This last year has been a journey for me. Coming to terms with my sexuality has been a difficult road of discovering how my faith and it coincide. I was raised in a very conservative small town in Southwestern Virginia. My whole life I had grown up in the church. I went every chance I could. I ate, breathed, and slept church. It was my life. As I grew older, I became passionate about ministry and volunteered in different areas. I became passionate about worship, I enjoyed it more than anything. I have always had a hunger and desire for God and have pursued him my whole life.
For the longest time I was ignoring my same-sex attraction to men and I just kept shoving it down. I threw myself into ministry, music, or my job, whatever would take my mind off of it. I was at church five days a week. I joined the worship team, the prayer ministry, and youth. Then finally I had burned myself out and had to step back from everything. During this time it forced me to take a look at myself and what I wanted out of life. It was time to “deal” with my “homosexuality issues”.
I confessed to my pastors that I was struggling and they told me I needed to make some strong Christian guy friends and that would fix the issue. I found myself unconnected and feeling awkward in the mix of conversations on football, guns, and fishing. While I appreciated what they were trying to do, it just didn’t feel right, it wasn’t me. So I backed away. I had some friends in Richmond and they knew my struggle and showed me such love and compassion and I felt God leading me up there to bring healing in my life. So a door opened up for me and I moved. I became part of a church and for the first few months, it was amazing. I loved the atmosphere, the community and I joined the worship team. It was great and I loved it, but I realized I was doing it again. I was throwing myself back into ministry and avoiding my struggle.
I met with the Pastor and he thought my struggles came from a broken relationship with my father, so I agreed to go through counseling to overcome my “homosexual tendencies.” I went through the counseling and it helped a lot to overcome my issues with my father, but still, my same-sex attraction remained. I remember crying out to God begging Him to take it away but with no avail. Then I realized if I wanted answers I would have to start searching for myself, thus began the journey of coming to terms with my sexuality.
Starting the search for “Gay Christians” on the internet, I was able to find the Gay Christian Network. I began to wonder, is it true? Could it be possible to be gay and Christian? I began to read and study intensively any materials I could get on the subject. My favorite book that made a significance difference in my life was “God and the Gay Christian” by Matthew Vines. Through research and the study of Hebrew and Greek words, the context of the times, social norms, and history itself I began to reconcile my faith and sexuality realizing that God accepts me just as I am. That I am wonderfully and fearfully made in His image. Though I didn’t understand at the time how God was going to heal me, I do now. My healing came when I finally accepted myself for who I was. Every day the journey continues discovering more and more of who I am and how to share my story with others that they too may find their healing.