by Ken, 55
At 55, I realize that my longing to overcome homosexuality began when I was about 10, 45 years ago. I used to beg Him to move the desires into one hand and then cut off the hand so I would be rid of them. I used to dream of waking in His Presence in Heaven and finally being free of these desires.
From age 12-14 I was severely sexually abused by my male choir director, which solidified the struggle.
The first memory I have of beginning the journey away from homosexuality is 1983 when a friend in need of a roommate asked me to move to her home. The move got me out of the gay area of Dallas.
A friend told me about Exodus in 1977. I responded to his information in 1983. It took me six years to decide to check it out. I was amazed to learn that 80% of those who contact Exodus were sexually molested as children and 95% profess to be Christian.
The only way to overcome homosexuality is Jesus and the only reason to overcome homosexuality is Jesus.
For the next 17 years I bounced back and forth, loving Him but unable to stop the behavior. I had relations with hundreds of men. I had brief relationships with about seven. I tell you these details so that the miracle that occurred in my life is obvious.
I joined my church in 1986 and still attend 24 years later. It is a Bible church. I followed a friend from work there because I had watched her testimony for 8 years. She never condemned me when I was very obviously living the gay lifestyle. The Lord put me in her church because He knew it was a body of believers who would walk with me through the difficult days of recovery. I spoke many times in the prayer and sharing time in our services about my struggle, so everyone knew. Whenever I have fallen down they have helped me right back up and put me on the path again. They continue to be Jesus to me.
In 1989 I was arrested for public lewdness two times. The elders of my church handled my court ordered supervision. One of them asked me to have breakfast and Bible study with him one morning a week. Twenty one years later he continues to meet with me weekly. Healthy relationships with heterosexual men are part of the healing process. Here the Lord was providing that for me, long before I had learned of its importance in recovery. That is a church and a friend directly from the throne of God.
In 2000, my niece suggested I listen to an interview on a Christian radio station. The interview was with Sue Bohlin and Randy Thomas, board member and former director of Living Hope Ministries. As they answered questions I felt the hand of the Lord pressing on my heart. I sat by the edge of a beautiful lake in my city and literally wailed out in grief and pain as the interview progressed.
The next week I was at Living Hope. As I prayed about whether or not to attend the Living Hope support group meeting, the verse of the ministry, I Peter 1:3, was the focus of our service at church that Sunday. The Lord made it very clear where He wanted me. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.
The information I learned in my two years at the ministry equipped me to allow Him to lead me to recovery. He had drawn me in from the storm to fellowship in truth at His very feet. I had always known He was very close to me in my car, in my house, everywhere I went. His nearness helped with my recovery, including when I fell into the same old entangling sin. As the years went on, He repeatedly assured me of His love for me as He helped me up from each fall.
Now ten years have passed since my first visit to Living Hope. Last Fall the Lord started impressing upon my heart that I should attend the Ministry again. I resisted because of the usual excuses–too far from home, no time, etc. But I joined and was thrilled to find that the Word is being taught. Nothing is more healing than His Word.
Attending Living Hope the second time I began to realize that my uncontrollable homosexual urges were gone! I just can’t believe it but He has changed my heart completely by His love and companionship. He is a great Savior and can heal the deepest wounds of our souls, including homosexuality. I never ever believed that this would happen in my life.
Healing is often largely about the beloved believers He puts in our lives to help us along the way. These are friends with whom you can share your entire story. In 2000 when I began Living Hope, the Lord also provided the love and support of a dear couple I had known for 30 years. They are dealing with this issue in their own family which has given them a special understanding of my struggle. Their friendship and love have been very healing for me, another of the Lord’s many blessings along this walk.
I do still struggle with keeping my eyes where they need to be when I’m out in public. I learned from Living Hope that when I notice a good-looking person, I don’t have to sexualize them but instead to thank God for creating beauty and then move on. In earlier years, struggling with this issue felt like big birds flying at my face. Now they are just little irritating gnats. The problem is much less intense than it once was.
In John 9 when Jesus saw the blind man, His disciples asked Him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that He was born blind?” “Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened SO THAT THE WORKS OF GOD MIGHT BE DISPLAYED IN HIS LIFE.”
My parents had 2 gay children out of 3. My mother was devastated. Her statement of faith was always, “I don’t go by what I see, I go by who I know.” She never accepted homosexuality in any way and I do believe that pushed me more toward God.
It always seemed clear to me that homosexuals are so miserable that they are ripe for redemption.
Actually, it seems to me that there is no such thing as a homosexual. There are only people created by God who struggle with it, either to overcome it or to pursue it.
Our Beloved and Precious Savior allowed Satan to bring this into my life for my good and His Glory. I won’t understand all of His purposes in this until I get to Heaven.
Yes, He allowed Satan to bring this across my path, but my great God and Savior also gave me the way of escape: He Himself, the Living God.
“I waited patiently for the LORD;
And He inclined to me and heard my cry.
He brought me up out of the pit of destruction, out of the miry clay,
And He set my feet upon a rock. making my footsteps firm.
He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God.”
– Psalm 40:1-3a