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How We Should Respond to the Transgender Conversation

Man-and-woman

Unless you’re living under a rock, you’re all too familiar with Bruce Jenner, now Caitlyn Jenner. Yes, Bruce, now Caitlyn, recently came out with the news that “he” was transitioning to a “she.”

Now, we can go on and on about what’s right, what’s wrong, what’s biblical, what’s not biblical. However, we want to keep this post positive and focus on something that we all can relate to here: internal conflict. It’s very easy to look at a transgender person and judge him/her. It’s even easier to move your fingers across the keyboard and write a not-so-nice comment. However, we challenge you to pause, and then try and step into their shoes. Think back to a time when you were up against something really difficult, something really trying, something that it seems like NO ONE understood, except for you. Do you remember how you felt? Well, take that and amplify it by 100, because that’s how transgender people must feel having to face this internal conflict on a very public stage.

I write this from a Christian perspective. I truly feel for these individuals. I feel for those who are struggling. I feel for those who are sitting in their homes right now reading this and believing they should be the opposite sex. I feel for those who are too afraid to open up to anyone for fear of what might happen next. To those who are praying for God to help and feel completely alone, by just saying to you, “You’re a sinner,” I’m doing nothing good. In fact, I’m condemning you and making the situation worse. Some Christians choose this perspective, but I don’t think it’s effective or will ever help expand the Gospel in our day and age.

The reality is I don’t truly know what the Bible says about this debate fully. We can point to scripture such as Deuteronomy 22:5 and quickly realize that this passage isn’t specifically about “this,” it’s about women not wearing warrior/armor clothing. It’s not a moral law per se, it’s a ceremonial law. Context in the Bible DOES help a lot on anything.

So, as many of you DO discuss the transgender issue in your social circles, I believe you should take the following stance.

1. Speak about what is good. Transgender people are people like you and me. They are sinners like you and me. They are struggling in some way like you and me. We’re all human, we’re all full of flaws. Talk up what is good instead of focusing on the negative.

2. Speak about what is true. Jesus tells us to love our neighbors as ourselves. He doesn’t say love your neighbor as yourself if you agree with them. No, it states over and over again to love them. No. Matter. What. As we believe that the Word of God is the truth, the truth will set us free. The truth is, loving people no matter what is what Jesus tells us to do, period.

3. Pray for those struggling with their identity. It can be an isolating and lonely experience. Ask God to give you an opportunity to minister to someone in your life who could use the light and hope of Christ. Pray that God gives you wisdom concerning how you act, speak and react to those going through situations you don’t understand.

That’s it. That’s all you need to do. There is plenty of guidance in the Bible about listening more and talking less. And as we stated in our homosexuality article, the same can be applied here. In this day and age we talk first, we attack first. Let’s stop it. Let’s be the place that transgender people WANT to come to for help and support. Let’s share the true message of Jesus, not one of condemnation and ridicule, but of love and selfLESSness.

Let’s put our own opinions and differences aside and come together in unity and in love. In doing so, we’ll free our minds of evil thoughts and become the difference-makers this world needs.

Image: Lightstock | Prixel Creative

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40 Comments

  1. Thescriptureway

    Posted by Thescriptureway on May 13, 2016 at 18:30

    This is sugar payed lukewarm Christianity. Elohim (God) says transgenderism is wrong and that’s final. Good day to all of y’all. Shalom!

  2. woshigusta

    Posted by woshigusta on November 1, 2015 at 18:26

    I personally have always thought of gender identity like this: Transgender people are put in bodies of a sex that is different from their soul, not because God made a mistake, but because there is something to be gained from the situation. Let’s take Caitlyn for example. She lived her life for a very long time as the incorrect gender, a woman’s soul in a man’s body. When she decided to change her body and life to match her soul, the public attention was tremendous and there was a lot of controversy. Despite being so scrutinized, she went forward with it anyway and used that public attention to bring attention to the violence and unjust treatment that occurs towards transgender people, comfort and inspire those who struggle with their identities. I think this was God’s plan for Caitlyn, to put her a body of the opposite sex and use her transition to help people who are suffering, and help us learn to love each other as God commands. Even in non-public cases of gender identity, perhaps being in a body of the opposite sex helps people overcome internal conflict, or strengthens them in another way. Either way, He doesn’t make mistakes, and always has plans to prosper us, and that is good.

    • theteenfashionista

      Posted by theteenfashionista on March 2, 2016 at 11:39

      Er, I disagree with woshigusta. God has a plan for Caitlyn/Bruce, but that doesn’t mean that he? She? should have gone against God’s intended gender for him/her. People are beautiful creations of God, and to identify themselves as something TOTALLY different from what they really are is not a good thing.

    • sunbluie

      Posted by sunbluie on November 12, 2015 at 12:20

      Sorry, but I disagree. I think he has identity issues.

      • woshigusta

        Posted by woshigusta on November 28, 2015 at 15:45

        And it’s a good thing to have an opinion of your own, even if it is different.👍

  3. Amarah

    Posted by Amarah on October 5, 2015 at 17:25

    Im going to make this clear before i ask a question- I do believe that homosexually and everything related to this argument is a sin just as other sins are sins.

    What is our basis and backing for our beliefs that this is sin, that it is wrong? If we were in a debate about it how could we base our beliefs? There really isnt much in the Bible that says specifically “this is a sin” (homosexuality, transgenderism, gay/lesbian etc) so what is your basis? I encourage you to answer. Thanks guys.

  4. Project Inspired

    Posted by elizey7 on July 5, 2015 at 21:58

    All of you are right when you say God doesn’t make mistakes. If God presents a problem, he leaves you hints (if necessary) to get you to the solution. He presented the problem of gender identity to Caitlyn, and she knew she would not be happy as a man. God wants all of us to be happy. Additionally, there is a ton of science behind transgenderism and gender identity to support that it is within your genes that is causing one to feel more like one gender than another.

  5. Project Inspired

    Posted by GabrielaB on June 15, 2015 at 23:02

    I recently met this woman. She is one of the Godliest people I’ve met and truly special. Everyone should read her story. http://paulastonewilliams.com/

  6. Project Inspired

    Posted by GymnastGirl97 on June 4, 2015 at 19:31

    The first thing that came to my mind when I read this article is that God does not make mistakes. He made you just the way he knew was best. People seem to think that if you disagree with someone, you must hate them, and if you love them, then you accept what they are or what they are doing. while I do not agree with, or support the transgender or homosexual actions some people choose to take, that does not mean that I’m going to be a snob or ignore you. Several people I know talk about how people not willing to accept homosexuality are “close minded” and “haters”. We need to love these people, but not accept what they are doing. If we turn a blind eye, and do not speak up, this will grow and grow, and worse, people will think Christians are OK with it. There has already been persecution of Christian bakeries where a homosexual couple will come in (knowing that it is a Christian business) and ask for a wedding cake. When they refuse, they have their business, their money, and more taken away from them simply because the person feels “offended” and won’t just respect their answer and find another bakery happy to have their money. If I went to a bakery for my wedding cake and the person would not make one because they only wanted to support gay marriages, then I would simply find someone else who is more willing. But still, they are human just like you and me. On a final note from Veggie Tales: God made you special, and he loves you very much.

    • torirose

      Posted by torirose on November 1, 2015 at 07:10

      Amen!

    • Project Inspired

      Posted by elizey7 on July 8, 2015 at 21:07

      Exactly, God made you the way HE knew best. At the time. However, there are transgender people who suffer from gender identity disorder and pray for clarity on where their gender stands. When they don’t get clarity, they choose to identify as gender fluid, and then get persecuted.

  7. Pinkypie2017

    Posted by Pinkypie2017 on June 2, 2015 at 21:54

    Although I don’t agree that him or anyone should change their gender. I half feel for him and the part of the article about something nobody understands really resonated with me. Because I identify as asexual there are different kinds but it basically means feeling no sexual attraction. Personally I’m attracted to guys and I would make out with them but I never want to have sex and I’m not just talking about before marriage I no urge or desire to even after I’m married. I’m thinking about the exception of children but that’s being very comprising mostly because it weird and expensive to have my husband’s sperm put into me surgically. I grew up in a Christian home that is very open about sex so nobody really understands why I don’t want to have sex after marriage, the only one I’ve told is my sister she doesn’t get it but she tries to be supportive. I once casually mentioned it to my dad and he just basically shut me down and said “no Christian man wants to marry a woman that doesn’t have sex if he’s not getting it from you he’ll go somewhere else. But I believe will find someone who will except me and I don’t need to be cured.

    • Project Inspired

      Posted by Lichenut on June 12, 2015 at 16:37

      I think we all have things that we feel no one else can understand, perhaps because of the people we are surrounded by. It reminds me how my family reacts to my decisions. I talk about my life with my mother, and she asks about my social life, how many friends, and if there is anyone special. I tell her I don’t go out much except for work or to run errands. There are some weekends where I don’t even leave my apartment. She reacts poorly to this, shocked that I don’t “come out of my shell, make friends, put myself out there, live life to the fullest.” She and I are both introverts, but where I have accepted this positively, she still believes it to be a negative thing. My more extroverted father and siblings also don’t get it. I don’t hate people or socializing; I just prefer to be alone most of the time.
      Your comment also resonates with me because I feel the same way: attracted to men, but not wanting sex, even in marriage. I haven’t told my family how I feel. I know they won’t respond quite as shockingly as you say you father did. They find absolutely no excuse for adultery; my sister once had a boyfriend who cheated on her, and that did not go over well at all. But I don’t think they would understand either.
      I have a cousin who has sworn that she will never get married, that if God really wants her to get married he will have to figuratively/spiritually smack her upside the head to make her realize it. No one has been outright rude to her about it, but I have heard family members mention in, shaking their heads and rolling their eyes thinking “It’s just a phase; it’ll pass one day.” Even I, when I was younger, thought similarly. But now, I almost feel the same way; not quite so dead set against marriage and all, but still not as preoccupied with it as the rest of my family.
      My indifference to sex has led me to think that I don’t really want to get married. Upon this realization, I remembered Paul’s words in 1 Corinthians 7:8-9 “Now to the unmarried and the widows I say: It is good for them to stay unmarried, as I do. But if they cannot control themselves, they should marry, for it is better to marry than to burn with passion.” Perhaps if I remind my family that Paul was not married, then maybe they might understand.
      But then, there are times when I like the idea of being married and having kids. But I still do not find interest in the matter of sex, and I am rather taken with the idea of adoption as far as children go.
      So I think that if a person, like you or me, who is not very sexually inclined finds someone to love, who loves them in return, and they are open and honest with each other about their feelings, they may reach a mutual understanding that causes a marriage to flourish, however unconventional. Who knows? If there are women who feel as you and I about sex, then it follows that there are men who feel the same as well. Perhaps you will find a man who is on the same page as you are, and he won’t try to “get it elsewhere.”

  8. cowlover

    Posted by cowlover on June 2, 2015 at 21:22

    I agree in part with this article. We need to love everyone. Period. But does love mean accepting and at least seemingly condoning immoral behavior? No. Some love is “Tough Love”. It hurts. Love doesn’t always feel warm and fuzzy. It’s not even a feeling in and of itself. It’s an action. And sometimes that action is standing up for what Jesus said and it might hurt. If you told a compulsive thief that what they were doing was wrong, they wouldn’t be too happy about it. Neither would an adulterer. It hurts me when I get called out for my sins. But if we truly love the Lord, we will repent and ask for forgiveness and the strength to turn from our sins. Not be proud of them.

    And as for the whole “gender identity” situation, C.S. Lewis has made an exceptional, in my opinion, observation in his book “Perelandra”. He is talking about two figures with opposite gender, from the point of view of the main character in the book, Ransom. Here is an excerpt: (it is a difficult reading style, and I apologize for that, but it’s worth it)

    “Both the bodies were naked, and both were free from any sexual characteristics, either primary or secondary. That, one would have expected. But whence came this curious difference between them? He found that he could point to no single feature wherein the difference resided, yet it was impossible to ignore. One could try–Ransom has tried a hundred times–to put it into words. He has said that Malacandra was like rhythm and Perelandra like melody. He has said that Malacandra affected him like a quantitative, Perelandra like an accentual, metre. He thinks that the first held in his hand something like a spear, but the hands of the other were open, with the palms towards him. But I don’t know that any of these attempts has helped me much. At all events what Ransom saw at that moment was the real meaning of gender. Everyone must sometimes have wondered why in nearly all tongues certain inanimate objects are masculine and others feminine. What is masculine about a mountain or feminine about certain trees? Ransom has cured me of believing that this is a purely morphological phenomenon, depending on the form of the word. Still less is gender an imaginative extension of sex. Our ancestors did not make mountains masculine because they projected male characteristics into them. The real process is the reverse. Gender is a reality, and a more fundamental reality than sex. Sex is, in fact, merely the adaptation to organic life of a fundamental polarity which divides all created beings. Female sex is simply one of the things that have feminine gender; there are many others, and Masculine and Feminine meet us on planes of reality where male and female would be simply meaningless. Masculine is not attenuated male, nor feminine attenuated female. On the contrary, the male and female of organic creatures are rather blurred reflections of masculine and feminine. Their reproductive functions, their differences in strength and size, party exhibit, but partly also confuse and misrepresent, the real polarity. All this Ransom saw, as it were, with his own eyes. The two white creatures were sexless. But he of Malacandra was masculine (not male); she of Perelandra was feminine (not female).”

    • Project Inspired

      Posted by elizey7 on July 10, 2015 at 14:57

      So you’re taking the “tough love” approach. Alright. Just remember that while you are doing that, there is a GIRL named Leelah Alcorn up there who committed suicide because of responses like yours

  9. cowlover

    Posted by cowlover on June 2, 2015 at 20:57

    jnotemusic14 – I love your comment. You pretty much summed up my reaction to this article. I believe he was coming from the right place, but it comes across as saying that we should accept things like this. I think people forget the New Testament references to sexual sins, such as homosexuality, and like to say that the only place it’s mentioned is in the Old Testament laws, which as Christians are not laws for us to follow. So again, I just wanted to thank you for standing up for what you believe in even though it’s not very popular these days. 🙂

  10. Aryandil

    Posted by Aryandil on June 2, 2015 at 20:05

    Thank you, Project Inspired. Finally, someone Christian gets it. It doesn’t mean that we have to accept transgender as being right, but we can’t go all honk-honk “you’re a sinner and a danger to our kids” kind of thing. I knew a gay person once and he was one of the kindest people I’ve ever met. Talk about danger. 😛

  11. Project Inspired

    Posted by GuardGirl05 on June 2, 2015 at 20:02

    Calling someone a sinner doesn’t condemn them, I don’t think. Considering that everyone except Jesus has sinned. It’s not like homosexuality or transgenderness will make anyone go to hell.

    I do believe that we are all loved and created in the image of God and are all equal and deserve to be treated that way. I’m just not sure how to approach this… I don’t know any transgender people personally, so the only thing I can do is pray for people I know about and generally for people who are struggling with it.

  12. Project Inspired

    Posted by Gymnastics14 on June 2, 2015 at 18:06

    Thank you, Project Inspired, for sharing this. I believe homosexuality/ being transgender/ etc. Is wrong,but I’m tired of the attitude of condemnation. I think if they ask our opinion on the issue we should share it . Kindly. However, we should treat them kindly and not as less as a person.

  13. martial_artist_for_Jesus

    Posted by martial_artist_for_Jesus on June 2, 2015 at 18:06

    Again, as with the homosexuality issue, love the sinner, hate the sin. I was surfing around on facebook about a week ago, and came across this on one of my fave linked sites, and I think it’s completely relevant to the issue of transgenderism, how we should approach it, and what it really going on. As the author states, when he temporarily “changed” genders he didn’t really do anything; he was still a man. The link clears up a LOT of confusion: https://www.lifesitenews.com/opinion/i-was-a-transgender-woman

  14. Project Inspired

    Posted by haleyephelps on June 2, 2015 at 16:39

    IM IN LOVE WITH THIS!!!! While I do believe that God makes no mistakes, people go way too far. Many Christians give off a very negative vibe on the issue, which scares others away from the faith. Bruce Jenner was created by God to be a man. A MAN. But the fact that he chose to become a woman is something we will never understand. Each person’s journey with the Lord.
    The best we can do is love him and pray for him just as we do every other human being.
    GREAT ARTICLE!

  15. jnotemusic14

    Posted by jnotemusic14 on June 2, 2015 at 13:58

    Most people already know my stance on this because I responded on the homosexuality article. If you don’t you should really go back and read my responses. But all I can say is; wow. I’m so sick and tired of the church and Christians accepting this kind of stuff. And to say it doesn’t matter about what’s biblical and what’s not? That is totally wrong. It COMPLETELY matters what is biblical and what is not. If it didn’t, then why are you even posting on this site? Apparently that one scripture that you quoted (out of context, by the way, because it doesn’t just talk about a woman it talks about a man wearing woman’s clothing as well. Nice try, though) doesn’t matter, because who cares if something is biblical or not biblical, right?

    As for not being rude to them? I agree with that part. We shouldn’t be hateful or downright cruel to them, but we shouldn’t be quiet about it either. If they bring it up and ask if it’s wrong, what are you going to say? “Oh well, God loves you anyway so who cares?” Absolutely not. WE ARE NOT SUPPOSED TO SUPPORT THIS. I’m so tired of everyone thinking that living a Christian life is just going to be all about warm fuzzies and making Jesus look like some hippie, and that you can go and sin whenever and you’ll still get saved. You can’t just go around willingly sinning and still expect to get into heaven. Now, it’s a different story if you are sinning in ignorance and you repent and ask for forgiveness. But if you just continue to sin willfully, you’re in a bad spot.

    As for not talking about it, what are Christians supposed to do? Just leave them in the dark and risk their salvation? We aren’t supposed to support it, but we aren’t supposed to tell them we don’t support it either? We can’t just go parading around with transgenders and homosexuals acting like we support it.

    And we are showing love by telling them that it’s wrong, because if we don’t tell them that it’s wrong than that would be selfish. It would be keeping them in the darkness of sin. Now it’s a different story if you tell them and they continue in their sin. Then it’s not your problem. But we can’t just keep them in the dark.

    Stop giving people the impression that it’s okay to support it, or that it’s okay to not say anything about it. I understand that we shouldn’t be cruel and rude, but we shouldn’t just hide what the bible says and support it either.

    (Sorry I didn’t quote any scriptures, but if you go back to the homosexual article where I responded, those scriptures pretty much apply here too.)

    • Project Inspired

      Posted by elizey7 on July 11, 2015 at 11:59

      Ok. It completely matters what is biblical and what is not. Well, the bible doesn’t mention anything about transgendered people. So why not accept them?

    • VioletRogue

      Posted by VioletRogue on June 2, 2015 at 18:15

      I completely agree with you. Turning a blind eye helps nothing.

    • Lace and Thunder

      Posted by Lace and Thunder on June 2, 2015 at 18:12

      I have many friends who are homosexual or bisexual and one friend who is questioning their gender identity. The first time one of my close friends told me she liked girls I told her that I didn’t believe it was right, and I believed that the Bible states it’s sinful. I made it clear that I didn’t support her choices. However, I also told her that all sin is equal in God’s eyes and I am sinful too. And most importantly I let her know that it doesn’t matter what she does, I will never stop loving her and neither will God. This was the way I felt that Jesus would respond. We have to love and embrace the LGBTQ community as our friends and brothers and sisters in Christ by presenting them with both the law and the gospel presented to us in scriptures. We must respect their choices and love them in spite of them. That means using preferred pronouns and names for those who are transgender or questioning their gender identity.

      In short, I think you’re right. We have to tell them they’re wrong. But we can do this respectfully and lovingly.

    • martial_artist_for_Jesus

      Posted by martial_artist_for_Jesus on June 2, 2015 at 18:08

      I agree completely.

      (P.S., BTW, LOVE ur profile pic on here…. I’m a Pokegeek, myself XD )

    • Groundhog

      Posted by Groundhog on June 2, 2015 at 17:15

      Hi jnotemusic14! At least for me, I don’t think that’s what Dave was trying to say. He didn’t say that it doesn’t matter if something is unbiblical or not. Of course, I agree that it’s wrong to say so, but I think he meant it’s not helpful to tell someone that they’re sinning and nothing else. You need to think a little through their perspective, or else for most people, at least, it’s hard to have compassion for them. About the quote he mentioned, he said himself that it isn’t about transgender. He said, “We can point to scripture such as Deuteronomy 22:5 and quickly realize that this passage isn’t specifically about ‘this’…” He also goes on to say it IS out of context.
      I don’t think he was telling us to keep silent or accept it. From my interpretation, he was just saying not to be cruel. There’s a fine line between telling them in love and just telling them, an honestly, I don’t think I’m doing that good of a job (this is NOT an implication that you aren’t).
      God bless!

      (sorry if there’s something below this, this machine glitched out)

      I also don’t think he was saying to support it or keep silent.

    • McKayla Denise

      Posted by McKayla Denise on June 2, 2015 at 17:12

      I’m in 1000% agreement! Couldn’t have said it better myself. I’m also so so so sick of hearing “accept everyone! Everyone has an opinion” but yet if I disagree I’m shunned. Not accepted. My opinion suddenly means nothing if it doesn’t agree with basically something Biblically wrong and immoral. It’s stupid and ridiculous. I refuse to accept sin and that’s that.

      • McKayla Denise

        Posted by McKayla Denise on June 2, 2015 at 17:14

        Sorry didn’t make that clear. I’m 1000% in agreement with jnotemusic14. Not the article.

    • Project Inspired

      Posted by eringobraugh771 on June 2, 2015 at 16:29

      Hey thanks for sharing! You’re very right in that loving people doesn’t mean condoning or ignoring sin. God is love and that doesn’t mean that right and wrong don’t matter, but quite the opposite; He is infinitely bigger and more real and important than us and our struggles. Even in that He loves us so deeply and pursues us, but we must remember that we’re not most important, and our feelings and opinions or preferences are not above God, He is the Lord. He is good, and we must go to Him to know what’s good and real. So yes, I agree with you on these things.

      However, what I think we lose sight of in discussing these issues is that what Jesus wants most for these people is that they come to know Him, that they are saved by faith, not their actions. People struggling with sexuality and identity are indeed struggling. We are all born sinners, and we are all more prone to different kinds of sin and brokenness. These people are struggling with very real attractions and confusion, and want a sense of clarity and belonging. Most know very well that the Bible says homosexuality (and other distortions of sexuality) is wrong and that’s one of the few things they know about God; they don’t want to go to Hell, but they don’t know of any way to deal with their struggles and want to live a good, sane life like anyone else, so they go to those will accept them and adapt to their preferences. But we need to show them the gospel; that we are all broken and in need of a savior, not one of us can handle our own sin, and Jesus is the only way to life and freedom. Grace is one-way love that makes the first move. Gay people and those struggling with sexuality in other forms can come to know Jesus in the midst of their struggles and temptations to the same sex and even after a sex change; nothing can stop His love and grace, and remember, no one can handle their sin on their own- so they cannot “clean up their act” before knowing Jesus. When we believe and receive Jesus, He changes us forever. This doesn’t mean that every person struggling with sexuality that comes to know Jesus will stop having attraction to the same sex and sexual struggles immediately, if they ever entirely stop experiencing them; but they get to live in freedom and not enslaved by their struggles, being loved by Him and loving Him, living for Him- as we were all made to, knowing that one day He will come back and make all things new.

      We need to make Jesus supreme in these conversations. No one will ever be able to change and be free from their pain and confusion unless they know Him first.

      • jnotemusic14

        Posted by jnotemusic14 on June 2, 2015 at 18:34

        @Groundhog No, you conveyed your point perfectly. And yes, it may seem that way, but he referenced the homosexuality article. The homosexuality article continued to say things that indicated to me that we should keep silent about it and not “condemn” in other words. But telling them in a kind way is by no means condemning, it’s saving. You know what I mean? I apologize if I’m getting the wrong impression from the article. It’s just that Christians are accepting it so much these days, it’s hard to tell who’s supporting it and who’s not. Also, for the out of context thing, I was saying HE was taking it out of context by saying that it was being taken out of context, because he said that it was talking about women wearing armor, but it talked about boys wearing girls’ clothes as well. 🙂

        @eringobraugh771 I get what you’re saying, I really do. But I think it’s a common misconception that people can just continue sinning willfully and get away with it just because they “know Jesus”. For example, Matthew 7:21 says;

        “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.”

        It’s our job as Christians to help those, yes, but living the Christian life is tough, and being a Christian isn’t just a free ticket to sin because “we’re forgiven”. We need to truly repent (and by repent I mean turn away from our sin and ask for forgiveness). That isn’t to say we won’t stumble and fall, but we need to turn away from willfully sinning and using Jesus as a ticket to keep on sinning. 🙂