This Page - Gay Christian, Gay Christians, Lesbian Christians healthy self-esteem, discussion on breaking the cycles of false guilt and shame. (Getting a revelation of God's love and acceptance of you, and God's desire to fulfill in you all that is good and meant to be. Allowing yourself to see yourself in a more positive light, and beginning to reflect this new inner light outwardly).
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s time has passed and as I have spent time assisting people in furthering their walk with Jesus it is my firm belief the majority of difficulties people experience regarding sexuality and sexual orientation really have nothing to do with these issues.
Rather, I believe they instead wrestle with self-love, self-image, self-acceptance, self-actualization and self-esteem. When these truer issues are addressed in Jesus Christ then the sexuality and sexual orientation will naturally and without effort fall into place and its proper holy expression.
It is important to view ourselves as God views us. To recognize the effects of false shame and guilt on our lives and our development, how to properly deal with them, and choose positive and healthy paths in God.
ou may, because of shame and guilt, have engaged in hurtful activities and behaviors for which you have good reason to feel remorse and confess to God for healing and new beginnings. But, you have no reason to find fault, guilt or shame for your sexual orientation. Your sexual orientation is as much a part of you as your eye color. God loves those with blue or brown eyes, red or brown hair, doesn't matter if you are hairless or hairy, tall or short, male or female, black or white or brown, with a great tan or (if you're like me, sigh) with no tan, gay or straight, all of us are equally Loved by God.
What does God say about you? What is God's view of you?
Frankly, and to be truthful, I don't think God has much of a problem with you; the problem lies with other people and self. You need to listen to what God says about you and not what other people and self says. God always, always has your best interests at heart, always is in the business of helping people grow. God is not in the business of tearing you up into little pieces, and then stomping on you. Even when you do screw up in life, and we all do, God's goal again is to care for you, gently guide you back into line, not point accusing fingers at you and tell you that unless you clean up your act you're a complete nothing.
If you're lesbian, fine, no big deal; if you're gay, fine, no big deal. It is a big deal when you make it into one. God doesn't seem to have a problem living in your heart even though you're gay or lesbian, so why do you have problems living with yourself as gay or lesbian? You have to reprogram your way of thinking, bring every thought into line with what God says, and what Jesus says about you personally. Too many good and well-meaning people have told you that you are a nothing, and so you've been trying to live up to that calling and treat yourself like a big nothing.
But, your heart's been telling you otherwise, and that's why you've been struggling. You cannot live like a big nothing because you're not, you're a big something, and that something is a precious Child of God, bought by Christ's Blood, Loved with an everlasting unconditional Love by the God who created you so special. The miserable way you feel isn't because of your sexual orientation, but because of the icky things you've been telling yourself you are but are not. The miserable way you feel isn't because you are gay, but because you've been thinking that being gay is bad, thinking therefore then that you must be bad since you have "gay feelings," and therefore trying to live as a bad person. I John 3:1-3; I Corinthians 6:20; 7:23-24; Ephesians 1:7; 2:13
So, stop. The apostle Paul wrote, "whatever things are lovely, positive, of good report, which lead to growth and edification, think on those things." Reject everything that abuses self and other people, reject things that tear down and do not build, etc. Embrace the image God sees in you, and reflect it outwardly. Philippians 4:8-9
Because of false shame and icky guilt, you may have mistreated yourself sexually. If I were to break into your home, and try to steal your stereo or television, would you not try to stop me? Yes, of course. But, if I were to break into your self, and try to steal your virginity, your body, your sexuality, would you not try to stop me? No, probably not, if you're like most people. We so desire to be Loved and accepted, by peers, by lovers, by friends, by everyone. Sometimes, we compromise ourselves in that pursuit of acceptance; we misuse or abuse sex, and as a result we can often confuse sex with Love, sex with intimacy, sex with relationship. Sex can be for reproduction, recreation and relationship. Sex can be a form of expression of Love, uplift relationship, and deepen intimacy. God designed sex to be more than just physical. Sex can be used positively or negatively.
The apostle Paul wrote we are to treat our bodies as temples of the Holy Spirit. Rightly so, for within you, in your heart lives Christ and the Holy Spirit. Everywhere you go, everything you do, Jesus is there also, right along with you. Is it any wonder then, how and why we often grieve the Holy Spirit, make God cry? I say these things not to bring you under condemnation, but into liberty and joy, free from bonds and wounds and mistreatment of self. God does not want you to walk improperly in your sexuality, but rightly and with all wisdom and joy. If you think poorly of yourself, then more than likely you will see your sexuality in the same vein, and mistreat and abuse it and yourself in the process. Think rightly about yourself, see yourself as God see you, and you will more than likely choose to walk in your sexuality in positive ways.
Or, instead of mistreating your sexuality, perhaps out of false shame and bad guilt you may see your sexuality as something that must be avoided at all costs. Buried so deep, you strive with all your might to keep it suppressed, hidden from self and others. You goal to be free of it, yet in the process you deny a very part of who you are, fracturing self into parts and not a whole. You never place yourself in a position to acknowledge your feelings for members of your same sex.
Or out of false shame and guilt you may have strived to be someone you are not, straight. You've tried to change your sexual orientation. Angry at being gay you may even take out this anger on yourself, or on anyone else who is gay. You become zealous, try to argue and prove being gay is wrong, and cling to the false hope you can be someone else. God wants you to be yourself, free from anger and self-hatred, free from false shame.
If you have mistreated yourself sexually, God can restore it just as God can restore your heart and mind, too. Turn to God; ask Jesus to forgive you of your sexual shortcomings. If you have denied your sexuality, God can help integrate it into your fuller self, help you find its proper place and expression within God's design and plan for your individual life. If you've tried to change your sexual orientation, God can help you find peace and joy in it, and its proper place in your life.
Many times, when people feel poorly about their self-image, they will actually feed it in negative ways and behaviors, reinforcing to self, "see, you really are nothing." But, God knows better, knows who you really are, and knows your full potential.
I didn't break these negative cycles, not even after I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior and became a Christian. Instead, it was years later, when I finally got a revelation of God's Love for me, God's acceptance of me, and God's desire to fulfill in me all that is good and meant to be. I then began to allow Jesus to form and shape me into the person God desires me to be. Seeing myself in a more positive light, I began to reflect this new inner light outward. I began to take better care of myself, dress better, express myself with more confidence and assurance. I began to explore myself, try new things; talents and interests long ignored or suppressed. One day, at a Church potluck picnic, they were short one man for a softball team. No amount of arguing that I was uncoordinated and a poor athlete, or at least I thought I was, could persuade them to choose someone else. At my first time at bat, I swung the bat and hit the ball over the fence, a home run. I've been hitting home runs in life ever since. Sure, sure, I strike out sometimes, too, but I always go up to bat again the next time around, I don't give up and go home. I don't quit the game.
The person I was at age four began to express himself for the first time as an adult within the guidelines God created in me. I also began to allow God to correct the errors of years, lies, missteps, misconceptions, self-doubts and self-avoidance. I began to allow the God of New Beginnings to shape within me a new heart, a new approach on life, with new attitudes, new visions, new goals and objectives within the framework of who I am and am meant to be. I am the same person I was at age four, only better now, and more fully, the old negative thoughts and actions dying and removed, and the new positive things growing and expanding within the framework of God's original design.
I am still learning, still growing, still pressing onward, still the clay in the Master Potter's hands. Sometimes I still get out of balance, or fall back into the old ways of thinking. My soul slate may be wiped clean, I may be given a new heart outlook on life, but I still have to live in the same body, with the same mind, and often with the same people, culture and society as in the past. Sometimes I get the better of myself, let myself, and God down, and fall back into the old patterns of thought and life. Sometimes my body does and craves things it should not, sometimes my mind entertains thoughts it should not, sometimes I listen to the false, negative things people, society and culture, and even myself say about me. But, thanks be to God, who gives me the victory through Jesus Christ. For I have the Holy Spirit living within me, Who guides and helps me to recognize my missteps, helps me stand up in Christ, turn and reject the old and the negative, and embrace all the more the new and the positive.
his is what you can achieve, too. Let us look at some stages in life, some things which life throws at us, which can affect who we are, and war against what God desires us to be. If you see yourself in some of these things, despair not, but learn, and be better for the learning.
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