I like you, am not sure either. But here is where I am at right now. Feel free to comment or disagree, because I too struggle to find that balance between upholding the truth but also doing so without alienating people. Especially knowing all the struggles and challenges people with gender dysphoria experience.
If I run into someone who I am unsure is male or female… obviously I would go with their preferred pronoun. I think that would be the charitable thing to do; to take them as they are in good faith.
For those that I know have transitioned… If you refer to transgender people by their names to avoid the pronouns… do you insist on calling Bob Barbara?
I don’t think it is unreasonable to call them by their preferred new name. After all, if Barbara changes her name to Betty, would I object? What about Blake (a unisex name)?
That said, I try to minimize my use of pronouns in these situations to avoid confusion. But when needed, I tend to go with a person’s preferred pronouns, as long as the request is reasonable- she, he, etc… “God” is not a reasonable pronoun to me; neither are many of the made-up pronouns that are not words in the English language.
I don’t do this because I agree with gender theory, but because insisting on calling someone by another name or referring to them with another pronoun really isn’t an effective way to debate gender theory or bring people to truth; it often comes across as spiteful and really just closes off any possibility for conversation. When it comes up in conversation, I will also explain my views and that my disagreement is not done out of hatred or ideological argument, but concern for a person.
I think it’s most important to not forget that at the end of the day, the focus isn’t merely about proclaiming the truth, it is about proclaiming truth to people in a loving way. People with gender dysphoria are people just like anyone else, who are often really hurting and facing struggles. I remind myself that I’m not just trying to make a point, but doing so for another’s well-being.
It’s not a perfect analogy, but there are many other situations in life where similar reasoning applies. Premarital sex is wrong, but that doesn’t mean I am going to refuse to acknowledge an expecting couple as parents or give them support. To friends with gay parents, I am not going to refuse to refer to both of their parents as dads. To friends with phobias (not saying that having phobias is a sin- I had many, but it is a mental health issue like gender dysphoria), acknowledging their fear isn’t the same as saying it is reasonable.