In my struggle with homosexuality, I came to a crossroads. I had to choose between serving my desires or serving my God – and the Bible told me that if I truly loved my God, I would obey Him. Obedience is to Him my sacrifice of love! So, I made the decision that even if I always struggled, I would continually surrender my desires to Him. That meant no matter what – even if it meant celibacy – living fully given to Jesus was my only desire!
I began to count myself blessed that I had something – a thorn in my flesh, if you will – that would push me back to Jesus over and over and over again. I was blessed because I understood the depth of my dependence on God better than many others who did not have the struggle I did.
I read about Paul’s “thorn in the flesh,” and truly identified (2 Corinthians 12). I had asked God to “take it away” many times, but He had not provided me with the instant cure I longed for. So, like Paul, I came to a place where I understood that His grace would be sufficient for me. In the moments where I faced onslaughts of temptation or overwhelming moments of weakness, I would cry out in my mind, “JESUS! I thank You that Your grace is enough for me right now!” And, whenever I cried out to Him, His power was always made perfect in my weakness!!! Just like the Book says! 🙂
When I fell – and fall I did – inevitably I would begin chastising myself, replaying my failure over and over again in my mind. In those moments, the Spirit of God would gently remind me, “There is now no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus. You are in Me. I don’t condemn You. Just come to me now, and remember to come to me next time. You can’t do this alone – and you don’t have to! I am here. Remember? I am with you!”
While learning to depend on His strength rather than my own, I was also holding onto the promise that He who began a good work in me would be faithful to complete it (Philippians 1:6)!
The same is true for all of you, friends. His grace is always sufficient and so close at hand when You call on Him! No temptation will ever come upon you that He will not faithfully give you the strength to overcome, if only you open yourself up to Him in the moment of need (1 Corinthians 10:13).
Some of my friends who struggle with homosexuality say things like, “It’s so unfair that God would ask me to deny myself romantic companionship when all of my heterosexual friends can enjoy that!” However, the moment we begin trying to rationalize or validate our temptations, our eyes have slipped off of God and we are building an idol. “I know best,” we are saying to God. But, those who are wise in their own eyes are fools before God.
Our struggle – be it homosexuality, addiction, pride, or whatever – is meant to push us to our knees before God. If these struggles raise our fists in defiance, we are not being led by the Spirit of God. Only when we come to Him as we are, His needy children, can He sweep us into His merciful, healing embrace.
And He will.
“Whoever exalts himself will be humbled; and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.”