So yesterday was asked by a couple of my co-prayer warriors what would have helped me as a gay person coming to church for the first time and throughout my first few weeks/months of getting to know people and then after I became a Christian.
So have been thinking about this and there are a few things that stood out for me and the most dominant one was that the attitude to homosexuality that I witnessed was mostly a liberal one so comments such as “I don’t think it matters now days” or “God doesn’t mind so long as you’re happy” and “it doesn’t matter does it?” were common responses when I did tell people about being gay.
When I gave my life to God I did this because I had studied long and hard and believed strongly that the Bible says any sex outside male and female marriage is sinful. There are even more references in the Bible specifically to same sex relationships which I also believe show that homosexual intimacy is sinful so I was not of the viewpoint that Gay marriage was the answer. I prayed this over and God showed me that the way forward lay in honouring him, in turning away from my sins and giving my life to him.
So in answer to their questions the things that I think make a difference to people like me to help them become a Christian once they start going to church and then secondly to start feeling like they fit in to the church are:
- People to listen without giving an off the cuff opinion about their view on sexuality or how God views it
- For people to try to get to know the person, it’s not about sexuality it’s about me starting to come to church (the same as if I was straight, build friendships on common ground to encourage me to keep coming back).
- Honour/embrace singleness *
- People who engage in conversations about sexuality to really know the bible, read the relevant passages, pray over them and form an opinion for themselves based on what God reveals to them, found a lot of people had opinions but when I quoted verses they didn’t know them.
- People to not sit on the fence, regardless of their belief be prepared to debate in a loving way, but saying “I’m not sure where God sits on this” does not help!
- To have a safe place, a safe person to talk to, non-judgmental and not a gossip and someone prepared to put some time in to work things through with you
- To hear preachers who are prepared to preach about sexual relationships of all types about what God says so I would challenge mediocrity and lukewarm preaching or in some cases total avoidance of the subject.
- Do not try to be politically correct, Jesus wasn’t and nor should you be!!
*an example here is at the first ladies meeting I went to we were asked to introduce ourselves and every lady in the meeting introduced themselves in the context of wife, mother, grandmother which can be very difficult for anyone who is single or struggling with their identity.
GOD IS LOVE
God is love, God is pure love and love radiates from him to me, God loved me even while still a sinner, God saw the inner me and still he loved me, he cherished me, spent time with me, invested in my liberty, God does not sit on the fence, no offence but God wrote the book and God knows the score, anyone who knocks on the door can enter in if they turn away from their past and their sin, and it’s in the Bible clear as day, it’s not right or proper to be gay, God still loved me it wasn’t me that was wrong, it was the sin that goes on and on until we take courage and listen to the voice of God, yes it’s hard but life was not designed to be easy, sin is sin, no more living on easy street, if you want your life to be complete, whole, your soul to be saved, your sins to be waived you have to take responsibility for your inability to see clearly that God’s word is truth, and as you grasp the truth the truth sets you free, as you change your inaction into action, God’s reaction, priceless; you turn from your sin and you’re let in to the most awesome Kingdom of light and peace, forgiveness reached, joy overflows and suddenly you know what it is to be free, my chains are broken I am set free because Jesus died on a cross for me, how much love does that take, I’ve made mistakes but God’s love frees me from the past and I am forgiven, saved and loved at last.