National Coming Out Day: It’s more complicated than you think

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National coming out Day was yesterday, October 11. 

I predict that even if the day had not prompted anyone to “come out”, the very existence of having a day for coming out of the proverbial closet, would have sparked just as much controversy and angst among church folk.

We are known for what we are against, and for telling people to do it our way.

To this statement many of you might reply, “it’s not my way it’s God’s way“. But that idea is often unconsciously used as a tactic for control in situations we don’t understand. So, today I would like to address this topic with my own “coming out” about my past, and shed some light on the parts that I do understand. This is my story.  You don’t have to agree with the things that I say, but know that I am telling it from a place of humility, freedom, and truth.

When I was growing up, I had several experiences one might consider to be homosexual.

These experiences occurred at a young age and all within my age group. These days it is referred to as “experimenting“. When I was a child, I heard an adult I looked up to say negative things about homosexuals and homosexual activity. As a result, I believe, I viewed it as a negative thing and I hid the things that I did. Taking on shame a very young age,  I let my feelings about such experiences inform my sexuality for a long time thereafter.

I became what one might call “homophobic“.

As my friends realized my animosity toward homosexual activity, they would intentionally go out of their way to grab me and make eyes at me, thinking it was funny. I felt like it was intrusive. It angered me. The reason for my anger, is that I had actually enjoyed some of these activities  in my earlier years but I believed that I was not supposed to.

Let me break that lie wide open. Sexual physical activity is supposed to feel good.

God made it that way. We need to stop behaving as though it only feels good in a “proper, biblical, heterosexual relationship“.

And while God gives us clear instruction on how to use this powerful gift, physical satisfaction is not always informed by our righteousness. Every time I eat a delicious donut, I don’t need to think about Jesus or do it in the “proper way” to enjoy it. My flesh can act and be satisfied apart from my Christianity.

We as Christians create an arsenal of problems when we speak and behave as though the world is not going to attain any level of pleasure outside of God’s will.

The fact that we do this (attempt control by misinforming) is just another sign of our desire to please our flesh instead of the Lord, which is antithetical to our position on what we consider more “serious matters” like homosexuality. We do what we want  when it comes to cursing, drinking, divorce and so on. But, when we get into the heavier things like how to treat a homosexual (hint: you treat them like you would anybody else and you love them), all of a sudden we are all about pleasing God and doing His will, dismissing our desire to please man. Or are we?

Many of us who champion the cause of heterosexuality do so in the name of ourselves and not in the name of the Lord. It is easy to see this when the picket signs go up and hate, instead of love, is spewed for all the world to see.

We want a problem to go away rather than a hurt to be healed.

Following my “homophobia” stage I grew older and “experimented” some more. Because of my lifestyle and the incorporation of homosexual activities, before long, I was in a place emotionally and psychologically where I would have been more comfortable in a romantic relationship with a woman. I felt better emotionally with women, and physically satisfaction could come from either, so it would have made sense for me to just be a lesbian. This same sentiment is echoed by women regularly in the statement “That’s it! I’m giving up on men and becoming a lesbian!” Sometimes followed by an invitation on social media of “who wants to date me?”

The problem is that this isn’t really homosexuality. It is lonely desperation.

These are the type of people the church can easily minister to. But first we have to walk in the solution for ourselves. During the time I participated in same-sex sexual activity, I was in the “lonely and afraid” category. I ran to the world because the church didn’t seem like it had much to offer. They had the same problems I did.

I didn’t know Jesus intimately and the Church goers didn’t look like they did either.

Homosexuality is not the problem. It is a symptom of the problem. Who we are being intimate with is not the issue, so much as Who we are not intimate with. I guarantee that NO ONE holding a hateful picket sign or arguing on social media is spending uninterrupted, vulnerable time with the Savior each day. So when the world looks to you for solution because you claim Christ, is it Him they see? Or your flesh-derived desire for control? Are you living the surrendered life you are preaching?

Stop preparing “biblical responses” to the world. Live biblical lives to change it.

On top of walking the walk, we need to be aware of the full spectrum of what people are dealing with physically, psychologically, and historically… before we propose esoteric, spiritual solutions to problems we don’t understand and that are not even considered “problems” by some of the people we are seeking to “help”. Some people don’t want your help… but everyone wants love. And we, being followers of Christ, should embody that… literally.

So, please… before you post one more article (even this one), comment on one more status, or tell one more person what they should be doing with their body… seek first to love and understand.

You can’t lead someone out of a place you don’t know how to navigate.

Your sister,

Monica

 

 

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