I was on a very short walk from my apartment to the college campus when I saw the protesters- ten or so men and women holding their signs up so everyone could read them. I didn’t particularly want to read them and from across the street I almost couldn’t read them, but I could make out two words that appeared on almost every sign: “God” and “Gays.”
I crossed the street pretending not to notice the protesters, but the fact was I had noticed them and they had captured my interest. I awkwardly stalled when I reached the other sidewalk- I could turn left towards the protesters or right towards my original destination. I don’t like strangers and I don’t like conflict so I would rather have turned right, but my feet turned left, almost involuntarily, and I approached the group.
Once my nervous sweating stopped and my voice steadied, I had a long conversation with one of the men. His sign read “God Hates Fags.” I tried not to look at his sign.
I asked him several questions about what he believed, and it turns out we had a lot in common: we both believed in God and Jesus, the fallenness of humanity, Heaven and Hell, the cross, forgiveness, salvation, the Gospel…we read the same Bible, we believed the same fundamentals, we even agreed that homosexuality is sinful. But he told me all gays go to Hell and I could not disagree with him more.
Why wasn’t I the one holding a hateful sign beside a busy street? I was troubled and I was stumped. How could I know for sure this man was wrong? And then it came to me- I think God might have whispered the next question into my ear,
-“So, is Jesus just not enough to save homosexuals from their sin?”
-“Pretty much,” was the protester’s answer.
There it was- his glaring mistake, suddenly so evident. This man was selling Jesus short and treating homosexuality as some sort of super-sin. Romans 8: 38-39 says, “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Neither will homosexuality.
Almost two years later, my own homosexual tendencies surfaced. I started looking at gay porn, I liked it, and I lusted after men, I fantasized, I masturbated. I knew I was living in sin, and for a minute there, I was really afraid I’d done the unforgiveable. Then I remembered what God taught me on that sidewalk: Jesus triumphs over ALL sin. When we are clothed in Christ’s righteousness, there is nothing unforgivable or irreparable. The overwhelming solace I felt made me so thankful I had turned left that day.
So, that particular short walk was the beginning of a long walk- a journey really- one I’m still on. I made the decision not to practice homosexuality and I am trusting God to change my desires as I change my actions. For those doing the same- be encouraged- there is so much victory in Christ and God can help you break any stronghold- be patient and steadfast. I realize also that many have made the opposite decision- to embrace and practice homosexuality. Even so, God will not desert you and Jesus is still for you. You are His- you are deeply loved and nothing will change that. Do not let anyone convince you otherwise. Don’t believe their picket signs.