Beloved and valued people who identify as homosexual,
I’m sorry for the way some people who claim to identify with Christ have treated you.
You deserve to the same excellent customer service that we all desire from restaurants and bakeries. Our friendship should not be off-limits to you. You shouldn’t have to wonder if you are welcome to enter a building where broken people meet. You, too, were made in God’s image. This image demands our respect and love, and sometimes we act as if it’s invisible.
It’s shameful that we point to the speck in your eye, but fail to see the log in our own. We often fail to remember that adulterers, people full of lust, gluttons and slanderers are included in the same list (1 Cor 6:8-11) that we use to condemn you. Can you imagine us having the same passionate disagreement about over-eating as homosexuality? Looking in the mirror is too painful for most of us.
Our desire to “fix” you tends to drown our desire to love you. We ask you weird questions like when you became homosexual. Chances are we’d be hard pressed to remember the first time we ate too much. We fail to ask how the stigma attached to homosexuality has affected you. The anguish you have experienced from the treatment of others remains unnoticed. You desire a safe place absent of apathy and persecution. We should be able to provide that.
Truth is, we’re more alike than different. All of us have struggled with sexual sin. Lust has weaved its viscous web far and wide. The porn industry generates billions of dollars of profit each year. Millions of people (including church attenders and leaders) are trapped in this soul-murdering addiction.
I am not minimizing the seriousness of any of the sins mentioned in this article. The Bible quite clearly states that the act (not the temptation) of sex with a member of the same gender is not acceptable. God has determined this act to be more ruinous than beneficial. Engaging in lust (mentally having sex) also damages our souls and relationships. Any form of sex outside of marriage can be destructive.
Sexual sin is unique. First Corinthians 6:18 says, “All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body.” The roots of sexual sin grow deeper and stronger in our hearts than other kinds of sin. Therefore, sexual sin is incredibly more laborious and agonizing to remove. The removal of sexual sin requires a secure identity in God, being completely aware of His love for us. Decreasing the power of temptation is impossible without constant, honest communication with God. A faulty memory of His grace will send us spiraling deeper into sin.
Porn addict doesn’t have to be our identity. Our adultery doesn’t have to define us. Christ can conquer the homosexual urges that compose who we are. There will be stumbling and hiccups. Identities do not metamorphose instantly. But God’s unchanging, faithful love is the most powerful change catalyst in the cosmos. We can find no better place to form our identities.