In my inbox this morning, I found the following letter:
I’m am married man with kids who my whole life has lived with homosexual tendencies. Scared and still am for most of my life of someone finding out. I have hidden it, and no one in my straight life knows of this side of me.
I don’t understand why I was born with this—and yes, I feel it is something you are born with, and not something you can get rid of if you want. I’m not sure why I’m emailing you with this, except for the fact that I could use prayer! I can’t tell you the number of times I have cried in desperation to be rid of this, but for whatever reason it is here in my life. I have acted on the tendencies in the past a few times, and fallen to my knees afterward.
I have heard that if those who are like me would just trust Christ, he will take it away. I have reflected on this, and I think it’s not that I don’t trust Christ, but that I don’t trust myself to turn it over. I have read my Bible more, and prayed more to be straight. I don’t feel that I have the strength to let it go. I don’t think it would magically go away, although I wish it would. I think what my desire would be is to find healing, find an accountability partner, and someday even be someone who could counsel those who suffer from.
It’s so hard doing this alone, and it’s not like I can walk up to someone at church and say, “Hi, I struggle with homosexual tendencies, and I would love prayer.” I fear I would be thrown out of the church, let alone what it would do to my family. My world is straight. I have served on the church board, sang in the worship team, worked with the youth. I don’t know what I would call myself, except a follower of Christ who has scars and has tried to do it alone for too long.
By you posting this I think it has given me the courage to at least tell this to you, although it’s anonymous. I had to do this, if for nothing else to say I’m gaining the strength to someday accept who I am, and it doesn’t mean I’m any less loved by Christ. I’m not sure if I’m rambling or making sense. It is challenging to write of this, as this is the first time I have faced it in this manner.
Thanks for being used by God!
Thanks for listening.
Dear guy who wrote me the above:
What a beautiful and terribly sad letter. Thank you for it.
Right off I want to say what I’m sure you’ve heard plenty of times—especially lately—and that I hope you actually hear, which is that being gay is not a sin. It’s not, it’s not, it’s not, and anyone who tells you that it is wouldn’t know the Bible from a phone book. (To watch a lot of Christians—straight, gay, and every which way—testify about this, visit The Not All Like That (NALT) Christians Project.)
If I might say real quick: you must share this struggle with your wife. You can lie to the church; you can lie to your friends; you can lie to your parents; you can even (for a while) lie to your children. But don’t lie to your wife. She deserves to know what you’re going through—and you deserve for her to know. By not sharing this with her you are (for lack of a gentler way of putting it) tricking her into living a lie. Doing that is infinitely worse than anything you could ever do relative to your being gay.
Tell her, buddy. She might surprise you. She might have a few secrets of her own she’d love to get off her chest. You never know. But you do know that if, by way of protecting yourself, you continue to allow the person who has entrusted you with her life to believe that she’s living one life while in fact she’s living another, you will go to your grave burning with the regret of having caused and perpetrated that tragedy.
Don’t do that to yourself. Don’t do it to her. However long you’ve been keeping this from her is long enough. Share! She’s your wife; your partner; your mate. She’s your friend. If she loves you, she’ll want above all to be part of everything you go through. If she doesn’t love you—or if she freaks out and decides she doesn’t once you’ve told her about this—then, yes, you’ll have to deal with that pain and trauma. But at least all your cards will be on the table. At least you’ll then be playing an honest game.
Remember what Christ said: The truth will set you free. If you believe anything Christ ever said, believe that.
Love to you, brother. I wish you didn’t have to go through this. I wish nobody ever did. And by sharing this testimony as you have, you have helped to bring about the time that no one ever will.