The F Word Part 2

The F Word Part 2
First off, let me say how much I appreciate the encouraging comments—it means a lot, more than I can explain. It’s a bit strange laying out the most intimate parts of your life for strangers to comment on when my parents have no clue.

The comments have started to degrade into he should find a gay friendly church vs. homosexuality is a sin vs. oh no it’s not! 

First, I’m not the ambassador of the gay community or the Christian gay community; my story is unique as all our stories are. I’m not here to advocate for anything other than being merciful and kind to those who struggle with this sin because for some reason it’s taken more heat and generated more fear than most.

Second, all of us who struggle with homosexuality have this agreed upon silence. We have become members of the fraternity of the Hidden and because of the masks required, we do not know who is a fellow brother or sister. We cannot see each other because we have learned to be invisible.

READ: The F Word – Part 1

Now some have said, “Be brave, come out! We will accept and love you.” And that’s great—honestly, it is—but most of us are not ready to live a life of Fight Club. We do not want our lives to be full of conflict and fear. What if we sign up to watch the kids in the nursery? What if we help out at youth group? Join the basketball league and have to share a locker room? We have to be ready for a punch to the face at a moment’s notice, figuratively and sometimes literally.

We have to be ready to don our leper robes and ring a bell, “Unclean. Unclean.”

And this is such a small part of our lives—as my friends will tell you I struggle with pride and anger much more than homosexuality.

Sometimes I’ll come out to someone and they will say, “I know the perfect woman for you. Let me set you up.” Let me just say—if dating the opposite sex helped us not struggle with homosexuality, eHarmony would be bursting at the seams.

But this division, churches who are involved in the gay culture and cheer and then those who think that part of your life “course” is to get married, have two kids, and a house is both a sham and not the purpose of the Church. I’m not saying either is bad, but it’s not the Bride. Once a church centers itself around anything but Christ, it’s counterfeit.

So I lead this celibate life and I invest it into the church and my friends. I’m available to help you move and see a movie whenever you’d like. I travel a bit and attend conferences. I’ve lived overseas and I have a full, full life. I do come home to an empty apartment and I will not be anyone’s first choice. But I’m Jesus’ first choice. And I know Him. So while yes, I’m broken, I’m redeemed as well.

I ask that we not stand on our hermeneutics and shout. I ask that we do not point and say how others should do this or should do that or that we demand how someone gay should behave—can we just not throw stones?  What I ask is to love those, gay or not, who are on the periphery, the outskirts, and the fringe and be their friend.

If you are wondering, how to find people like me in your sphere of influence, here’s how:

First, be very open so that you wouldn’t care if a person was gay, you’d love them. And love them because God loves them, not because they are gay, or think they are gay, or this or that. When we love for a reason that is not because God loves them, we tend to have these variations of acceptance and then it just gets complicated.

Second, challenge the negative gay bashing talk. “Hey, that’s not cool. People I love are gay.” When people challenge me on this, I say, “OK, next time you pray, use the word you just used in talking to God.” That clears up the situation real quick.

Third, if someone tells you that they are gay, let them talk it out. And when they are done, look them in the eye and say, “I’m not going anywhere. I’m not telling anyone. I’m your friend and I love you.” It’s what I hope to hear when I tell someone.

Fourth, you’ll have a million questions. Maybe ask two. And when you get together, don’t make every time some kind of Oprah Q and A. We will tell you as it comes up.

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Five, just love us. Invite us over. In a marriage-based church culture, where couples get together, single people are left kind of on the margin. We like restaurants and movies; we like your kids. We will help with dishes. We go home to an empty apartment; we like the warmth of your place.

Related: It is Time for the American Christian Church to Surrender the Gay Marriage Fight, Apologize & Share Love – by Ian Ebright

Hug us often and don’t interpret it as anything other than a hug. Celibacy is a hard road for the sake of the cross. Human contact is a rare treat.

So share my story if you’d like. People need to know that we are out there. We serve communion, and we pass the offering plate. We play on your basketball league (We crush you. Be aware of that.) We are your friends, or at least we want to be.

Know this: Christ loves us. You. Me. And I long for the day when I look back at this life in His Kingdom and laugh a bit; I’ll laugh at the foolishness of it all and that it won’t be like that anymore. And all of us, we’ll gather for awhile. I’ll shake your hand. I’ll give you a hug. We will know each other deeply.

And one day we get this white stone with a new name on it. A new name. A name only God knows. (Rev 2:17) And all the other names, even the one on my driver’s license melts away.

So if anything, this thorn I have makes me a better friend, more loyal. And it makes me long for Jesus and for home.

[Thank you to Adam McLane and Jon Huckins for encouraging me to do this. I am in your debt.]

**This post is published anonymously at the request of the author

A portion of this article originally appeared on adammclane.com

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  • http://twitter.com/PaulKemp_sey Paul Kemp

    I don’t know whether physically expressed homosexuality is or is not a sin and, frankly, I don’t much care. I do know that the Bible is full of narrative that points us to the sinfulness of excluding/othering those ‘not like us’ from our love and care. And I do know that the core of the gospel is an inclusive one, not an exclusive one. And I do know that, for every proof text used by those who engage in pro-gay/anti-gay polemics, there are hundreds that talk about God’s desire for social justice and demanding that God’s people care for the poor, for life’s ‘failures/failed’ for refugees and those who are not part of our circle. So, for God’s sake – and your own salvation – listen to what this brave and honest guy talks about and start to love instead of hating.

    • Eddie

      Well, also frankly, it is a sin. well, if you don’t care if you or someone else sins, then that is another story, I can say you have no love for someone who rushes to go to hell. Yes, you are right in saying the Gospel is inclusive, but be careful here, don’t mislead people. God is an inclusive God, He always wanted the Gentiles together with Jews, but they should all undergo a regeneration process which we call to be born again (or from above).

      This author is wording ideas coherently, and is quite crafty with his language, he does not want to stir people up, but he is misleading people as well.

      I don;t know why, but it seems to me a tone of proud triumphalism. As if he would say. You see, we are like everybody else, and even better. Then he boasts with taking Communion. I wouldn’t boast with taking Communion lightly. You know what, because I love you I am taking the time to write this. Be very careful – listen to God here – 1 Cor 11:27 – “whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty concerning the body and blood of the Lord.” Would like that instead of repenting???? Think wisely. Leave the silly controversies and the politics. There is a lot of politics involved I know, for GLBT have people in high places. Leave all that and think of JEsus who is the Judge. How can you admit you are gay and then say “And I long
      for the day when I look back at this life in His Kingdom and laugh a
      bit; I’ll laugh at the foolishness of it all and that it won’t be like
      that anymore.” Are you talking of the Kingdom of God???? then read that NOTHING impure will enter the Kingdom, which is also in Revelation. Not my sin, nor yours. If you are washed by the blood of Jesus, then sin no more and you proved it. If you are unchanged (see the parable of the great banquet where one of the people invited had no wedding garments) you will be out. And that applies to any of us. Paul says test yourselves if you are in the faith. Otherwise you will be like a miscarried baby. May God prevent it from happening to any of us. I know it’s difficult, but that is the Word of God. I cannot change it. It’s hard for me too…. I have my own areas of weakness you see. That’s valid for all.

      • katy

        Matthew 7:15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

      • gtrj0527

        Struggling with a sin (being an addict of any sort, homosexuality, abusiveness) is NOT the same as committing the sin. When we turn it over to Christ, He gives us the ability to resist and turn away. It is impossible to sin no more, especially after we are saved. Satan sets out to turn us away and make poor examples of us all the time. Don’t condemn this author of this article for struggling. I’d be a much more joyful person if I would turn my sin to God every day and not commit it even though I wanted to.

  • Corinne

    Wow. Thank you for sharing. Your articles are so powerful and I’m sorry for all the pain that members of the body of Christ have put you through. I have a question: do you feel that a celibate lifestyle is what all Christian gays should strive for or is this just a personal choice of yours temporarily or permanently?

  • http://www.facebook.com/sforesman1954 Scott Foresman

    ” I’m not here to advocate for anything other than being merciful and kind to those who struggle with this sin…” It is NOT a sin to be gay.

    • http://www.facebook.com/maryn.tompkins Maryn Tompkins

      I caught that too. How can it be a sin to be yourself?

      • http://www.facebook.com/edejarnett Elliott DeJarnett

        The bible teaches that we are all born sinners. It’s in our nature as fallen people to have sinful tendencies of all kinds not just sexual. When we are redeemed through Christ we are transformed into his likeness and saved out of our fallen nature. So we can’t justify what we do by saying we’re being ourselves. Being “ourselves” is not license to do whatever we feel like doing or we feel is right. The conversation goes deeper than that as relates to this issue I know but that’s the tip of the iceberg on why some would say just cause something feels natural it still may be a sin.

        • http://www.facebook.com/maryn.tompkins Maryn Tompkins

          Thank you for your reply. I am agnostic, so have a LOT of trouble with this whole sin thing, as it pertains to the bible. To me, the sin is the (perceived) judgment and intolerance of his church and family, and the patronizing/self-righteous attitude of many of the comments.

          • Sarah

            Christian here that is in complete agreement with what Elliot said. And you are right, “the (perceived) judgment and intolerance of his church and family, and the patronizing/self-righteous attitude of many” is absolutely a sin. In my opinion, it is the greatest sin the Church is committing today. This sin is the reason this author wants to remain anon.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1034944590 Gretchen Olsen-Jacobsen

        every saint has a past, every sinner a future.

    • Eddie

      You are in deep confusion, ‘friend’. Read Romans 1:18-26, please. Let God speak to you. Let us be silent and let God speak.

  • Eric Masters

    Thanks again for sharing, I hope this makes people pause when they open their mouth about this subject. I know I will.

  • Tim Chastain

    Hello Anon, thank you for sharing this post; it is very helpful to me. As an advocate of gay equality and also acceptance of gay Christians, I appreciate your insight into how to better relate to gay friends.

  • Frank

    Once again what a wonderful example of sow web who trusts God and his perfect plan for sexuality and marriage. Lets all do a better job at accepting people who struggle with this and who choose to not engage in sinful behavior.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003507967305 Neal Lindberg

    By the same Anon from Adam McClane’s website:
    “Now, to respond to some comments.

    Some of you have called me courageous, but that’s because I have outstanding friendships in my life.

    Some of you have said you’ve cried and I say thank you. I cry too.

    HisOwn: Your story saddens me, makes me stumble like the earth is giving way. You have to tell someone. Tell your best friend. I pray you find some solace, my friend. And I pray that with clench fists, eyes shut, gathering all my will for that prayer.

    Jeffery Dick asked why I don’t join a church would be fine with me being openly gay. You see, I can’t come out publicly because my parents would lose it. Trust me. My dad majored in beating up gay men in the military. It was his thing. So I can’t really come out. I also have a job where it would create complications.

    The second reason is I need to be in a place where I can do the hard work of changing the minds of those around me. If we all ditch the churches who don’t really care for us, then the gulf between us becomes wider. I’m not called to comfort. Good question. Gold star.

    Because you have to understand, I can manage the same-sex attraction part. I’m older now, a bit older. It’s easier.

    However, you can’t manage the isolation, the fear and dread of someone finding out and losing that relationship. You see, we, the Strugglers, the Forever Singles don’t get a family. The hardest part is not being someone’s first. You married people out there, your spouse picked you. You are their first priority.

    We Strugglers don’t have that luxury. We are an afterthought, the Eternal Third Wheel. Our loneliness is our miry pit.

    I’m a member of a church that has a denominational leader who is actively offensive in this area. You’ve heard of this person.

    I have friends in the church who know, all the pastors, and they are fine with it. They have no problem me being a leader or preaching.

    I’m pretty good at preaching. I once scored a 9.2 when they held up the cards at the end. The Russian judge gave me a 7.6. (I figured we need a bit of levity).”

    • DrewTwoFish

      Anon: Boy, do I know where you’re coming from. I find it hard to understand why you remain in a denomination where the leader is “actively offensive in this area.” I imagine that the support that your home church supersedes that but yikes…

  • DrewTwoFish

    Charming. I see that the usual players are already trumpeting their position on the sinfulness of homosexuality yet again, diverting focus from the church’s failure to love those on the fringes. Is anybody actually listening to to Anon? It’s no wonder so many gay Christians or other starving souls have left the church behind.

    • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

      So often, it seems we’re more interested in being right than in doing the work of Jesus. In the words of Elwood P. Dowd (from the play/movie Harvey): Years ago my mother used to say to me, she’d say, “In this world, Elwood, you must be” – she always called me Elwood – “In this world,
      Elwood, you must be oh so smart or oh so pleasant.” Well, for years I was smart. I recommend pleasant. You may quote me.

      Not that the work of Jesus is exclusively found in “being pleasant,” but the sentiment is still the same, that we sacrifice Jesus for the sake of being right, winning an argument.

      • Frank

        The work of Jesus:

        18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.(B) 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations,(C) baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,(D) 20 and teaching(E) them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you(F) always, to the very end of the age.”(G) – Matthew 28

        The work of Jesus starts with Gods truth. Without there can be no work of Jesus.

        • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

          You picked a poor passage to prove that point, since the only truth in that particular passage is Jesus, the Truth, who asks his disciples to teach others to obey the commands of that same Truth. And what are these commands? Matthew 22:37-40, Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

          Now explain how giving up on those commands to win an argument is doing the work of Jesus.

          • Frank

            There is nothing loving about supporting, condoning, affirming, celebrating or remaining silent about sinful behavior.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            The fact that you jump so quickly to your argument rhetoric proves (a) that you aren’t listening to me, and (b) that you aren’t listening to Jesus’ words from Matthew – either the words that I posted, or the words that you posted. There is nothing loving about ignoring people (made in the image and likeness of God) in your quest to win an argument.

          • Frank

            Its not my fault that you equate human tolerance for Godly love.

            Gods love is much more profound and powerful than to allow people to stay where they are. You sell God short.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            “Its not my fault that you equate human tolerance for Godly love.” More evidence that you’re so eager to win an argument that you aren’t paying any attention to what’s being said – I said no such thing. Dispense with the strawmen and learn to love your neighbor as yourself – that means that you must begin by treating people as actual people and not just foils to your argument.

          • Frank

            I am loving people as God demonstrated. I would not be loving them if I encouraged them to sin. So sorry you have trouble understanding that truth. One day maybe.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            Camels are not fish, Frank. I’m sorry you have so much trouble understanding basic biology. One day, maybe.

            …or, in less sarcastic terms, respond to what I’ve actually said, not what you wish I had said. It makes discussions much more productive.

          • Frank

            I did. You just don’t like the answer. You just want to define love on your own terms. Which is fine as long as you realize that.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            *sigh* Fine, Frank. Since you would rather argue with your strawman, go right ahead. But I am not going to partake. Let me know how it turns out, okay? I want to know how badly fake me gets destroyed.

          • Frank

            Is everyone else as confused as I am as to exactly what this guys point is?

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            If you’re confused, you can go back and actually read what I’ve said, and take it as what it is, rather than trying to shoehorn it into what you want it to be. That should help.

          • Frank

            How about you clearly articulate your point in sentence or two? Because I have reread what youj wrote and what I wrote and what I wrote is on point.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            Gladly. What I said was that too many people are so eager to win arguments that they stop following Jesus. No more, no less. You quickly determined (in a move that still baffles me) that this meant that I believe in affirming and condoning sinful behavior, and you never returned from that false path. Which, interestingly, proved my point, as your behavior was that of someone too interested in “winning” to actually pay attention to anything else.

            To put it a different way that is relevant specifically to this original post: there are people who oppose homosexuality and those who support it, both, who are so dedicated to shouting their stance from the mountaintops that they ignore the reality, that homosexual men and women are people and not merely abstractions. We silence their voices to speak for or against them.

          • Frank

            Thanks for the clarification. Yet as I reread your posts it seems you should take your own advice. I am not here to win an argument but you seem to be.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            “I am not here to win an argument but you seem to be.” You gleaned that from my regular attempts to get you to respond to what I wrote, rather than what I had never said?

          • Frank

            I did respond. As I said you just didn’t like my response.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            …and just like that, we’re back in the loop. Even after my clarification, you don’t see how your responses have nothing to do with what I was saying. So have fun with the strawmen, Frank. They’re the only ones who will be humoring you.

          • Frank

            As I said you should take your own advice. You need it.

          • Taylor

            Any discussions w/ Frank = vicious cycle. It just so happens this Anon’s chosen to deal w/ his sexuality in a way that aligns w/ Frankie’s beliefs. Anon wants acceptance from his conservative church, given his conservative “moral choice.” Instead, Frankie uses his conservative choice to argue. Low. Frankie’s comments r only appropriate if the post is about the morality of homosexuality, which it’s not.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            Funny enough, I was considering saying something similar to you in your own discussion with Frank, about how Frank’s remarkable ability to miss the point made extended arguments worthless. I suppose my desire to find the best in people leads me into foolishness, engaging past the point of reason. I had planned on just not engaging Frank any more, but then he went and responded to me, and like a fool I bit. Funny, though, that he accuses me of only wanting to win an argument when he was the one who insisted on starting this whole debacle… but I shouldn’t place blame. It takes two to tango.

          • Taylor

            Hi-5, bro! I sincerely appreciate ur wisdom.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            :-P Hi-5! Now if only I was as good at following my own advice… Frank got that much right, although which advice I need help with he got entirely wrong

          • Frank

            Morality always come into play. Anon understands this. If only everyone else did.

          • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

            There is nothing loving about so completely removing a person’s humanity that you can’t even be bothered to respond to the things they are actually saying.

        • http://www.facebook.com/daniel.olson.522 Daniel Olson

          At the risk of sounding like a hypocrite let me say to Frank and all: In order for us to go and make disciples, we must become involved in peoples lives directly and in a very personal manner. We must share each others burdens, and confess our weaknesses. i don’t want someone to make excuses for surrendering to my weakness, or allow me to make excuses for it either. But I DO want someone who will demonstrate to me that they understand my weaknesses and won’t make me feel inferior when I do fail. This person could not POSSIBLY be someone with whom I only interact online. What do they know of my struggle? of my life in general? Only what they have seen or read in a line, or at most, a few insufficient paragraphs.

          Making disciples also doesn’t mean we should swing our “swords” around willy nilly cutting off any ear, or arm that may be reaching out for understanding. The word is a scalpel used by the Spirit for surgery. When employed correctly, it doesn’t cut out more than needs to be cut out, yet manages to remove all that needs to be disposed of at that particular time. Love is OFTEN verbally silent in the presence of sin, not out of condoning, but out of patience. If God were to point ALL of our sin out to us at once, surely we could not hope to recover. Sometimes love is verbally silent in the presence of sin because we understand that we do not have authority, as in when we don’t stand up and correct a pastor or teacher when they say something we are certain is scripturally inaccurate. We love, therefor we find the right time and the right place to bring truth. YES> Love does correct, rebuke, encourage and admonish. But if speaking the truth was, in itself, inseparable from love, the scripture would not have been written: “speaking the truth IN love”. I know for myself if I don’t speak the truth *in love*, its usually not long before I’m not even speaking truth anymore. My attitude must ALWAYS be to seek and encourage reconciliation. Every time my motive is only to win an argument, even if I am 100% positive I am right, it is not love, and there i go again being a noisy clanging racket.

          • Frank

            Thank you!

          • DrewTwoFish

            Wow. Beautiful, Daniel. Thank you.

          • 22044

            Thanks, Daniel.

    • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

      …did my reply disappear? That’s unfortunate…

  • Ford1968

    Dear Anonymous -
    With due respect, these two phrases contradict one another:

    “…all of us who struggle with homosexuality have this agreed upon silence. We have become members of the fraternity of the Hidden and because of the masks required…”

    “…but most of us are not ready to live a life of Fight Club. We do not want our lives to be full of conflict and fear.”

    You have opted for internal conflict and fear – fear of rejection, fear of further isolation and loneliness, resignation to a life in the dark and lonely closet – rather than external conflict with a community you love.

    How can anyone truly care about you and your needs if they don’t know you? How can you truly establish deep relationships with others when you can’t be honest about this essential part of who you are?

    I’ve been where you are now; so I have a very good idea of what your life is like. I hear such pain in your writing. You deserve better. Your words reflect a toxic atmosphere where you have to choose limited relationships over honesty and integrity. You words reflect a deep longing to be fully known and connected.

    I profoundly disagree with you about the sinfulness of covenant, same-sex relationships; if you read previous comments, you know how damaging and abusive I deem traditional views to be (a point underscored perfectly by both of your posts). Regardless of our theological disagreement, I hope we could agree on this – the closet is not a place where anyone should have to live. That is true bondage, and you are being shackled there by your faith community. That’s not OK. I encourage you to get out. You are staying in an abusive relationship with your church.

    I hold you in my prayers.
    Ford

    • OldSchoolProgressive

      Ford, I understand your identification. I have some of the same feelings and I have to work through them. Being in the closet, struggling with the question of sin (is it? isn’t it?), and shedding tears over scriptures that hurt and words from those I trusted that hurt. The closet is one of the scariest of places.

      I also think that those of us who have made the choice to “come out” and who have worked to integrate acceptance of our sexual identities with our Christian identities should be careful about auditing or policing a brother’s/sister’s decision to stay closeted. Instead, let’s continue to dismantle those who make and provide shelter in the closets.

      (Edited for formatting)

      • Ford1968

        If there was any shade of “blame the victim” in my response, that was completely unintended. I think that a public discussion based on a public blog post in a Christian community is well within bounds and not policing other’s decisions.

        For the record, it took me a very long time to summon the courage to come out – and I too know just how soul-crushing living without complete authenticity is.

        My points are:

        1) The closet keeps us from genuine, whole relationships which is as much of a cause of loneliness and isolation as the maltreatment and imagined or real rejection of others. Secret-keeping is injurious (and not just on matters related to being gay).

        2) If coming out is a conscious choice then so is staying closeted. As a conscious choice; the masks are not “required” as the author says. Masks are chosen as a defense in the face of potential rejection and maltreatment by others.

        3) If the potential rejection and maltreatment of others is causing distress, one can choose to remove himself from that situation. My presumption is that the author is a relatively young but independent man. I’m not saying that would be an easy choice or that it would come without some personal cost. But he should clearly understand that the closet – with it’s well documented effects of detachment, depression, and suicidal thoughts – is not a safe place to reside.

        The author is not powerless to change his own circumstance; and a less judgmental faith community may ease the coming out process. He is not compelled to stay in a toxic environment any more than a person is compelled to stay in an abusive personal relationship.

        I thank the author for his vulnerability and hope it serves to help others make the Church a safer place for people who are gay.

        • OldSchoolProgressive

          I understand your points and believe that while they’re well-intended and supportive, they’re also auditing (you shouldn’t be in the closet, the closet is bad) and policing (you should come out of the closet). I don’t particularly think that Anonymous is looking for direction as to whether or not to come out and seems to know all the options pretty well. To be loving in this case is to assume Anon is doing the right thing for Anon’s self.

          We are quick to project our agendas in an attempt to offer comfort and to validate our own experiences. It’s an incredibly personal experience where, as you know, you end up really taking some risks. Coming out can be very unsafe, and this is Anon’s point.

          I think the best way we as out, gay brothers and sisters can be supportive is to say: we support you whether you decide to stay in or out. In the meantime, we can work to dismantle the closet so no one perceives it as necessary.

          • Ford1968

            OldSchoolProgressive,
            Speaking to anonymous and anyone in his situation who happens to stumble on this conversation, telling him that he is not powerless and need not accept and succumb to the judgements of others, telling him that there is a fullness of life that God intends for him that he has yet to experience, telling him that he is not alone and that others have walked his path and have lived to tell the tale – that, for you, is problematic? That is not inappropriate by any measure.

            I would never presume to tell anyone when the right time to come out is – that’s a very personal experience. Nor would I ever, as you are suggesting, tell anyone that an life lived without authenticity is something that one should settle for. The closet is indeed bad and dangerous, as anyone who has survived it can attest.

            We can work to make the church more accepting. What we can’t do is deny the very real dangers of living a lie.

            I’m sure you are well intentioned, but I hope you wouldn’t counsel anonymous to stay in a community he clearly is telling you is causing him harm in the same way i would hope you would also counsel an abused spouse to stay in the abusive relationship.

          • OldSchoolProgressive

            “…but I hope you wouldn’t counsel anonymous to stay in a community he
            clearly is telling you is causing him emotional harm…”

            “Nor would I ever, as you are suggesting, tell anyone that a life lived
            without authenticity is something that one should settle for.”

            I never suggested or counseled. My very point is that I wouldn’t counsel Anon either way. It’s not what Anon has asked for. Anon has asked for love and support no matter what decision is made. Allowing people to make their own decisions without projecting our own desires on them is a very difficult way of loving and a really important one.

  • Jim

    I was one who carelessly tossed around jokes and ridicule toward homosexuals. The thing that turned me around was having a friend come out to me. We know from research that persons who have close friends or family members who are gay are much more likely to be supportive and loving of gays. I truly understand your fear of coming out. I hope someday soon you’ll be able to take that step and introduce your inner circle to the wonderful person God created…YOU!

  • Frank

    To Anon: always remember that the people who truly love you will never encourage you to engage in sinful behavior, will never encourage you to make your sexual attraction your indentity and will never encourage you to surrender to a sexual attraction.

    I pray that one day you can be who you are freely: a Christ follower that takes Gods design and Gods word seriously and proves that behavior is always a choice and the best choice is to trust God, even if it means some discomfort and even suffering in this life. We are never more like Christ than when we suffer for our faith.

    • Taylor

      If I were Anon, this comment would’ve been an insult to my intelligence. If you read part 1, you know he’s celibate & he has no plan to be in a relationship. What more do you want? His problem is not with Christ, but with the church community that’s supposed to spiritually support him, but instead plays favorites.

      • Frank

        There is nothing insulting about what I said. All I said was to be sure and listen to the loving voices in his life not those that would encourage him to surrender like some of the commenters here.

        I have nothing but kudos and respect for anon and I hope he will step forward and be the shining example he is so others can follow in his Godly choice.

        • Taylor

          Anon has firmly chosen the conservative doctrine & he’s a big boy, not a child. He’d chosen to not engage in sin, and to be told “don’t surrender to sexual attraction” sounds patronizing. That’s not the main point of the article. He’s already on that path! Instead, pray to the Lord that his loved ones that still don’t know about this part of his life won’t beat him up once he “comes out.” You’re so talented at missing the point.

          • Frank

            Speaking of that talent…

          • Taylor

            I get ur point: u’re encouraging Anon to stay in his current choice, b/c liberals here r telling him to be out n’ proud. What’s the main pt of the article though? How to show kindness & acceptance to a repentant gay Christian in the church. Rather, you insensitively use his testimony to argue. Sigh..if I were Anon & u were one of my friends, I would not feel safe coming out to you.

          • Frank

            The primary point of the article is the faithfulness of anon and the difficulty of his situation at his current church.

          • Taylor

            Significantly more on the “difficult situation” part. Here’s what u’ve done, Frankie:

            “The comments have started to degrade into he should find a gay friendly church vs.homosexuality is a sin vs. oh no it’s not!

            First, I’m not the ambassador of the gay community or the Christian gay community; my story is unique as all our stories are. I’m not here to advocate for anything other than being merciful and kind to those who struggle with this sin because for some reason it’s taken more heat and generated more fear than most.”–> copied & pasted from the post above. Apparently according to Anon, you’ve degraded the conversation. U don’t like what I just said don’t complain to me, complain to Anon. Take care. Bye

          • Frank

            I hope you feel better!

          • Taylor

            I’m sorry if the truth upsets you. I hope you feel better too. Take care. Bye.

          • Frank

            Why would the truth upset me? It seems the truth upsets many here, not me.

          • Taylor

            I didn’t even attack ur truth, dude. I attacked how u used that truth & misrep Anon’s testimony. I quoted Anon, he’s not advocating for the conservative view (or the liberal view), though he’s a conservative on the issue. By his own words, you’ve degraded his story. I pointed that out to you, you told me, “I hope you feel better.” Your maturity is showing.

          • Frank

            Living out a choice is advocating a position. In fact it’s the definition of integrity. Anons Godly choice is him living out his love and faith in God. Why do you want to distract from that?

          • Taylor

            “I’m not the ambassador of the gay community or the Christian gay community; my story is unique as all our stories are. I’m not here to advocate for anything other than being merciful and kind to those who struggle with this sin because for some reason it’s taken more heat and generated more fear than most.” Anon’s own words there. I’m just respecting his objective in sharing his story. Frank didn’t and he was the one who got distracted.

          • Frank

            Actually I seem to have more respect for Anon then most here including you it seems.

          • Taylor

            I nvr asked for ur respect, dude, my life doesn’t depend on it. I’ve no issue w/ Anon’s choice & I happen 2 b conservative too. I just don’t like how u used his testimony to digress from his main pt. I already quoted his own words. Dunno how he can b any more clearer.

  • Digger

    I sure would like “Anon” to give more detail about this “Christian group” in which a majority of its members refer to homosexuals with words like, faggot, homo, and queer.
    Exactly what group was that? Why does he call the group a Christian group? Were the terrible slurs directed at him? How long was he in this group (obviously long enough to learn that a majority of its members talked like that!)? Why was he a member of the group?
    The original article starts with this wild claim, and quite frankly, I cannot step beyond my own disbelief at the shocking claim to lend credence to the rest of what is said.

    • DrewTwoFish

      Wow. Frank can’t get off his “homosexuality is a sin soapbox” when that’s not the issue Anon is addressing (or is even in disagreement with for Pete’s sake) and Digger is basically calling him a liar. I’m (temporarily) speechless. “…and they’ll know we are Christians by our love, by our love…”

      • Taylor

        And I’m too busy facepalming myself.

        • DrewTwoFish

          LOL. Thanks, Taylor. I needed a chuckle. Nice break from banging my head against a brick wall.

          • Taylor

            LOL…glad to help, yo!

    • http://snommelp.tumblr.com/ Snommelp

      Given the fact that the author is anonymous, I highly doubt any more details would be given, for fear of revealing too much and making it possible to track him. But is it really that unbelievable, considering the rhetoric used in discussions about homosexuality and homosexuals?

    • OldSchoolProgressive

      I have certainly heard these words used at the churches, camps, and youth gatherings I grew up in, not to metnion my own family. Perhaps you should sit with your own disbelief rather than putting the burden on Anonymous to prove the validity of his lived experience.

    • Bonnie B

      Hell, sweetcheeks — I’ve heard faggot/dyke/queer/homo **AND WORSE** used at all manner of Christian functions — from ice cream socials to choir practice to sermons to…. get this…. Christian committees planning ‘outreach’ to the LGBT communities. I can laugh about it now, many moons later, but at the time…. not so funny.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1608250979 Janice MacKenzie

        Arrogance and cluelessness are hard to overcome. Most of these Christians communities need more humility and compassion, as Anon was pleading for. I do have to disagree with his choice to be alone – the isolated third wheel – but it is his choice to make. There is nothing wrong with you, Anon, and the real SIN is in others – the ones that make you feel you have to be alone in order to keep your church, family , and job.

      • just another sinner

        I’m sorry, but a “true” Christian would not be using words like this. Sorry to burst their bubbles, but if you’re a Christian and you’re calling people a faggot, you better sweep your own porch and get right with God, cause he ain’t playin…..may the one without sin cast the first stone.

    • http://www.facebook.com/maryn.tompkins Maryn Tompkins

      I’ve commented earlier on this, but will again, in case you missed it. I have a close friend who went through almost exactly the same thing as Anon, and do not find it difficult to believe at all. When he did finally come out, he was shunned by his church and disowned by his family (for the most part). He was very surprised, however, at the support he received from his friends and does not regret his decision.

  • Doug Stratton

    Thank you, I would like to be your friend, in fact, I would be thrilled to know that I am already your friend. May God bless you and may the Church reach beyond the fringe and embrace you with a hug that goes far beyond sexuality.

  • OldSchoolProgressive

    Anon, thank you so much for sharing. Your struggle is complex and painful, and I hope you have all you need in order to be the person you are called to be. I certainly did not have the interest or energy to struggle or witness about this in the Evangelical world. It’s powerful to me.

  • Taraya

    Dear Anonymous, Thank you so much for sharing. I am so impressed by your candor and your strength. This topic is near to my heart as a close family member has recently come out, and I’ve realized just how negatively the church views homosexuality. It is not the unpardonable sin! I pray that you find your life full of blessings, and I appreciate your story:)

  • Matt Forester

    This article makes me very sad for its author. I would like only to refer back to FORD1968′s advice. He said what I feel about the situation better than I could. To reject ourselves as God made us is to reject God. I would only like to add that this author, in spite of his pleas to the contrary, perpetuates hatred of gays by refusing to accept himself as the person God made him to be. We don’t stone our children when they curse us or any number of other things in the Bible that Jesus would never approve. We should all let our walk with our Savior override the archaic scriblings of an ancient people who never knew Jesus, and some of those who did know him (e.g. The Apostle Paul) were also very human and capable of misunderstanding things. When we let the words of the Bible superscede our walk with Jesus and the Holy Spirit’s moving within us, then the Bible itself becomes our God and that is a form of idolatry.

    • 22044

      You may find it helpful to refer to Anonymous’ first post. In it he makes it clear that he trusts God and has a secure, eternal relationship with Him. Your premise of calling his choices mistaken and rejecting God misses the point that the people in his church need to change and accept fellowship with him, knowing that he struggles with same-sex attraction.

      • Bonnie B

        Maybe it’s not so much a struggle for him as it is a struggle for you and your cult, always looking down your nose at the “worse sinners” with your snide, belittling ‘same-sex attraction’ label, which is just the good little christstain dog whistle code for “Gays don’t love; they just f**k.”
        Just a thought…..

        • 22044

          Huh? Me and my cult? I would have fellowship with Anonymous because of his & my common love for our Savior. You would sneer at me, but you reply to me actually disrespects him, because it reveals that you didn’t listen to his points.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1270726414 Marion Gallagher

    You’re not broken.

  • http://www.facebook.com/maryn.tompkins Maryn Tompkins

    This story breaks my heart (and many of the comments too). I cannot believe there is any sin in being gay. How can it be a sin to be the way God made you? I have a very close friend who was in the same dilemma as Anon. He finally decided to ‘come out’ just before he turned 40. He was shunned by his church and, for the most part, disowned by his family. How very “Christian” of them. What he did find out, is that most of his friends knew already, and it made absolutely no difference to us. He was overwhelmed with the support he received and to this day, wishes he had come out sooner. He feels that his life actually did begin at 40. He does miss the contact with his family, but realizes now, that their intolerance and judgment is the sin, not his sexual orientation.

  • Bonnie B

    JMHO, FWIW, YMMV — there’s something going on with Mr. Anonymous, and it’s not a “struggle” with {insert en vogue christstain euphemism for “being gay” here}. It’s also not even Teh Gay™.
    I would suggest that perhaps Mr. Anonymous is dealing with a need for external validation so strong that it has become pathological, to the point of overwhelming his existence.
    Listen to what he writes —
    He’d rather have the ‘approval’ of his admittedly physically abusive father than say “I’m gay.”
    He’d rather have the ‘approval’ of members of his church who enjoy demeaning and denigrating gays than to say “I’m gay.”
    He’d rather have the ‘approval’ of everyone in his life around him than say, “I’m gay.”
    I would strongly encourage Mr. Anonymous to find a qualified, licensed therapist who is not affiliated with his church for some talk therapy with someone a little more objective than the people around him who obviously have their own issues.

  • blueswans

    God doesn’t make mistakes. You are exactly who you are meant to be. You are not meant to loathe that person. You are meant to love yourself as much as you love God. Your pain and your loneliness scream out through your words. Anyone who has ever lived a false life will tell you nothing is worth it. Please live true to yourself — that is God’s hope for you, and the hope of any true friend.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jennifer.j.kelley.5 Jennifer Jfb Kelley

    My hearts for you. I know how hard this journey is and I wouldn’t wish it upon anyone. Besides my support the only thing I can advise is find a Unitarian Universalist Church. We have affird the rights and worth of the LGBT communitty for a long, long time. Gay staff and clergy is an accepted norm. Your want to help in the nursery? We appreciate you sharing some of the load. Love and respect for all idividuals is the cornerstone of UU churches. I will warn you although Christian historically many people have found a home in our congregations. Christians, Jews, Atheists, Agnostics, and more. We believe in the worth of people and the fight for justice and equality for all.

  • Josh

    You are a child of God. Loved and embraced in His arms forever.

  • Astral_lds

    Let me explain before I comment that I am an anthropologist. For most people biology is the determinant of their gender identity. Gender identity is what anthropologists call a social construct. God made our biology not our gender identity. Our gender identity is created by society. Even though is should be possible to reconstruct our gender identity into something different. Psychologist have found that due to gender identity being determined so early in life, it is nearly impossible to change it once it is set.

    This is because the society that we live in makes being Gay an all or nothing proposition. Before the Victorian Era this was not the case.

  • just another sinner

    I do have a question…do you have female friends that would live in a married but celibate relationship with you, that might very well be facing the same thing? Companionship and friendship are not the same thing….as a “sexual relationship” but honestly–when you’re happy and really love someone as a true friend, who really need sex? I’d consider it, if I weren’t attracted to a “best friend”, to just be a great companion. There are women out there that aren’t all that into a “sexual” relationship, that could make a great friend and mate….. with that being the only exception. You know what I mean? You don’t have to be “alone”. I was best friends with a gay man…and this guy would have given me his shirt, but unfortunately, his life ended. I knew he was gay when we were 5….and loved being with him, as he cared for me like a brother would have. He was a Christian too, and I’ll never forget him.

  • dan_how

    two things here:

    celibacy is a commited sexual orientation, as is homo/heterosexuality. there are legitimate Christian traditions and hermeneutics for each orientation, which ALL fit under the overarching hermeneutic of liberation/justice. So, before we use Anon’s grace and vulnerability to champion our own platform, let us hold our hermeneutical arguments up to the supreme hermeneutic, self-sacrificial love. I shouldn’t have to argue that, as I may rather safely assume that most of the readers of RLC subscribe to that hermeneutic anyway. What Anon does here is not self-efacing; rather, it is a radical act of self-denial. Anon prefers the other to such an extent that he would rather sacrifice himself and participate in the love of Christ than offer another banging cymbal into this tired gay/straight debate. Anon is incarcational before he is political, even to the point of great sacrifice. Reminds me of a certain Jewish carpenter, whose refusal to overthrow the government with his Kingdom ultimately resulted in the ultimate self-denial, death.

    secondly, i am reminded of a Kierkegaard anecdote (which I will attempt to paraphrase) of the poet and the critic. The poet is one who experiences deep pain, and his cries of anguish are music to us. The critic stands far off from the poet and demands that he produce more or better, not knowing that what he is really asking is for the poet to undergo deep pain again and again for his own enjoyment. In short, the poet lives deeply, complete with joy and anguish; the critic can only talk about deep life from afar.

    Many of these comments echo that of the critic in the Kierkegaard anecdote. We have taken anon’s beautiful confessorial prose and subjugated it to a platform to stand on and trumpet our own beliefs. We are demanding of Anon that he experience deep anguish, so that we may merely stand on it and talk about it from afar, rather than preferring the Other over ourselves and coming to Anon’s aid.

    We all may legitimately hold on own positions, but when a brother/poet confesses, it is a travesty (and perhaps sin) to not prefer him.

  • http://www.facebook.com/brettfisha Brett Fish Anderson

    hey, thankx for the share, really… don’t want to join any of the ‘groups’ or ‘sides’ on this but just thankx, and REALLY sorry for all the people in your church/family etc who have not felt okay for you to tell this stuff to, that really sucks… this is an issue i wrestle with a lot because sometimes theology bashes heads with experience or with the experience of people i know and love and so it’s been hard to try and figure it out without being labelled something – but the bit about loving the person [and listening and being a safe person] – that’s been really easy because that is rule number one for the church really and with the Holy Spirit in me i feel like that comes naturally enough anyways… so ja, just thankx and all the best as you continue on your journey [and hope you find those safe people who will just love you and then try figure out the rest later]

  • http://www.facebook.com/michael.slivkoff Michael Slivkoff

    Brother – so glad to find your post – and so glad you had the courage to write it! I especially appreciated your advice under: “If you are wondering, how to find people like me in your sphere of influence, here’s how”. I have been praying about this for some time. Thanks. Truly wish I could meet up with you sometime before heaven. If you find your way out to Coastline Christian Fellowship in Astoria, Oregon – I’ll buy coffee/lunch!

  • meredith

    Great is your reward in heaven. Thank you for sharing, this is a something that Christians need to hear and will help us in seeing how we need to change and understand from your perspective. Stay strong, praying for you!

  • Friend

    My heart aches for you. I agree that, sadly, you have to remain hidden. There are too many who would judge you and hurt you. I wish the Christian church was more of love than it is. You cannot choose to be straight. Love who you are, for it was how you were made. And you are loved just for who you are.

  • http://www.facebook.com/LauraBerry2 Laura Hammond Berry

    What a beautiful writer you are. The step-by-step tips of how to react to a gay friend are great. I read them over twice! Thank you for this.

  • sarah

    hello. :) thank you for sharing your story. there is a lot i could say, but i’m sleepy and i need to get to bed. i live in a community of christians. the empty apartment thing came up multiple times, and christian missional/ intentional community might be something that is life giving for you? just a thought. it certainly has been for me. thank you for your honesty and bravery.

  • http://twitter.com/lauracricket Laura Neale

    Hi. Thanks for what you’ve written, thanks for speaking up. I respect and appreciate what you have to say, and I think it’s something the Church desperately needs to hear.

    Just wanted to mention, in the event you haven’t heard of it yet, Wesley Hill’s book “Washed and Waiting: Reflections on Christian Faithfulness & Homosexuality”? He is in the same boat: gay, Christian, celibate (only, out; since, you know, he wrote a book & all). He contributes articles to a couple of blogs too where really healthy discussions are to be had, and I know he’s currently working on another book about Christian
    friendship, especially as it comes to bear on the celibate life. It’s a dark and lonely boat sometimes, so that’s why I mention this. It’s good to connect with people, especially spiritual family, over our stories. Like the one you’ve shared. Again, thank you so much. Thank you.

  • D

    Thank you for your story. I am a seminary student, who recently entered therapy and recovery for sex addiction. Only a small portion of my problem has involved homosexual activity. But that means I have been involved in it and felt the shame and condemnation of those who have a more persistent encounter with these activities and desires. However, I can connect on the level of fear and secrecy. I am terribly afraid to say anything in class about my problem for fear of being kicked out of school. I am there to learn to be a therapist myself, and help others. I am thankful for my own recovery and the insight and love I have gained. I pray the church will begin to engage all sexual matters from education to reconciliation of all kinds. I also pray to be the friend to those in my area that have stories like yours and mine. Again, thank you for your honesty.

  • Bee

    So sad to see people scolding anon for hiding in a closet. Do you people think if it was that easy to come out to church people, we would be having this problem? Do you not understand that it is this kind of rhetoric that makes homosexuals feel ashamed, unwanted, unloved?

    When you stand before Christ, he”s gonna ask you, when I was a gay man seeking acceptance and love, where were you? You people are the kind of pharisees that stand in front of a starving homeless man, rebuking him for the sins that made him homeless, instead of feeding him.

  • Christine

    :) Thank you for sharing this! It’s never easy to talk about such personal struggles, even anonymously, but know that you’ve been so restorative, healing, and life-giving in these two articles! I thank God for you :)

  • Maria

    You are a beautiful person and I love you. I don’t think being homosexual is a sin but I understand where your beliefs are coming from because I come from a religious community where people believe the very same. I am so humbled by your faith and the strength of your love for Christ. For me, your words are a call to love reverberating in the immense power of Jesus’s call for us to love our neighbors as ourselves. I can’t thank you enough. Just in time to celebrate Jesus’s Passion.

  • Andrew

    All I can say is, “Thank you.” I didn’t write this, but it feels like I might as well have. Thank you for so well articulating my daily experiences and those of so many others. I know you started this off with a note on “secret identities,” but I find you to be nothing short of a hero!

  • blessedbeyondthecurse

    Wow…as a sister in Christ, I am overwhelmed by your courage and the cross you bear. I appreciate that you have made the distinction between your attraction and acting out on your attractions (in your article and in your life). Sin is horrible (I know, an understatement), but I am thankful for a Savior who can keep us, who has overcome sin and who sent the Holy Spirit to indwell us so we can stay the course. I encourage you, stay the course. You are a child of the King, beloved and valuable.

    Thank you for reminding us that as children of God we are to be Christ to each other. It is not enough to just “not talk” about homosexuality coarsely, we must see sin as God does…and it isn’t with jokes or ugly accusations. We all struggle with sin..it’s just the church has deemed this sin more heinous. The Bible is clear we are all in need of a Savior and we all have fallen short. Praise be to God, we don’t have to stay in our sin. We don’t have to continue sinning. I am thankful for you and your testimony. May it help the body of Christ see our brothers and sisters who struggle with homosexual tendencies in a new light…and to change the way we encourage and witness to others.

  • Pastor S.

    For context, I am an (ELCA) Lutheran pastor. Up until about 5-6 years ago, I was of the “love the sinner, hate the sin” ilk. I truly wanted to have and show compassion towards homosexuals. But I also wanted to honor God and scripture. The truth is, I never honestly and thoroughly went to the scriptures with the question, “Is homosexuality truly a sin in God’s eyes?” I didn’t think I needed to. I was familiar with the obvious verses that seemed to answer the question in line with what I already believed to be true about it. But that is the catch. I believed what I was brought up to believe, which agreed with the dominant viewpoint, and was easily supported in a surface way by a few proof-texts. I was never challenged to ask what Jesus might think about it, because of course he never addressed it. When I finally started to consider that Jesus throughout the gospels (through his words, actions, and disagreements with the so-called experts in the law) was showing us His and the Father’s understanding and proper use of the law. Once I allowed myself to be open to this possibility, I have to admit that (what I believe to be) Jesus’ interpretation of the law (applied to everything, including homosexuality) absolutely trumps things such as a couple of verses from a book that we dismiss or re-interpret much of already (Leviticus), or a story that is assumed to condemn homosexuality (Sodom), but is likely about other things entirely, or a couple of verses from Paul who on the whole applies Jesus’ interpretation of the law, but possibly doesn’t go far enough in seeing how it might apply to homosexuality (realizing also that it’s highly unlikely that Paul is talking about mutual, consenting, committed, and loving homosexual relationships).

    I now believe that it’s the most faithful to scripture to be supportive of committed homosexual relationships. For what it’s worth, I was not convinced of this because someone close to me came out of the closet. I was also not convinced of this because my denomination voted (in 2009) to ordain practicing homosexuals in committed relationships and bless couples in committed relationships (a significant % of the clergy disagreed with this vote and still do). I also was not pressured into this viewpoint. Pressuring me toward this viewpoint would have only served to harden me in my previous understanding. And yes, I know the scriptures very well and consider the entire bible to be the inspired word of God…just like I believe Jesus did…just like I believe the Pharisees did, who found themselves in direct conflict with the Biblical (law) interpretations of Jesus.

    Whoever might be reading this comment, if you haven’t read Justin Lee’s book “Torn,” I highly recommend it.

    • Frank

      So where scripturally does God support or condone any homosexual behavior? Surely you are able o resent some if you take scripture as seriously as you claim otherwise it would simply be a him a opinion shaped by something other than God,

  • Redeemed89

    Can I just say for the record?: You get it. This is who the Church needs. Thank you.

  • Katy

    Leviticus 18:22 You shall not lie (Hebrew word- Shakab which means sexual connection) with man, as with woman: it is an abomination.
    Genesis 1:27 So God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him; male and female created He them.
    Hebrews 12:28-29 Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear: For our God is a consuming fire.

    • otrotierra

      Typing scripture passages onto a blog proves nothing more than your ability to type scripture passages onto a blog. If you have a contribution in response to what was written above, all you have to do is share it.

  • Katy

    Romans 1:26-32 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections:for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, Without understanding covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: Who knowing the Judgement of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same , but have pleasure in them that do them.

    • otrotierra

      Nice scripture passage. But Because it does not address homosexual subjectivity, it is not thoughtful or helpful in this conversation.

    • Gena Clifton Norris

      I noticed that the phrase “God” ____ was used several times. So, maybe we should leave those activities to him. I am constantly in Bible study, and have never drawn any conclusion that we are to be the judge in any situation. In contrast I have found more instances of God’s compassion than I have of His judgement.

  • Cwha

    I am not ready to read through all the comments as of yet, but this article warmed my soul. God bless you. This’d as fantastic and I firmly believe in the integral role planned for you and others in the kingdom. Wonderful!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=827355596 Jennifer Jones

    I am in tears reading this. I wish I knew you, because I would love to be your friend. I’m a single celibate woman who grits her teeth and smiles though every marriage-and-family-centric sermon, who longs for the occasional hug, for a dinner invite. I can’t imagine the pain of being gay added to the mix. Blessings on you for sharing part of yourself, and I look forward to meeting you in heaven, if not here on earth.

  • gtrj0527

    These articles were so brave and full of honesty! Thank you for reminding me how very much we all need Jesus. Keep the faith and keep your eyes focused on His will.

  • Lisa Walls

    I read this and I see myself and friends. I see the comments and think it is easy to make comments when you have not walked in another person’s sandals. Being kind is not horrible of a thing to ask.

  • Gena Clifton Norris

    Thank you so much! I have been struggling with the “love Christ, hate homosexuality” issue for months, and had basically come to the same conclusion. Your revelation put into words what my mind has been thinking. I love your description ” Once a church centers itself around anything but Christ, it is counterfeit.” I think that is a perfect theology for today’s Church, which is struggling with many conflicts.

  • Suzanne Lander

    I don’t know what you mean by Churches involved in gay culture. I have been attending a Church that is accepting of everyone. Earlier in the school year we were invited to a family pool party thrown by a homosexual couple. No one mentioned that they were and a big deal has not been made of it. They’re just another couple in the Church and just as involved as anyone else. More involved than some. And I’ve never seen a Church centered more closely to Christ’s message of love.

    It breaks my heart that you believe God made you broken.

  • eaststroudsburg

    Thank You so much for sharing, I respect your privacy but know that My wife children and I would be honored to have you as a friend.

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A Church In Recovery

BY: MICAH BALES -- Could we come to a place where we recognize the need of every person to be...

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