Same Sex Attraction: Josh’s story
I was in my mid-twenties when I fully accepted I was attracted to men. The following years involved much confusion, discouragement, anger and doubt as I worked through what this meant for me as a Christian and what my future would look like as a single, celibate man. One of the biggest challenges for me was this overwhelming feeling of shame because of my same-sex attraction (SSA). In the beginning I thought that God must hate me for being attracted to men and I felt disgusting that I even had that sexual desire. I couldn’t even talk to God or other people about my attraction because I felt so ashamed. I wondered what I had done wrong to have this attraction, and I didn’t know how to please God and have this attraction at the same time.
There was this weight on me that I didn’t live up to God’s standards of sexuality. I felt I had let God and other people down because my life as a single, celibate Christian did not reflect what other people expected from me, which was to be straight, get married and have children. Thankfully, over the years the Lord has revealed to me through his Word and other faithful believers that because of the Fall we all have been impacted by sin in every area of our lives, including our sexuality. Romans 8:22-23 says that creation groans to be set free from the Fall and we also groan to be made right because of how sin has affected our hearts and our bodies.
There isn’t a single person whose sexuality hasn’t been affected by sin. No one’s sexuality honors God. But yet, because of Christ I know that there is now no condemnation for me because I am in Christ Jesus (Rom. 8:1). I have been washed in the blood of Christ, sanctified by His Spirit and Justified in Jesus name, I am not my sexual attractions (1 Cor. 6:11). In Christ I am complete and whole. I am not complete because I am made straight or that I am married with two kids, a dog and live in the suburbs. I am complete and perfect because I am in Christ, and he is in me. I still have SSA, but my attractions do not tell me who I am. God tells me who I am, and he says that I am his beloved son in whom he is well pleased (Mark 1:11).
-Josh Conwell, Biblical Counselor