It was 1974 and I was 13-years-old when I discovered Elton John. He was my first superstar crush. I loved his music and his outrageous costumes and his flamboyant personality.
I bought teen magazines like Tiger Beat and 16 Magazine. I cut out his pictures and plastered them all over my bedroom wall. The first album I owned was Crocodile Rock, a hand-me-down from my friend’s brother. I played that album over and over and over again as I sat in the dark in my bedroom.
I’m sure my parents thought there was something wrong with me. When they criticized him I fiercely defended him and often said I would grow up and marry him. My dad called him a fruitcake (his words not mine) and I vehemently disagreed. My dad understood nothing about my beloved Elton.
I was about 16, alone with my Dad in the car, travelling down the highway when the radio newscaster announced that Elton John was gay.
“Uh-huh, I knew it!” my dad said.
“I don’t care. I’m going to marry him anyway,” I retorted.
I was disgusted that I had to find out at the same time as my dad. It was kismet, I guess. Looking back it seems odd that I didn’t notice that he was gay. All the signs were there.
It’s interesting and a little sad that as we get older we label people. If you’re not like me than you must be this or that. Oh, to be young and accepting of everyone we meet regardless of race, colour, religion or sexual orientation.
As a Christian, Christ has called us to love one another as He loved us. No labels, no rules, just love. What a standard to live up to and what a wonderful world it would be if we loved each other as He loves us.
I wonder if that’s why I often have the blues. Living in a world that feels barren of love at times. Trying to be loving and always falling short. It disturbs me that my heart can be so cold and stoney.
Some would say that if I love Jesus there isn’t room for Elton. I disagree. What does Jesus do? He loves all of us unconditionally. With the heart of Jesus there is room for everyone including Elton.