“His blood is shed in confirmation of the noblest claim – the claim to feed upon immortal truth, to walk with God, and be divinely free.” – William Cowper
Worse than the dreaded black spot…
Worse than any hex from the witches in Macbeth…
Worse than being dead…
Being same-sex attracted
What if they found out? What would happen to my life? I’m already disabled, why did God have to give me this?
I felt cursed. I felt that I had to find a way to break the spell and to set myself free before the clock struck my fatal doom. The lonely quest to rid my mind and heart of this darkness was before me. Yet, quest after quest, I still couldn’t rid myself of this curse. I prayed it away. I literally cut my own flesh to bleed it out. Eventually, I found myself facing an ominous truth – it is better to be dead than being same-sex attracted. What else could I do? In death I could escape what cruel life had dealt in my losing hand.
40% of people, ages 13-24, who experience any sort of same-sex attraction consider suicide, reported NBC News on July 15, 2020.
Some would rather nail their own coffin shut than come out of the closet. March 2020, I found myself driving down that same road.
However, is this thing really a curse? Is it something I need to hide deep in a closet? Is it something I need to fear?
Loosening the Chains of Romans 1
For many years, I heard Romans 1:26-27. Sitting among my peers, I heard these verses echoing in my ears. Since I was attracted to men, did that mean God gave up on me? What did I do to deserve this? Hell scared me, and I tried everything to become “straight” and “a proper masculine man.” Each time I walked into a church service, all I could think was God giving me over because I experienced something I did not want. I could never get out of Romans 1.
Yet, just a few pages over we read Romans 5:1. I have peace with God, because of Jesus Christ. Peace doesn’t come from me or my doings. It came from Jesus. Then, keep turning the pages to Romans 8:1. Right now, there is no condemnation, because of Jesus. Romans 1 is my past. Romans 8 is my present.
I believed in my heart and called on the name of Jesus Christ, and, therefore, I am saved. That is it. Therefore, I’m free from Romans 1 to live in Romans 8.
But, that doesn’t change the fact that I am same-sex attracted. It doesn’t change my feelings of being cursed. Is there another way?
No Longer Fearing the Closet Door
Same-sex attraction, especially to Christians, can be a fear worst than a serial killer breaking into your home. We hide it away, close the closet door, nail it shut, and board it up with bricks. We pray and pray and pray it away.
But, what if it does not go away?
II Corinthians 12:8-10 provides hope.
Paul prayed three times for God to take away a thorn in the flesh. We do not know what it is. We could fill in the blank with same-sex attraction or a host of others things. Yet, how did Paul view this thorn? He viewed as something he can boast in, because God’s grace is all he needed to live with it (II Corinthians 12:9).
His thorn wasn’t a curse. He accepted it, because this “thorn” was a conduit to see the power of Christ actively working. Without it, would Paul or the rest of the world be able to see Christ work in such a powerful way? Paul never boasted in what he was strong in (Philippians 3:4-9). Instead, he decided to boast in what made him weak in order for others to see the power of Christ work in him (II Corinthians 11:30). When he did, look at what God did. Paul wasn’t powerful because of his credentials. Paul was powerful, because God used what others perceived as a weakness to show the mighty power of a passionate Savior.
Do I have the same view of being same-sex attracted?
Yes. It is not a curse. It is a gift. It is something God, not just can, but will use. I do not have to fear the closet door. The test of being a good Christian is not how good I follow rules and keep a “perfect Christian image.” The mark of a true Christian is knowing that Jesus Christ is working in you through his Spirit (II Corinthians 13:5).
Christ’s Blood Over My Closet Door
Fearing what other people think about our “weaknesses” is a scary place to be; when we focus on their opinion. It is a scary place to be when we keep hearing hellfire, brimstone, and every graphic imagery of Hell as we see signs saying, “God hates fags.”
The Israelites in Egypt faced a similar situation. Hated and enslaved by the Egyptians, they wanted to be free. In Exodus 12, God tells Moses to put the blood of a lamb over the people’s doorpost. Redemption was on its way, but it would bring a cost to those who did not have blood on their door. After this first Passover, the Israelites celebrate it every year.
Jesus is our sacrificed lamb. We are able to dip our lives in his blood, and to paint his blood over our closet door. Condemnation passes over us. We are free from the slavery of sin. A slave is loved by his performance. But, a son or daughter is loved unconditionally by their father. This is who our God is.
But, guess what? Jesus is not done. Because of Christ’s blood on our closet door, we can with confidence say with Paul, “I now boast of my weaknesses, so that I (and the world) can see Jesus work through me. Because, when I am weak, Jesus is even more powerful.”
Many times, we view same-sex attraction as a curse we must break. Is God surprised that this is in our life (Psalm 139:13-16)? Do we not think God has a plan for this, and he has us in this situation for such a time as this (Esther 4:14)?At least four times, in the Gospels, we are told nothing is impossible for God (Matthew 19:26; Mark 10:27; Luke 1:37; Luke 18:27). Immediately, some of us want to say, “Yes, God can take it away.” But, what if he does not? Can we still not say that it is impossible for God to use the same-sex attraction in my life?
Christ’s blood guarantees I am saved, and God is working in my life. His blood above my closet door frees me to be me. I do not have to fear the opinion of others, because it is God who my faith is to please. His love for me casts out fear.
Too many times I hated myself over being same-sex attracted. Eventually, that self-hatred led to a suicide attempt in March 2020. Does God want that for me? His desire is to give us life abundantly. Can that be for me ever tough I am same-sex attracted? A resounding, YES!
If I can’t trust God to work in my life with being same-sex attracted, then I truly do not trust the blood of Christ to fully forgive me. See, what other’s call weak, is kindling to see the phoenix-like power of Christ. He doesn’t see a “oops” in my story. He sees a new chapter to bring more glory to himself through something others reject. That is how powerful the blood of my savior is. Even though there are days I cannot see it, I know God is working. I believe he is, because I live by faith and not by sight (II Corinthians 5:7).
We need to not fear the closet door. Christ’s blood is over it. We can open up, step out, and walk in the freedom Christ gives as his living water overflows out of the new life he has given.
How powerful is the blood of Jesus Christ to You?