- We Get to Know the Real You
- Homosexuality: Real Hope and Real Change
- Jesus Is Ruining My Love Life: Is Religion a Deal-Breaker?
- Homosexuality: Real Hope and Real Change | Focus on the Family
I think certain types of intimacy need to be bound by commitment, whether it be a relational or emotional connection.
Unlike David and Constantino Khalaf, year-old Chang Xia made the decision to wait until marriage prior to losing her virginity. She came out to herself as bisexual only a few years ago, and she plans to remain chaste until she weds.
Although currently single, her theology on sex is the same as that of the Khalafs, regardless of the gender of her partner. Masturbation has long been a contentious theological issue for those who uphold these traditional sexual ethics. In mainstream evangelical culture, to which many WUM'ers subscribe, masturbation is taboo, often viewed as sinful, and sometimes seen as a form of homosexuality. I think that is problematic at times, but I no longer feel guilt or shame for masturbating at all.
Gilbert Gonzalez, 35, is also a virgin and is currently "courting" someone. A minister in a non-denominational group that works with LGBTQ Christians, he is committed to chastity until marriage for both theological and personal reasons. My deciding to wait until marriage for most of my life had nothing to do with God," he said.
I'm going to fall in love and marry my Prince Charming, and we together are going to discover everything about each other's bodies, and we can get as sexually experimental as we want, freely, with no negative consequences. I don't have to compare myself to their past and they won't have to compare themselves to my past.
I don't think waiting for marriage makes you any more spiritual or better than anyone else," he said. However, if he had to answer whether or not sex before marriage is sinful, his answer is still somewhat affirmative. Michelle, 26, and Rhea, 27 -- who asked that their surnames not be included -- came to similar conclusions. After being in previous relationships in which they were sexually active, together they decided waiting until marriage would benefit their relationship. Finding the parameters to their intimacy was an important first step, they said.
I sat through those weddings wondering why I was so unsuited for all those things. What kind of person I must be to be incapable of such love. As one wedding ended, when we all bowed our heads to pray, I closed my eyes and imagined what it would be like to be standing in front of the altar myself. My friends and family would all laugh because the priest was telling us to do something but we were too caught up to notice. I remember staying seated as my friends walked down the aisle, my head in my hands and tears streaming down my cheeks.
What I sensed imagining my own wedding was not relief. It was the first time I had ever actually allowed myself to picture it happening to me, and it felt like the dirtiest thing I had ever done. There was a lake nearby I would drive to when feeling depressed. How could I be so well-liked on the surface and reviled underneath? I loved my job and accepted that I would have to be single for life, but loneliness would gnaw away at me at night until I began to realize I would not be able to keep up this path for much longer.
- Compatible Partners | Gay Dating Site for Gay Christian Singles?
- dating on grindr;
- Jesus Is Ruining My Love Life: Is Religion a Deal-Breaker? - The Atlantic?
- Trusted Gay Dating Site for Christian Singles.
A priest once told me that gay couples were much more violent than straight couples, that they had much higher occurrences of domestic abuse. But he seemed quite pleased to have discovered this fact. If gay relationships are inherently wrong, then there must be something wrong about them. Christians can get pretty abstract when talking about this stuff. You start floating in a sea of terms like procreative and unitive and telos.
What I do know is that listening to this priest I looked up to telling me about this violence I had curled up inside me like a dragon sleeping in a cave awaiting anyone foolish enough to say they loved me felt like I was being hollowed out. I trusted him.
We Get to Know the Real You
I imagined myself cooking a meal as my partner came home, turning and punching him in the face while Tony Bennett crooned in the background because he forgot to pick up milk on the way home. I had never been in a fight before in my life. Is this what awaited me if were to try a relationship? Forget going to hell.
Were those my only options? Stay single and alone or become a monster? When I was in high school I once came close to driving my car intentionally into oncoming traffic. It was dusk and the steady stream of headlights whooshed by, each one like an invitation heading straight toward me only to miss at the last moment.
Where the headlights seemed to be calling out to me. There had to be something better than killing myself.
Homosexuality: Real Hope and Real Change
On the surface I was calm but inside the rubber bands of my stamina were being stretched to their raw ends. Soon, I could feel, they would snap. I watched all my friends fall in love and marry and move on. I wept as everyone I cared for celebrated this thing they thought I was completely incapable of. My friends became younger and younger as I sought those who had space in their lives for me. Eventually they moved on too. The soul can only take so much. We all have our issues, all have our sins. I think the problem is in trying to put this into practice in a church. The real world outcome is different from the textbook.
Another priest once suggested to me that maybe all us gay guys in the church could get together and form a community group of our own for support and accountability. As though a group of gay men under any circumstances will inevitably lead to an orgy in the parish hall. I am not seen as just another sinner, not actually seen as just like you.
Most Christians who insist this is a line-in-the-sand issue will claim that yes it is important to be compassionate to gay people, but with the alternative being hell, this is the most compassionate way to treat us. Real compassion demands truth about our limited options in life. It pained him to say it and I appreciated his honesty, but that was one of the last times we talked.
I bobbed and weaved through four post-collegiate years worth of Sunday brunches before I got caught. By then, it was too late to laugh along.
Jesus Is Ruining My Love Life: Is Religion a Deal-Breaker?
Non-straight sexual identity is assumed, accepted, or embraced. But genuine religious belief? Who does that? When I first moved to the city, I never mentioned God at all. But when I rattled off verse, it took a beat for them to realize I wasn't making an ironic Jesus joke. A total stranger eavesdropping on me in a Williamsburg bar interrupted to ask if I went to college. Yes, thank you. My parents — staunch, eye-rolling atheists — were baffled that one cousin held her wedding ceremony at St.
It was my atheist family that drove me to Christianity. The first time I went to church by myself I was My brother had just gotten kicked out of his sixth rehab stint, during which all of us had visited him for family week. Supervised by multiple therapists, the visit was an unmitigated, over-mediated disaster that left each of us feeling like his addiction was our individual faults. I believed my parents had enabled him.
My parents, furious with me for suggesting as much, went home to D.
Homosexuality: Real Hope and Real Change | Focus on the Family
I went home to New York, overwhelmed and lonely. Much of the lexicon surrounding addiction recovery is cloaked in religion — a higher power. It grated on the rest of my family, but I took solace in it. None of us knew what to do, or how to feel. I just knew for sure that I was searching. The Presbyterian church was ripe for finding. It was one block away from my apartment, for one thing. They seemed happy to have me. Sunday service gave me an hour to think about the hard things and to wish for better for my brother without irony or judgment.