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The Good News is that you don’t have to pretend any more! You don’t have to pretend that you are straight. You don’t have to pretend that you have things under control. And you don’t have to pretend that the Bible really doesn’t say anything against gay sex. You don’t have to pretend that you’re not a sinner.
Pretending is a lot of work, especially if you have to do it all the time. And it has other drawbacks as well. It keeps us from forming genuine, deep relationships. Pretty soon we don’t know who we are any more – what is pretense and what is really us. The worst of it is that pretending doesn’t cut it with God at all. He had some choice things to say to the Pharisees who were very good at this game. Remember?
There’s more Good News: You don’t have to be perfect before God will love you. The Good News is that God loves you just as you are. He loves you just where you are. He would have come to die for just you if you were the only one who needed saving. In fact He went to the trouble of picking a feeble little woman to be spokesperson for Him in order to give you that message. Here it is:
Christ would have died for one soul in order that that one might live through the eternal ages.” (Ellen White, Testimonies to the Church, Volume 8, p. 72)
That means that if you were the only sinner, Christ would have died for you alone! That’s how precious you are in His sight.
And there’s more: Not only do you not have to pretend that you are straight. You also don’t have to be straight to be close to God. In case you didn’t know it, it was likely mainly straight people who crucified Christ. So being straight doesn’t get you a lot closer to a real relationship with Jesus. In fact, according to my observation, being homosexually oriented and finally admitting it and turning it over to God gives you an advantage over most of the straight members in your congregation. You see, if you take the route of giving your sexuality to God because there’s nothing much good that you can do with it on your own, you’ll know that you absolutely have to depend on Him in order to make it anywhere. You won’t dare walk alone, but you’ll know He’s always beside you. Right beside you, close enough so you can cling to Him. And cling you must, for dear life, as you know, because otherwise you’ll blow it.
Why does that give you an advantage over most of the members in your church? Because none of us can make it without clinging to Christ for dear life. But it’s so much easier for us to forget when we “only” have sins of pride, selfishness, covetousness, lust, ostentatiousness, dishonesty — you know, the more “respectable sins.” (See, “Calling Sin by Its Right Name” on the GLOW web site.) But if you struggle with sexual sins you know you need to cling to God. And that’s the only way any of us are going to make it to heaven –clinging to Christ closely enough to be wrapped up in His robes of righteousness. And, after all, that’s all that matters, isn’t it?
This little life here is a drop in the bucket of eternity. But that’s not saying that going with Christ here is a dreary journey. On the contrary, you’ll experience a sense of freedom and excitement when you finally give it all to Him and forget about trying to justify yourself or pretend that you aren’t what you are — a sinner in desperate need of saving. How do I know? I’ve experienced it!!
No, I haven’t lived the “gay” life in of of North America’s big cities. But I’ve seen myself in contrast to the purity and holiness of Jesus, and that’s an experience never to be forgotten! It’s an experience of dying — which isn’t nice. Death isn’t called an enemy without reason. But after dying comes resurrection and walking in newness of life with Jesus Christ.
Sure, we stumble and even fall every now and then even after we enter into the new life. But He does not cast us off or forsake us. He’s right there to pick us up — even when/if we do something nasty like getting into porn and feeling really filthy as a result. (One of our GLOWfriends members wrote it up nicely several years ago. Check out, “Jesus and Porn.”) Having said that, we’re far better off just walking so close to Jesus that we don’t even get close to something that nasty — having every thought in subjection to Him. If you haven’t experienced that, you’ve got the best of life yet ahead of you.
And the Good News is that you can begin right now!! We enter into the Kingdom right here and now, even though we must wait for the Second Coming to experience all of its fullness. But even a taste of His Kingdom is a whole lot better than anything the world has to offer. If you don’t believe me, you’ll just have to experience it, for spiritual things are spiritually discerned, and you get that discernment only with the new birth. What have you got to lose? What do you have to give up, except a poor, sin-polluted heart? God will never ask you to give up anything that is in your best interest to keep.
The excitement in the world that kept you from being overwhelmed with loneliness is shown up for the poor substitute it really is once you get just one glimpse of our dear Lord Jesus. Begin today, right now, to walk with Him. Just make the choice now and tell Him, “Lord, please take my heart, my sinful heart, for I cannot give it. Take me and mold me into your image. Keep me close to Yourself and show me the way to go, for I do not know the way.”
He will show you, if you pray that prayer! But I wouldn’t be honest if I told you that he’ll show you a path covered with velvet. You may not like what He shows you, but if you will step out in faith and walk in that path, He will reward you –not just in eternity, but here and now! You will have a peace and inner joy that you could only dream of before, and He will lead you on paths of new adventure. Those members of our GLAdventist support list who have made a total commitment will testify to the rewards.
If you’re not quite ready for that, “Ask Him to give you repentance, to reveal Christ to you in His infinite love, in His perfect purity. In the Savior’s life the principles of God’s law–love to God and man–were perfectly exemplified. Benevolence, unselfish love, was the life of His soul. It is as we behold Him, as the light from our Savior falls upon us, that we see the sinfulness of our own hearts.” (Steps to Christ, p. 28) He has promised, “You shall find me if you search for me with all your heart.” (Jeremiah 29:13)
May you find Him who has come that our joy might be full! (John 15:11)
A friend from the other side of the world just alerted me to a blog that quoted from this post like this:
I wrote this in reply:
Dear Maia, I want to commend you on your commitment to biblical truth. I you will add to that a commitment to faithful representation of the views of others, you will be a powerful influence for good.
Unfortunately, you fell down on the second point in your misrepresentation of my views and the views of subscribers to our support list. The Gladventist view is fairly well known in Adventist circles for its support of biblical sexual standards these are explicitly spelled out at in Options 3 & 4 (celibacy or heterosexual marriage) at “I’m a Gay Adventist – So What Are My Biblical Options?“:
If you will read carefully, I call for full surrender to the Lord.
I would also like to suggest to you, Maia, that if you really want to influence gay people for God, you are more likely to succeed by getting to know them and trying to understand them. That’s what Jesus did. In fact, he lived life among sinners so that He might be able to empathize with them. Have you done the same thing with gay people so that you have any basis to speak to them? They are used to being condemned by those who profess to worship God. They are not used to being loved by people who believe that the biblical standard reserves sex only for those committed to each other in a life-long heterosexual marriage.
I also note that you have utterly distorted my views in another way: I did not say that practicing gay sex (homosexuality) brings one closer to God. What I did write is that a recognition of one’s need – as gay people committed to Christ will experience – will keep them closer to God. I have seen this over and over again. They know that if they do not stay close to Christ, they will fall, and their “falls” (sexual encounters) are so much more obvious than the falling into pride or gossip.
I suggest that if you want to quote from a website to support your conclusions, you read more than one post so you can know what that site stands for. It would be humorous that you see us standing for precisely the opposite of what we do stand for if this were not such a serious subject.
In the post that you quote, I appeal to gay Adventist readers to submit themselves fully to the guidance of the Holy Spirit. I am confident that the Holy Spirit will never lead them in the wrong way. I trust the Holy Spirit, do you?
It also occurs to me that there are a few things you do not understand about a homosexual orientation. I can’t blame you too much because you are rather young. But that also means that perhaps you should be a little less authoritative in your approach.
1. Many gay people feel that they were “born” with a same-sex orientation. This is not necessarily so, but it *feels* like that to them because as far back as they can remember, they felt “different” from those around them, and they identified more with the opposite sex. And when they became sexually aware, they were attracted to their own sex. This was/is *not* a choice.
2. Being homosexually oriented is not the same as being sexually active with a same-sex partner.
3. It is possible to be homosexually oriented and celibate. But that’s not an easy path.
4. It is possible to be homosexually oriented and heterosexually married, have children, etc. This means that the gay person has to actively nurture the love relationship with the opposite partner and guard heart, eyes and mind to resist homosexual temptations.
5. A homosexual orientation is not the same as sexual “lusting.” Lusting means to indulge in sexual fantasies regarding another person. If this were not so, nearly all men would be guilty of lusting every single day of their adult lives. (Another way of saying the same thing is that attraction is not lusting.)
6. Being “straight” simply means being attracted to the opposite sex. It does not necessarily result in holy living.
But that’s all that I have time for now. For more, you can check one of our sites – either by clicking on my name and the website to which it is linked or by going to http://glow.cc/. (This is a different website with different content.)
Thank you so much for your insights!!! I am a 57-year-old Christian woman who is horrified by the world’s redefinition of marriage, but I have known a number of gay and lesbian people and have thought long and hard about the options open to a homosexual Christian.
Recently, I have considered the scenario that the apostle Paul might have been a homosexual who begged God three times to take away the thorn in his side. Instead, God replied, “My grace is sufficient for you.” We know that God gave Paul an unsurpassed love for the church, the body of Christ and that his total surrender to his commission changed the world.
As you say, Christ is the only answer. We are all sinners in need of a Savior. Clinging to Christ has brought me hope, peace, and joy not guilt and despair. Yes, it brings reformation as well and included in that reformation is the realization that God loves me even though I don’t deserve it. Accepting that love results in looking at others through eyes of love and as brothers and sisters in Christ and sinners in need of a Savior just like me.
God has given you a ministry. And He has given you understanding and a clarity of vision. I will pray for you and your ministry and that God will continue to give you clarity, peace, and joy!
Your sister in Christ!
What an intelligent, enlightened blessing it is to read this blog by Inge Anderson, which in my opinion is totally right on, realistic and in tune with God’s word. I cannot for the life of me understand the baseless attack by Maia, containing suppositions and false accusations by Maia which are totally groundless. But this is the big problem with some straights who claim to be Christian…they lump orientation together with actual sexual activity, attended of course by their biased assumptions. It seems that the only ‘side’ of this issue acceptable to church going straights is to rid homosexuals of their orientation and implant the straight orientation (somehow) to take its place. I say much luck to that. Following this reasoning it would also make sense to rid straight sinners (which are by far in the majority) of their orientation in order to prevent sins of adultery and fornication. I am getting to be old now, recently re baptized also of a sincere desire to follow the Lord and perfect character in His strength, knowing that a gay orientation has been a constant companion from the first awakening of sexual awareness, but also had ‘straight’ desires early on also, at least enough to father a couple sons and have sex more or less regularly with my wife for perhaps 35 years before medical conditions (hers and mine both) got in the way. I have not had a gay sexual encounter in quite a few years now, and will not by depending on His strength and power, prayer and study of the Word. I am celibate, and still with my wife of over 50 years, and I hid nothing from her. We are best friends in this old world. God bless your organization in the work of spreading the truth about those who struggle, and are filled with needless guilt and self hatred just for ‘being’. An orientation (gay OR straight) is NOT chosen.
Oh dear Lord…thank you for clarity. Inge…ive never heard anyone until now explain my plight. As you wrote I heard my life and struggle and path I’m on today. God has brought me thru thus far and I So love the Lord! I want to do all He bids me to. Living my life on the fence of decision has been cruel for my soul. My spouse Silvia who was raised Catholic has embraced the SDA message. But it has been a very trying for her to see the beauty in our “most precious message” and experience hypocrisy about who is a worse sinner than who. We have been embraced by a pastor and his family at the Arroyo Grande, CA SDA church. We R walking gingerly. We pray that God will use our example of what a gay couple looks like in this welcoming church community. That we are a people that have a sincere desire for the transforming character of Jesus to be wrought in us. We praise God for pastor Josh who is courageous in embracing Silvia and myself. He is setting an example for his flock to love those who are called from the “highways and byways” into the wedding feast.
Thank you again for your article I will share it with my family and all who will listen. I also pray I can meet more SDA gay Christians in my area where I live. I also would welcome giving bible studies to anyone who wants to hear about the redeeming blood of Jesus and will believe so they too can have peace and live with Jesus for eternity.
God bless. Denise Herrera
I think you “got” my big point – that we are not saved by law keeping or performance of any point. There’s a wonderful freedom in letting go of performance-oriented religion and recognizing that we don’t have to earn God’s love. He already loves us, just as we are. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that He wants us to stay just as we are. If we want to go where Christ is now, we need to follow Him – and that means listening closely to what He has to say to us through His Word, through our mind as we spend time with Him in prayer and study, and through life experiences.
Christ’s life demonstrates that freedom doesn’t necessarily equate with a life of ease. He died on a cross, after all. And He asks us to carry our cross, if we want to follow Him. (See Mark 8:34) So what does that mean in your life and mine?
I believe there’s more in the post on this page and the comments than you have seen so far. But that’s okay. Read it again and pray for God’s guidance in your life.
Just one question to consider, Why do you focus on the gay label? It has a lot of baggage that may not be your baggage.
May God bless you as you follow Him and seek His will for your lives.
There’s not a lot on the site, GayAdventist.net, but I really recommend this: “The Secret of a Deep Love for Jesus.” It resonates with me at a deep level. It is, after all, all about love. We love Him, because He first loved us. And because we love Him, we are enabled to love others with the same kind of love – a love that is different from the usual kind of human “love” that has a lot of selfishness in it.
I’m certain , I know that these people who support this immoral lifestyle are not Seventh Day Adventist. God is specific about what He requires from us. He has clearly stated the behavior that His children who are called by His name will exhibit.
These people have infiltrated the church and have sown seeds of distribution.
However, God’s church will stand the test. Sometimes Satan will have us believe that the ship is sinking in this storm of immorality . This ship never sink, it will rock in every direction but ‘with Christ in ths vessel, we will smile at the storm.
I love my Church. This is God’s church, it will prevail. I’m praying that all those who are in this immoral and disgusting life style will repent before the day of burning comes.