In my post My Lingering Question I asked, “What did my sexuality need to be redeemed from, and what was it going to be restored to?” As I concluded I needed to be redeemed from self-preservation, that in turn brought to the forefront the question, What was God going to restore me to? Which caused a great deal of angst within me. Early on in my walk of faith many of my well-meaning Christian friends strongly suggested that as a Christian I was instantly healed and now attracted to men. Some went so far as to declare I would marry and have children. My sarcastic self always responded with, “Well, that would be miraculous.” They were unwittingly implying it’s as simple as flipping a switch.
In truth, I feared the implication of those words, as my attractions had not changed and if my friends were right, then I was doomed to a life of misery. You see, I deeply resented men and kept my distance from them both physically and emotionally. I couldn’t conceive of being physically intimate with a member of the opposite gender. Also, biologically I could no longer have children and had never desired to have any of my own. Their suggestions were nonsensical and hurtful. It caused yet another wall between myself and Christians. Furthermore, I saw God’s intended design for sexuality as one-dimensional, and that was people were created for the sole purpose of reproducing. I felt like an outsider within the Christian community, an outcast in the gay community, and alienated from God.
At the time, it seemed to me the word “restored” implied I was going to be restored to being a straight woman, married and barefoot and in the kitchen, and I wanted nothing to do with any of it. It was during this season of my life that I was coming to terms with where I landed theologically on the issues of marriage, gender and sexuality. I best fit in with those who identified as gay Christians, yet I was never completely able to fully embrace this ideology based on what I was reading in the Bible.
What I was beginning to understand was that God created human sexuality and gender as good gifts, and that sexuality is part of our personhood. God’s intended design for sexuality and gender are an expressions of the Imago Dei [image of God] on earth and that the marriage union between one man and one woman is the most intimate expression of God’s image within us.
In retrospect the resolution of my faith and sexuality and the lingering question of what God was restoring me to, have His fingerprints all over it. I had to reach a place where I could recognize that human sexuality was impacted by sin. As a result we humans embrace and express sexuality and gender in dysfunctional ways God never intended us to, such as pornography, sex outside of marriage, adultery, same-sex attractions, gender confusion, sexual assault, child abuse, domestic violence, and physical dominance among other things.
What I came to recognize was that my personhood and identity had been buried beneath my sexual identity as a lesbian. I saw that my personhood and true identity needed to be unearthed, reclaimed, and restored back from the miry effects of the fall and sin into the original integrity and beauty that God intended me to reflect to the world around me. Foremost, it was how I viewed myself that needed to be restored. In addition, how I viewed both men and women needed to be restored.
In my next post we will take a closer look at the act of restoration.
Thanks for following my journey,