Things My Christianity Today Article Doesn't Mean
Hi! You're probably visiting because you saw my testimony in Christianity Today—welcome! Before you click around, I wanted to offer some points about what my CT article doesn't mean:
My story doesn’t mean that LGBT people don’t have real love for each other.
In many ways, my relationship with my main high school girlfriend was immature. After all, it happened in high school! I don’t say no to homosexual relationships because that relationship disappointed me. I know that many LGBT persons experience mature, deep love relationships, and that had I never met Jesus, I might have been in one right now. My “no” to pursuing sexual intimacy with women is about a greater “yes” that has overtaken my life.
My story doesn’t mean that Jesus “cured” me.
I still experience same-sex attraction, even 13 years after conversion, even 10 years into marriage. When I notice that I’m attracted to a woman, I do what all faithful Christians, single or married, do when they are attracted to someone who is not their spouse. I take advantage of the Holy Spirit’s power to say no to lustful thoughts and actions, and redirect my attention and energy. If I fail, I confess and receive forgiveness. I’m biblically convinced that Jesus is more concerned with what I do with my sexuality than where it is oriented.
My story doesn’t mean that my sexuality was all about that one girl.
I think there’s a way to read my story that would suggest that my high school girlfriend somehow “tipped” me, or that she was the main expression of my homosexuality. She was a beginning, but not the full story. I was with other young women before and after conversion, and as I said above, I am still attracted to women.
My story doesn’t mean that that’s my WHOLE story.
The piece covers specific chapters of my life: my revelation that I am attracted to women, how I met Jesus, and how in the world I ended up married to a man. But there is a whole lot not covered there, for example what almost ten years of marriage has meant for my discipleship, my battle with my own arrogance, becoming a mother. Nothing post-2007 is covered, and even my experience of Yale and early discipleship is eclipsed by the other things I was emphasizing. Like all persons, I’m much more than can be described in a couple of pages.
My story doesn’t mean that I still don’t understand the why.
A lot of my early days of Christianity were wrestling with why God would say no to homosexual sex and sexual relationships. I really didn’t get it; nothing in my worldview supported such a thing. However, I have grown much in understanding God’s purposes for sex and sexuality, and indeed for personhood, which shed light on how his ways for us are all goodness. This greater understanding has fueled my devotion and my resolve to resist temptation, but still, it has not “cured” me of same-sex attraction.
My story doesn’t mean that my marriage is a sham—or my salvation.
I have worked with college students long enough to know that my marriage story is off-script. The women I work with most often dream of falling in love, which was not my impetus for marriage. Love truly was, but not the Hollywood variety. This is distressing to some, yet my marriage has been joyful, intimate, and real. I love my husband. I have found healing in my sexuality in broad ways, in ways that have nothing to do with “orientation,” in the safety and delight of my relationship with him. But to beat that dead horse, even this has not “cured” my attraction to women. No married person is immune from finding persons who are not their spouse attractive; in my case, that is with women. I do think Jesus has used the fact of my marriage and my faithfulness to my husband to preserve me from disastrous mistakes, but Jesus is the good giver and my husband a good gift.