots of derision, tongues clucking in disapproval, people even threw things at the screen.
I was baffled by the uproar.
My friend explained how in this tribe, only women fish with baskets; men fish with lines. The tribe in the video did the opposite: only men fish with baskets; women fish with lines.
Of course there is nothing essentially male or essentially female about a basket or a line, it's a cultural tradition that is so ingrained that anything different seems wrong.
We had our own little uproar this week, didn't we, Christians?
It's important to remember that we aren't guardians of tradition, but grateful recipients of grace.
If one man decides to fish with a basket, you may fish with a line.
If one woman decides to fish with a line, you may fish with a basket.
We don't need to deride, or yell, or throw things.
In fact, Jesus showed us when Christians can throw stones: never. (You can read about this in the book of John, chapter 8, verses 1-11.) And Jesus showed us how to treat people who are different from us - with mercy and tender kindness. (This one is in the book of Luke, chapter 10, verses 25-37.)
There's a lot the Bible doesn't talk about, and gender identity is one of them. So I don't know what God thinks about Caitlyn Jenner's identification. But I do know what God thinks about Caitlyn Jenner.
It's the same thing He thinks about me, and He does talk about it in the Bible. A lot.
He loves us sinners so much He sent His Beloved Jesus to die for our sins, so that we might believe on Him and not perish but have everlasting life. (You can find that verse in the book of John, chapter 3, verse 16).