My Journey Thus Far as a Bi-Romantic Christain

My Journey Thus Far as a Bi-Romantic Christain

A remember of the LGBTQ+ and a daughter of God
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Hi, my name is Abigail Bowles and I am a bi-romantic Christian. Now I’m sure what your feeling right now after hearing that is confusion. Well that’s exactly how I was feeling the fall of 2015. I had recently just started struggling with severe depression. Through that struggle I had started to realize that I wasn’t straight, but I had no idea what to do.

I had accepted Jesus Christ as my lord and savior when I was 9 years old. He had always given me hope and strength when I had none. I knew God was righteous and merciful, yet the world had been spreading God’s hate and scorn for the LGBTQ+ ever since I could remember. So, what could I do?

I remember sitting in my room one day and praying to God for help. I was begging for the love he had always shown me but this time I didn’t think I was worth his compassion. I was wrong. The next couple of days God decided to inscribe words of encouragement and love onto my heart. He was showing me just how much he cared about me and he continues to do so. That year I not only learned who I was as a person, but I also grew to know God in such a better light. But my journey didn’t stop there.

A couple of months later my Senior year was on the horizon. I was as nervous as a musician without her instrument, (I play the clarinet). I was only just starting to feel comfortable in my own skin and now I had to get through my last year of high school without exploding into a million pieces of shame and humiliation. But the exact opposite seemed to happen. The more honest I was about myself the more people seemed to understand. Not only did I suddenly become extremely popular but now I had my own peers coming out to me. I started to realize that God was using me to show others the same kind of love he had shown me.

Yet it wasn’t long until College seemed to be the topic of every conversation. I knew I wanted to be an animator and my heart was set on the very liberal and LGBTQ+ supportive Ball State University. But on a whim, I decided to visit Huntington University the day before I was supposed to take a tour at Ball State. Once again God decided to turn my world upside down.

Almost as soon as I stepped onto Huntington I felt like I belonged. The community was so loving towards me and the animation program was the perfect fit for me. I just knew that I had to go here. But once again I was terrified.

What would people think of me going here? Would they hate me? Bully me? Call me hypocritical? Huntington University is a private Christian college, so I suddenly felt very out of place. God was sending me on a quest that I thought I just couldn’t take. I prayed and prayed for a sign on what to do and I kept receiving the same answer over and over. Why would I set all of this up for you if I didn’t think you were capable of it? And so, knowing that God would get me through this like everything else I signed up for classes three months later.

My first month at Huntington was a breeze! I was so excited about the opportunities that God was sending my way and was having such a good experience that I knew I had made the right choice. But after four weeks at college I hit a wall. I had people telling me how wrong I was and that I needed to repent. How could God love me if I was so open and active in what was obliviously a sin?

I was devastated. I was once again lost and hurt. I knew that God loved me for who I was but it’s kind of hard to believe that when you have people telling you the exact opposite on a daily basis. Once again, I looked to God for strength, asking him what I should do? His answer? Keep your faith in me and I will follow through.

I’d experienced hate before and brushed it off just like that. So why was this any different? It wasn’t.

When you’re trying to figure out how you identify you try on a bunch of labels so that you can find the one that fits just right. Some feel okay. Others not so much. But when you find the one that just screams you, nothing can make you forget that high. You feel like you’re on top of the world and nothing can knock you down. I think that’s a lot like faith. You try to hold onto it but sometimes you really want to let go because it’s too hard or the opinions of non-believers rock your boat. But eventually you realize that your faith has always been a part of you just like your identity. They both make up so much of you and yet that’s only two pieces of the puzzle. There is so much more to me than my identity and my faith. Am I proud of the fact that I am Bi? Oh heck yeah! Just like I’m proud of my profound love for Jesus. But that’s not the whole story.

Only last week did I finally come out to the rest of my family members and friends. I will be the first to say that it's not a easy thing to come out. I'm very fortune that my family is extremely supportive and love me for me. But not everyone is that lucky.

People will ask you the same questions over and over again. They'll assume stereotypes about you that are no where near true. And you don't even want to know the number of gay jokes and puns you'll have to endure.

However my recommendation is that embrace it. Embrace every part of being who you truly are. The good, the bad, and the downright messy. If you come at it with love then I think other people will too. Now that's not always the case but bottom line not everyone is going to accept you. And guess what? That's okay because the person standing next to them is more than happy to love you for you.

Now I don't know what my future as a bi Christian is going to hold for me. I still have a long way to go before I figure everything out. I mean jeez I’m only a college freshman what do you expect from me? Point is not everything is mapped out and color coded like tomorrow’s History homework. And that’s part of the adventure! There are still pieces of me that I’m missing and that’s okay. Because with each piece that I find I not only grow my love for God, but I also grow to appreciate and love myself. I am a beautiful piece of artwork made by the Lord himself just like everyone is. So, here’s my advice. Stand tall, keep your faith, love everyone you meet and be yourself. Because God loves you for that exact reason. And so do I.

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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20 Rules Of A Southern Belle

It is more than just biscuits and grits.
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These unwritten rules separate the people that move to the South and were born and raised in the South. If you were born and raised in a small southern town, you either are a southern belle or hope you get to marry one. Their southern charm is hard to dislike and impossible to be taught.

1. Adults are to be answered with "Yes ma’am" and "Yes sir."

Whether it’s your parents, grandparents, or the person that checks you out at the grocery store, always say yes ma’am.

2. Always write a thank you note.

For any and everything. No gesture is too small.

3. Expect a gentleman to hold the door open and pull out your chair.

Chivalry is not dead; you just need to find the right guy.

4. All tea is sweet.

Below the Mason-Dixon Line, tea is made no other way.

5. Don’t be afraid to cook with butter.

I’ve never met a good cook that didn’t giggle a little.

6. “Coke” refers to all sodas.

Here in the south, this means all types of sodas.

7. Pearls go with anything — literally anything

And every southern belle is bound to have at least one good set.

8. "If it’s not moving, monogram it."

9. Pastels are always in fashion.

And they look good on almost everyone.

10. And so is Lilly Pulitzer.

11. Curls, curls and more curls.

The bigger the hair, the closer to Jesus.

12. If you are wearing sandals, your toenails should be done.

13. Never ever ever wear white shoes, pants, dresses, or purses after Labor Day or before Easter.

Brides are the only exception. Yes we actually do follow this rule.

14. Never leave the house without lipstick.

A little mascara and lipstick can work miracles.

15. Always wear white when you walk down the aisle.

Weddings are taken very seriously here in the South, and they should be nothing but traditional.

16. Southern weddings should always be big.

The more bridesmaids the better.

17. Saturdays in the fall are reserved for college football.

Whether you spend it tailgating in that college town or watching the big game from your living room. You can guarantee that all southerner’s eyes will be glued to the game.

18. Sunday is for Jesus and resting.

19. Learn how to take compliments curiously.

20. Have class, always.

Cover Image Credit: Daily Mail

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I'm Questioning My Sexuality, And I'm OK With That

I think I am bisexual and that's ok.

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I have had sex, kissed and dated many men throughout my life. I know that I like men.

But, I also like women as well.

Growing up in a home with strict parents, that were Christian, made me always think negatively about couples of the same sex. They stressed how I was going to marry a man and have children, but I am not sure if I want that. I am a Christian, as well, and I do believe that regardless of my choices... God will still love me. My choices, beliefs, and views are not the same as everyone else's, but I do not see an issue with being attracted to both genders

I never imagined myself considering a woman as a potential partner - until I kissed one, well... more than one. I tend to get a little crazy when I go out and party. I literally consider everyone my partner when I am under the influence, literally. If you compliment me... well then you are my significant other, period. But, one time I had a girl ask me to kiss her. I was slightly intoxicated, but I knew what she asked. I knew she wanted to kiss, and there was this part of me that wanted to as well. I thought it was the alcohol for a while, I am not into girls - like seriously.

There was another time, that involved alcohol when a girl wanted to kiss. I was aware of what was going on and proceeded to do it. I began to think that the liquor was an issue, I mean a lot of girls do this kind of stuff when they are drinking... but was it truly the alcohol?

One morning I was going to college and the thought overcame me. Am I bisexual? Do I like both genders? I tried to shake the thought, change the music, roll the windows down - I did everything I could to get my mind right, but it wouldn't. I decided to dive into the thought and realized that this was not the alcohol, this was not the late nights, lack of sleep or whatever else I blamed these actions on. I was attracted to women.

There is something you find in women that you will not find in a man.

1. women wear really good lip gloss, so the lips are warm, soft and have the perfect consistency of wetness (I did not like how that sounded)

2. women are gentle. Women care about your feelings and can tell when something is off, instantly. I want someone to pick up a vibe without me even telling them what is on my mind. Women hold you with soft hands, touch your face in a soothing manner and they comfort you - especially when men are acting crazy.

3. women are beautiful and so unique. It is something about some thick thighs and a nice rack that will get my attention - yes men, we look too.

But, I also like my men - especially my frat boys. Men can handle me, my attitude and desires - I cannot just toss them out to the wolves.

I decided that I would become more open with my sexuality and see what happens. It is a scary thought of not being accepted by my friends, family, and others - but it is my happiness that I would rather focus on. I do not want my friends to ever feel uncomfortable about getting undressed in front of me, men thinking I am going to be down for a threesome, or judgment - but I also understand that this is something I could face.

I am questioning my sexuality & I am not ashamed.

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