This is a topic that is very controversial. Most people have a position on the matter. It is also one of the only topics that whenever it is brought up, I tend to avoid contributing to the conversation. That is because I have a personal connection to this topic. I struggle with homosexual attraction, and I have for most of my life. Because of this, I am currently and plan to live a celibate life unless it is in God’s plan to change my attraction to women instead of men. I do continue to pray for change in my attractions, but I know it may be in God’s plan for me to not have heterosexual attractions. And that is okay, because being tempted by homosexual attractions is not a sin, but acting on those temptations is. This is not what I would have chosen for my life if I were in charge, but I believe that God’s plan is the best plan for my life, and if His plan is to continue with a celibate life, that is what I am going to do.
It started when I was around fourth grade. At that point, many of my guy friends at school had started having crushes on girls. At first, it wasn’t that weird for me, because it wasn’t all of my friends who had (or would admit to) crushes. But around after a year or so it did start to feel weird. All my guy friends each had girls they had crushes on, and I did not. They all just thought I didn’t want to tell them, but the truth was, I just wasn’t attracted to any girls.
Over the course of sixth grade, I finally figured out why I never had any crushes. It was because I just wasn’t attracted to girls, I was attracted to guys. I don’t think I ever actually admitted that to myself at that point in my life, but I did know it in my head. It then became my biggest secret. From the moment I realized what was going on inside me. I knew it was wrong. So I decided I would try to fix it, and also that this was something nobody else would ever know.
Of course, trying to fix it got me nowhere. I silently struggled throughout all of junior high and high school. And despite my attempts to push away, forget, or even combat the feelings, nothing ever worked. In fact, as I got older, it got harder to ignore.
Starting sometime in my junior year, with a big part due to beating myself up about this in addition to other things going on, I started to fall into a deep hole of depression and self-hatred. This could have been the push I needed to actually open up to somebody about this, the problem was, it didn’t make me want to talk to anyone about it. It was just one more thing for me to be ashamed of and hide.
It wasn’t for another year and a half, during the summer after I graduated from high school, until I finally was so sick and tired of this secret, and I had to talk to someone about it. Now this shouldn’t have been as hard as it was, but I had grown up hearing so much negativity about homosexuality, that I truly believed that if I told even my best friend, our friendship could end. Despite this, I took the risk and told him, fully expecting everything to change and our friendship to end. By the grace of God, he was so supportive of me. He wasn’t scared away by my problems, in fact, our friendship grew, because I was now being completely honest with him. This was my first by step forward in this area. He was and has continued to be a huge support in that area of my life, as well as many other parts of my life too.
As I started college, I was still so confused about my situation. On the worst days, I felt like I was such a failure in God’s eyes because I struggle with this. I still felt like I was dealing with some kind of unforgivable sin that I couldn’t be redeemed from. I felt that even though I did have a friend who supported me, that if anyone else found out about this, they would hate me either because they were disgusted that I had these homosexual attractions, or that they would hate me because of my beliefs about homosexuality. I was in tears many days of my freshman year. I did have good days, where I could feel the forgiveness from God for the sins I had committed, and would feel hope and assurance in His plan for my life. It was probably the most confusing part of my life. In addition to feeling all this conflict about homosexuality, I was also starting collage, losing contact with people who moved away, and at the time I didn’t know what I wanted to do in school.
As I have mentioned before, I did hit a low point at the end of the school year. I had lost most hope in almost everything. And although it could have ended very badly, I was saved by the grace of God, who brought me and my best friend together at just the right time to encourage me when I most needed it and bring me back to God’s arms.
From that point, there have definitely been ups and downs, but the downs have consistently gotten smaller, and the ups bigger.
One of the more recent things I have struggled with regarding this situation, is the question of what my future will look like, especially in light of this struggle. Around my sophomore year, I did find a few stories of people who did struggle with homosexuality at some point and had since started to experience heterosexual feelings. And I guess I started to kind of expect that that would happen to me. But as I continued to live, and despite many prayers, my attractions have not changed. I did get better at controlling them, which is a blessing, as I no longer feel like they are overwhelmingly strong, as they used to be. I expected that I would someday change and be able to marry. But I did start to realize the possibility that they might never change. I realized that I had been putting things off waiting for this change. It was a hard realization, but I started to understand that the change might never come. And that is not necessarily a bad thing. Maybe God put this in my life because He has plans for me that don’t include marriage.
And that is where I am at now. Like I said above, if God does bless me by changing my attractions, that would be great, and I would be able to live a more “normal” life. But currently that is not the plan, and unless that does happen, I will continue to live a life of celibacy.
As much as I dislike struggling with this, what I dislike more is the way it is portrayed in our society. It was never explicitly talked about much when I grew up, but the way other Christians seemed to perceive people who were gay gave me the idea that struggling with homosexuality was, for some reason, some sort of unforgivable sin. Growing up, I always got the impression that for some reason, Jesus couldn’t save you from that problem. And because of that, when I figured out that I did feel homosexual attractions, I felt so much shame and felt like there was no hope for me.
The reason I wanted to write this is because when I was younger. I looked everywhere on the internet for any story about this kind of struggle. The only thing I did end up finding were people who usually would end up abandoning their faith or compromising it in order to give in to their homosexual desires. It seemed like it was going to be impossible to live out my life as a Christian without compromising it because I am living with this struggle. But that is not true. God can do anything, and if it is in His plan, he can and will change the attractions of anyone. I don’t understand people who say that that change is impossible. God does miracles, and if that is His plan, he will do it! Now on the other hand, I totally believe that His plan could include me and others like me not marrying. And in a way it is kind of exciting. He could be planning anything, and His reason for not changing my attractions could be so that I can fulfill something I couldn’t otherwise do! It could be so that I can reach out to others who struggle with the same things as me. I don’t know what it will be, but if I put my trust in God’s plan, I am confident He will use my life for good.