I have wanted to but wrestled with responding to this comment. However, I am going to because of the ex-gay/conversion ministry messaging in it; Susan E. writes:
I read through your entire blog and it reveals that God is not and never was enough for you. Giving in to sin and justifying it before people who really do want God to be enough is dangerous. You have chosen mediocrity which is the easy way and leads to discontent. Holiness is the opposite of homosexual sin (not heterosexuality) – holiness is also the cure for gossip, gluttony, pride, narcissm and more- but it is the hardest way. What’s wrong with hard when it pleases God and results in knowing Him well? Not a difficult choice in my mind – He denied Himself for me!! Celibacy is the least one can do.
Let’s break that down and respond to selected portions.
I read through your entire blog and it reveals that God is not and never was enough for you. Giving in to sin and justifying it before people who really do want God to be enough is dangerous…
I will assume you are telling the truth about reading all the posts and comments (to date) and yet somehow came up with that ridiculous assessment. Humbly stated, I do not need you to agree with, sanction, or even tolerate my life or faith.
My relationship with Christ is not frail or in danger because you choose to filter my writings/life through bigotry instead of accepting reality. Since May 31st, 1992, I am a gay man of faith. After 29 years of living by faith, my relationship with God is stronger than ever.
The Scriptures state that there is no shame or condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. So, out of a position of strength and authority in Him, I reject your judgment and curses. Worry about your sin and frailty of faith; Jesus and I are great.
You have chosen mediocrity which is the easy way and leads to discontent.
I have no idea what that means in the context of what you read. But, it is an asshole thing to say. So, stop being an asshole, Susan.
Holiness is the opposite of homosexual sin (not heterosexuality) – holiness is also the cure for gossip, gluttony, pride, narcissm and more- but it is the hardest way.
I was a part of the now-defunct Exodus International meeting that came up with the “holiness is…” slogan. It quickly became one of our principal go-to talking points. Did very well in helping people numb their hearts to the reality that they are imposing an ungodly standard (they don’t live up to) on His LGBTQ+ children. Despite the blatant arrogance in saying something like that, it helped people perpetuate the false idea that we were somehow humble, not hateful, in a “biblically” clever (at least we thought) way.
It’s not biblical or clever. The truth is, it took me a very long time to accept this, but the foundation of the belief that homosexuality can be “overcome” or something to be “freed” from is nothing but hateful. My core relational sense of self is how our Creator created me. To directly state that it is the “hardest” sin is an insult to the God who made me. God didn’t make a mistake. I am not a sin. Likewise, how I love people, love my soon-to-be husband, love God, and relate to the world as a gay man is not a sin.
What’s wrong with hard when it pleases God and results in knowing Him well? Not a difficult choice in my mind – He denied Himself for me!! Celibacy is the least one can do.
I don’t believe it is pleasing to God to live a lie, deny reality, and not seek to fulfill the wonder and beauty of who He created us to be. Living in honesty, not through a mask of slogans and filters of stigmatized idealism, is actually difficult. Living as a gay man of faith is certainly not easy. I am not complaining at all, but there are a lot of cultural Christians who have inspired a lot of hatred within their own ranks and in those who they condemn to hell. To say that you are gay AND Christian brings negative responses from across the spectrum of beliefs on these issues.
I lived celibately for 23 years, I even taught about it and traveled around the country speaking about the issues that being “celibate” involves. Even though I no longer agree with that perspective, I understand it thoroughly.
If that is the least you can do… more power to you. Not telling you what to believe or do. For myself, and what I have heard from many people, we used the “call to celibacy” as a shield to protect us from our own self-loathing and fear of others. We feared to be emotionally or relationally intimate because of past pain and hurt. That same celibacy shield also made us feel special (terminally unique) but blinded us from reality. Deep down, we knew in our hearts we were designed to truly be LGBTQ+ people. Our core sense of being was in conflict with culturally conditioned teachings that had been hard-wired (literally, through neurological imprinting) into our brains.
Coming out again, dating, being honest, and in relationships has made me a much better man. I bring honor and glorify God by accepting and finally living out how God created me. This little life I live is how He chose for me to manifest His beauty in this world.
It’s not easy, and I am not perfect; urging you not to be an asshole isn’t the godliest thing to do. But I meant it, and you should make that adjustment pronto.
Think whatever you like about me. I’ll be me, and you be the real and try-to-not-be-a-jerk-in-the-future-you. Have a great day.