A friend of mine, Nate Smith, wrote this piece for Andy Gill’s blog. I’m reposting it here for my audience. Nate offers solid words here for those with same-sex attractions, not mention a lesson “straight-folk” to learn, too. For me, I share Nate’s conclusions whole-heartedly. He writes:
For the longest time, I considered myself a gay celibate Christian.
It was uneasy for me to think about dating another man, so I kept myself pure by storing away any emotions I had for other men.
Eventually, it was not enough. The hiding away turned into a drug overdose and several other failed suicidal plans.
I penned “Confessions of a Gay Christian” on Relevant Magazine’s website, which was met with both praise and hatred. I spoke with friends and family trying to reassure them that I would stick to a “Biblical standard”, although a part of me ached to start dating another male.
There ill attempt at speaking into my life came with my supreme confidence that nothing would change. Why should it?
Also, why would someone try to tell me to stay single when they would never understand the loneliness that comes with not only being single in your late twenties, but a gay single who is given no options?
My gay confidence turned to skepticism only a few months later. It was through a series of visions that I let go of my gay relationship longing to continue to walk with Jesus. It was not a simple letting go, it was a grueling agony that took over two months to pray through and continued to gain more clarity on. It was a desperate clawing at my inner core that I learned to let go of. I have been celibate for the twenty some odd years of my life. I can handle another three quarters of my life living as such.
With so much confusion, my prayers quickly turned to anger because I had no idea what was happening. My questions were met with my roommates’ laughter as our discussions turned into the different women I started to become attracted to. Apparently I blushed as I unconsciously flirted with the woman behind the ice cream counter with my roommate commenting, “She was digging on some Nate.”
I started conversations with others who have experienced the same. I have met with men, on the same path as myself, who are dating women and those who are already in heterosexual marriages. I know I am not alone with not fitting in either of the “sides” that a lot of homosexuals identify with.
I had coffee with my friend who questioned this “sexual transformation” that I started having over a year ago. Was it a psychological longing that just progressed to change? My response was, “no” because over a year ago I was ready to date another male, all the while, I looked for gay affirming churches. Years ago, a conversation about a guy kissing a girl was usually met with my quick comment of “That’s gross.”
It was definitely not a psychological longing that changed me, but Christ who did. He later commented that I seemed at ease with who I am compared to his other friend who tried to go “straight,” but continues to wrestle with depression and anxiety stemming from sexuality issues.
What changed for me? I stopped worshipping the adjective I placed in front of being a Christian. I am neither a gay or straight Christian. Although, I can relate to such adjectives to some degree. I stopped focusing on what any side wanted me to define myself by. I started to let go of labels. I stopped focusing on temptations and desires. I had to remove self proclaiming prophecies of this is “who I was born as” and started declaring “who I am reborn into.” A person, a friend and a child of God. It was that simple.
Do I expect everyone to have the same experience? No.
Do I still wrestle with my orientation? Yes.
Does it cause doubt in what God has spoken over me? No.
I remember the coffee table conversation that I have become at ease with what He has already done in my life. I learned to let go of what the world, both Christian and secular, expects of me when handling certain issues…
I am not and will never again put an “adjective” in my God-given identity.