Like many, I grew up in a Christian household. We went to church every Sunday, said prayer before bed, and went to Vacation Bible School during the summer. I had the typical Christian childhood. Then one year puberty hit, and I started noticing girls rather than boys. They made me a little more nervous than they used to, and they seemed more shapely and alluring. In time I'd learn I was gay.
But what's a gay girl to do when she's been brought up to believe that homosexuality is wrong? After all, I just kinda grew into it. There was no traumatization or rape, no bad influence from some pedophile adult. I just was what I was, and all of a sudden Jesus hated me for it.
So like many, I spent numerous years struggling. I tried to ignore my attraction, which is a lot like trying to hold your breath for the rest of your life. Then I attempted to not be a Christian, what with the two being incongruous. But I knew Jesus long before I knew what "gay" even was; if ignoring my sexuality was impossible, so was turning my back on my spirituality. And so the years of battling went on. I loved God, but was told that God didn't love me as I was. The spiritual struggle brought on many bouts of depression and serious suicide attempts. I sought help in prayer, in the bible, in time even turning to two separate ex-gay ministries. But I still could not find the answers - the peace - I sought.
Then one day, during Sunday worship service, my deliverance came. I remember sitting alone on the pew, service drudging along with me wishing I were dead, or better, had never been born. I thought about how I had cried to God countless times to change me, and nothing had. I didn't know what to do; if God needed to fix me, why wouldn't He? If deliverance from my attraction could come, where was it? And it was at that moment that deliverance did indeed come. As I sat there, feeling alone and hopelessly abandoned, there was a sudden booming revelation in the deepest part of my soul, and an epiphany was unveiled:
THE ONLY THING I NEEDED TO BE DELIVERED FROM WAS BELIEVING GOD HATED ME.
That single line of thought was so abrupt, so forceful and firm, I knew that my own mind wasn't responsible. It was as though, beneath the crud and filth I'd been taught to believe about myself, someone had revealed a diamond that was just beginning to shine. This spiritual revelation was the beginning of my walk toward what would become true deliverance. The Eternal Trinity was with me on that pew that day; He showed me that, yes, my cries had been heard after all.
Although that single moment sparked a new understanding for me, the personal evolution from self-hatred to self-love didn't happen overnight. It has taken a lot of time, a lot of tears and pain, a lot of rejection and fear, but I'm both confident and happy to say I have finally gained my peace, spiritually and sexually. I know now that God loves me and my sexuality, for it is a blessing OF love to be able TO love. Despite the nay-sayers in the world, I know by redeeming faith that I am accepted in God's fold, for through it all God was with me, taking me one more step whenever I felt I had gone as far as I could, keeping alive a glimmer of hope inspite of the darkness surrounding me. Had I truly been as alone as I felt, I would never have been able to come through the shadows to embrace the light of freedom.
This new tranquility and strength is what I wish to both express to the world and share with my kindreds. There are many who are struggling between their sexuality and spirituality, believing that God won't receive them as they are, and are thus turning to lesser solutions. Oh, but how the Eternal yearns for us all! Those who earnestly seek Him will find, and will be lovingly welcomed. It may not seem so, but even when we feel our loneliest, we are not forgotten. For as I weathered the storm, it became evident that God had protective covering over me. No matter how low in the valley I stepped, God's grace kept me from stumbling into dangerous environments and situations. I never turned to drugs or alcohol as a resolve, or lost myself in carnality and sex. I share this not to brag, as I am but an imperfect woman of clay, but to bear witness that it is indeed our lifestyles, and not our orientations, that we have both the power and the responsibility to control, and when necessary, to change.
Through my Journey it has become my belief that sexuality is a non-factor in being a Christian. Being gay, straight, bi, or asexual doesn't matter to our Creator, for love is a blessing. What does matter is how we MANAGE our sexuality. Gay or straight, we must walk in obedience to the convictions God has placed within us. Sexual immorality isn't about your sexual partner, but about your sexual behavior. As Christians, we must ALL handle ourselves with honor and restraint, for this is what is pleasing to our Lord, not simply the pairing of man with woman.
Thus was born my belief that orientation is not a roadblock to righteousness. Many will agree; many more will not. But the fact is that this is a truth for masses of people, people who have struggled and won their freedom from self-hatred and fear of God's hatred. This page is for them, for you. Announce to the world your truth, that you walk with Christ and live by his dictates, that being gay doesn't make you immoral. But above all, tell the world that you're proud of your Christianity and your sexuality, and that you're a whole person because of it.
"May the grace of the Lord Jesus be with you all. Amen."