How I Found Hope
Growing up in the rural south as a teenager struggling with same-sex attractions was challenging to say the least.
There was not the level of social acceptance and support that many students experience today. Although I never came out, I remember being relentlessly teased and bullied because most of my peers thought I was gay. And if that wasn’t enough, the church didn’t prove to be much of a safe place either. Many in the church would voice their disgust over gay men and women and offer no alternative to their situation other than condemnation.
All this left a confused 14-year-old boy sitting silently in the classroom and the pew with little hope of things ever getting better.
The situation seemed so unfair. I never asked to feel this way or have these attractions, and no one seemed to understand. I just simply couldn’t flip a switch and become “normal” like everyone expected. In the intensity of the pain and loneliness, I felt that I would have to bear this dark secret for the rest of my life.
However, nothing was further from the truth. I discovered that there was a God who was not removed from my pain. There was a Savior who loved me and desired for me to find my true identity and purpose in Him. He loved me in every way and rather than turning away from my struggle, He wanted to be in the midst of it. All that was asked of me was to trust and follow.
I wish that I could tell you that everything was easy once I decided to embrace God’s plan for my life and sexuality. In fact, the struggle seemed to intensify. There were days that I thought I had been misled and God was not upholding His end of the deal. After all, once I had decided to give my struggle to God my same-sex attractions would immediately go away, right? Wrong. I soon discovered that God was not going to work on my timetable and the outcome would be His alone to determine. I had to trust that He would give me the grace and ability to embrace the process. And He did.
I found out that God was more concerned about me having a deeper relationship with Him above anything else. Once I laid down my terms and conditions, I realized there was a life beyond my struggle and there was so much more God wanted to reveal to me than I had ever imagined. The secret to overcoming my same-sex attractions was not in having them immediately taken away but in turning my heart and mind to Christ and allowing Him to transform every part of me.
It was when I started seeking His face rather than His hand of healing that I began to understand who He was and how much He loved me.
Today, I can tell you that there is hope for your future. Through Christ all things are possible, and I firmly believe there is a unique and wonderful destiny that God has for every individual. God doesn’t promise anyone complete perfection in this life. But He promises to love us and to always be with us. You too can experience the joy of knowing there is a loving Father who gives hope in the midst of your struggle. Thousands of men and women have discovered the true joy of living a life fully submitted to Christ. I am one of them. Each one of us has taken a different road away from homosexuality and each of us has seen God move in different ways to bring healing and transformation to our lives.
Jeremiah 29:11-12 says “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.”
As I began to discover more about who God truly is and learned to depend on Him, over time, God began to transform my heart. As a result, I am now living a life that I thought I could never have. I am now married, serving in full-time ministry, and loving what God has done with my life. God has incredible plans for you too! All He asks is that we trust Him and never give up hope!
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