It's Sunday morning around 12:45 a.m. I was online searching for information on quick and painless ways to end my life and found your website. I won't lie to you; it piqued my interest. A little about me: I was physically and sexually abused as a teen; lived in a slew of group homes where the abuse continued; homelessness motivated me to prostitute myself with men by my 20th birthday and; I've visited [all] kinds of churches and never understood what it means to be a Christian. The behavior I've observed and encountered with Christians was worst than any secular horror flick I've seen. Evil. Hateful. Greedy. Hypocritical. Judgmental. The condition of their... unbelievable. I questioned if god could love me because many pastors and their followers called me an "abomination" and "unclean" after I admitted to being gay, but they didn't hear me when I asked how could I receive deliverance. They just kept attacking me. When they grew tired, they took a break and others resumed attacking me. I was later assaulted by two Christian men. No Bible versus. Just a fist in my face. Unfortunately, the violence didn't eradicate the gay desires. Anyway, last July, I had a minor stroke. More drama. Full-blown AIDS came next. Consequences really do engender actions from our behavior. Doctors said I'd get my wish... death. The disease was destroying me inside and I never knew it. Christians hated me even more. I called a few churches to see if pastors or anybody would visit me. "You reap what you sow, young man." I ruined my life. Today, doctors can't find the virus in my body. They say it is "undectable." I no longer have TIA's which lead to having strokes. Honestly, I don't know if these miraculous events are coincidence or from God.
Today, I'm an entertainment publicist. I work with lots of high-profile actors, recording artists, politicians, pastors and authors. My job is to make their business everybody's business. The Christian and gospel music industry is no different than the secular music business. Its all about making money and clever marketing to do it.
You see, I have a wonderful job. To some, a wonderful life. I'm empty. Depressed. I'm tired of clergy lying to me. How could a pastor tell me it's okay to be gay because God is love? I can't handle being gay and don't know how to not be gay. I've laid it all out to God. I've tried praying and fasting and attending church. I even accepted Christ. Years have passed. Nothing. Obviously, I missing a major point here, but just don't know what it is. I ask God to take my life, but that hasn't happened. My years of being on this planet has shown me that the devil is very concerned about my life. That is, destroying it. But God seems very sloooow responding to me, if, at all. How can a God whose love for me is beyond my comprehension be slow in rescuing me? Yet, the devil is DSL quick in trying to rescue me with deceit masking it as truth.
I don't believe that I have anything to live for. My suicidal thought are more aggressive and I'm scared of myself. Just when I thought I had enough nerve to kill myself, one of the devotions on your website underscored scripture saying that I would still be judged by God. Scary stuff.
My response is in Green:
I am glad you found my site. My heart goes out to you. I don't know how much of my site you had a chance to read, but if you read much you will know that I am a pretty blunt person sometimes. I don't candy coat things and because of that I some times come off as not caring, but that is not true. God has taught me many lessons and is still teaching me each day. I too have seen the apostasy in the church. Many people claim to be Christians but they aren't. If they don't show God's love then they are not His child: (1 John 2:3-6 NIV)  We know that we have come to know him if we obey his commands.  The man who says, "I know him," but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him.  But if anyone obeys his word, God's love is truly made complete in him. This is how we know we are in him:  Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did.
Anyway, I just wanted to say that to let you know that those people who hate you and who refused to come visit you were not following Christ. From reading your letter, I am sure this is not you, but many people judge God on the way the people who claim to know Him act. Please don't think that God does not care about you, He loves you.
Being the blunt person I am, let me start at the beginning and just put down a foundation. Your letter did not give me the impression that you blame your past for everything, but I still want to address that. Many people justify their sin by pointing to how they were treated and claiming that is what caused their sins. That is not true, the evil fallen heart that we all are born with is what causes us to sin. We may be led down a certain path by our past experiences but sin is always from our own evil hearts. This is important because until we realize that one day we will stand before a Holy God and answer for our actions by ourselves without being able to point at anyone else, we cannot truly come to the peace, forgiveness and love that He has to offer us.
All sin merits death to the person who commits it. Homosexuality is no worse a sin than stealing or lying. Not when you look at the judgment for those sins, they are all the same. Total separation from God and His love for eternity. The only hope any of us have is that hope which is based in Jesus Christ. God loves us all and He sent His Son to die in our place. We just have to agree with God that we deserve death for our actions and then accept His free gift of eternal life.
I am pretty sure you already know all that and have done so, but like I said I have to put down that foundation to build on. I won't go any further in my condemnation of those Christians you have seen and heard. I know they are out there and God will judge them one day. We are called to come out and be separate from the world, not to beat them at their own game. We must still live in the world, that is our mission field, but we should not be contaminated by it. Well I said I wasn't going to talk about them and I did anyway, but now I will go forward.
You said you hate being gay but don't know what to do about it. I will try to help you. I have never been gay, nor have I ever even had the temptation, but I have been a sinner so I still understand on a basic level what you are going through. Let me give you a URL to check out: http://www.stonewallrevisited.com It is a Christian site, which has many testimonials from former gays. I hope it will help you understand that you can be delivered and that there are support groups out there.
Now this might sound like a good time for me to stop, but I think I can also help you. As I said I have never been gay, but I have struggled with my own sins. I can remember hating my life so badly. I wanted to do what was right but I just could not pull it off. I would beg God to take the temptation away so that I would not sin anymore, but it kept coming back and I kept going right back as if I was a slave to that sin.
You know what? I was a slave to that sin. It just took me forever to understand it, but I found the answer in God's word. See my problem was that I was trying to control my evil desires and asking God to help me. I wanted Him to make me strong enough to resist sin and to live a holy life for Him. That is a great place to start but it misses the point. We are unable to live holy lives because we are slaves to sin.
I got to the point where I was not sure if I was even a Christian. I wanted to serve God and be clean and holy but I just could not do it. One day I just cried out to God and told Him that if He wanted me to be holy then He would have to do it for me because I knew I was not able to. It was like the weight of the world had been lifted off my shoulders. That was what God had been waiting for, for me to come to the realization that I could not do it, that I needed to give complete control of my life to Him. After all if I could live a holy life without His help, than I didn't need Jesus Christ in the first place. Of course that is a lie.
Let me show you a passage that helped change my life: (Romans 6:16-18 NIV)  Don't you know that when you offer yourselves to someone to obey him as slaves, you are slaves to the one whom you obey-whether you are slaves to sin, which leads to death, or to obedience, which leads to righteousness?  But thanks be to God that, though you used to be slaves to sin, you wholeheartedly obeyed the form of teaching to which you were entrusted.  You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness.
Take a long hard look at what it says. We will never be in control, we will either be slaves to sin or slaves to righteousness. God won't help us control our desires or resist temptation because it will only give us the illusion that we are doing it ourselves. He will make us holy only after we come to Him and give Him complete control of our lives. This is exactly what Jesus was saying when He said that if anyone wants to follow Him they must deny them self and pick up their cross daily. People think that their cross is their weight, or their mother-in-law, etc... No that is not our cross. What Jesus was saying is that we have to put our flesh or our self to death daily and allow Him to live through us. Allow Him to be in control. He will not be our co-pilot, He will be the pilot or nothing.
Before that day, when temptation came my way, I would not be able to even think about resisting, I would be carried away with it and after it was over I would hate myself and I would beg God to forgive me. Since that day, when I gave Him complete control of my life, it is different. I am still tempted but it is in a much more detached way. I now am able to think more clearly, and make a real decision; do I want to sin or do I want to call on God to take over and allow me to resist. I don't want to glorify my sin, but I will tell you that it had to do with pornography and lustful thoughts. It is as addictive as alcohol. I praise God that He delivered me, but again only after I gave up and gave Him control of my whole life and quit holding back.
I know I keep saying give God control but I have not explained it. It is easy to explain but hard to do. We all want control of our lives. We want everything in a nice little container that we are in control of. That includes God, we want Him around and we even want to have a relationship with Him, but we want to set up boundaries. We want to control this little part and He can have the rest. He won't play that game, it is all or nothing. You can't put your sinful nature 'half' to death, it is either put to death or it is alive. This is a struggle, but it is one that God will enable us to win if we are willing to allow Him. Each day we have to decide whom we will follow, our own desires or God. That is where deliverance comes from, it comes from willingly being a slave to righteousness and giving our whole selves to God.
(Hebrews 4:15-16 NIV)  For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are-yet was without sin.  Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
Look at that passage very well too. It says that Jesus was tempted in every way. He can sympathize with me over pornography, lust, alcohol abuse or whatever because He was tempted but did not sin. He can sympathize with you over homosexuality because He was tempted but did not sin. When we give Him control, He can keep us from sinning too. This is what used to be called sanctification. Well it still is called that, but you don't hear much about it anymore. It is when God cleans us up and takes that evil nature away so that we are able to follow Him, but He won't do that until we are willing to give Him 100%.
Well I don't want this to get to be too long, so I will close now. I will pray for you and I would love to talk to you more, so if you feel like writing please do. I don't have the answers, but I know who does!! God loves you, don't ever forget that.
E-Mail Ralph (whose comments are in green)
|911 - God's Help Line||Articles||Apologetics||Book Reviews|
|Contemplating Suicide?||Discipleship||Eternal Security||How to know Jesus|
|Help for the Cutter||In Memory||Marine Bloodstripes||Police Humor|
|Police Memorial||SiteMap||Statement of Faith||Testimonies|
|Thoughts to Ponder||True Life Stories||Vet's Memorial||Why I Have a Page|