My career trajectory over the last four years has my dad doing a lot of hand wringing. I've gone from working as an aide for James Dobson, to ministering to male prostitutes, to making café lattes at a Chicago coffee shop. But even that path seems normal considering that once, 12 years ago, I went from serving in media relations at the National Organization for Women, to serving in media relations at Focus on the Family. Translation: I swallowed the culture and spit out a feminist worldview; then, within a short period, I swallowed the culture and spit out a conservative Christian worldview. Needless to say, I've wrestled fiercely with worldview and faith.

My job as a barista puts me smack dab in the "real world"—which to me, means not defending an abortion clinic, leading nonviolent civil-disobedience trainings, stalking an anti-abortion activist at 3 A.M., or writing a news release on "Banned Books Week" (or Lorena Bobbitt). Nor is it stepping into a college auditorium knowing that my story of coming to Christ and out of homosexuality could elicit tears, laughter, ridicule, and even protests.

With a history like this, pulling perfect shots of espresso and steaming pitchers of milk are middle-ground activities.

The Coffee-Shop Grind

Janet is a coffee-shop regular. She's a brilliant writer, and her warmth and dry humor remind me of my good friend Kathy in Colorado Springs. Janet is also a lesbian.

For weeks now, she has suggested that we exchange writing assignments (and spend time hanging out). From the moment she made the proposal, I've thought "bad idea"—especially since one of my most recent projects was writing nine articles for Focus on the Family on being married to a gay spouse. My manager at the coffee ...

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