I would love to tell you that this blog is one that I’ve been earnestly praying about, that I’m filled with excitement about the opportunity to write…but I’m not. I don’t even know what to say. I want this to be honest, and it begins by acknowledging that as much as I am a lover of truth and an example of redemption, I like to live my life, keeping my story ambiguous. I think there are times when I would have much rather been a lover of self or a lover of money. There are some days that I wish addiction wasn’t a part of my story and my lineage, and that identity was simple instead of a complex eternal force.
But this is about honesty—an honesty that is messy and real. That requires the depths of a person to be revealed and power to be unlocked.
It’s about inviting Jesus into such a brutal honesty and simply having a conversation, giving him the opportunity to speak.
I’m a Christian. And I without a doubt I believe that the most soul-piercing, most difficult, and most beautiful thing I’ve ever done is follow Jesus. I committed my life to Christ somewhere around 5 years ago, fully surrendering to him in January or February of 2011. We’re 4 years strong, looking forward to eternity. But one thing I often don’t tell people is the question that lead me to open the bible and discover Christ for myself.
It was this simple: Was homosexuality a sin?
Among that question were several others “Who is God?” “Is he really loving?” “What does he want?” and “Does he even exist?” These were all present, but the main question had to do with me and my friends and my heart and my life. It had to do with unspoken words and bottled up emotions parading through the most implicit parts of my identity. My question stemmed from nights spent with tear-soaked pillows as I fought to reconcile what I’d been told about God and my unquenchable thirst for things and people contrary to these very tales. “But God, if you’re real, and if you really created everything, then why are my feelings not okay with you when there’s absolutely nothing I can do about them?”
It’s a question that only appeared in the most honest of moments.
See, feelings are truth but they are relative truths. They are the kind of truth that can be different for each person. Your happiness doesn’t remove my anger and my pride doesn’t make you feel like less of a failure. Relative truth places each of us in our own compartments, with no universal standard to measure our individual truths against. I am me and you are you and as long as one of those things doesn’t impede the other, both are free to exist separately.
But what if, ultimately, we are all a part of something greater, and that greater thing actually is weaving each of us to one another in a remarkable way?
As I searched for my answers and my quest to prove God wrong, I read the bible. Strangely, as I began to read the bible, I began to find a God that actually cared about the details of life. He cared about truth and wisdom and poetry. He cared about the vastness of the universe and the minute stature of birds. He cared about facts and stories, but also people and lives. He cared about wholeness, forgiveness, and love. Most of all, I found that he cared about me—that for one reason or another, he desired to show me these things. It was no longer about my questions, but about the one who held the answers.
My quest for answers became a quest for God.
I started attending a youth group for teens and the people I met there were so joyful. It almost seemed a little crazy to me, how much they were themselves—faults and beauty and so much more. I constantly carried this heaviness on my shoulders from the secrets I was hiding, one of them being the ever-growing elephant called sexual identity. It was something I had only ever talked about with one friend. It created in me fear and an ability to bury myself beneath layers that opposed any type of intimacy. I thought that maybe I was not worthy of the deep friendships that other girls experienced, maybe I was broken, or maybe I was someone that they were not. Maybe if they knew, I’d be cast out from the little bit of acceptance I had found in them. If they could see the real me, I feared that she would be desperately inadequate.
After a while I was persuaded to go to a prayer meeting. When I gave him the time to tell me something, he did. And it was there that I met the God of the universe, unrestrained, who spoke identity over me in a way that I had never experienced before. With all my messiness, he called me a daughter. With the chaos inside my head and heart, he called me beloved. With my fears and insecurities and inability to concretely define myself, he called me his.
Little did I know the journey was only beginning. There was a battle waging on the horizon.
-A World Changer