Tuesday, December 1, 2009

World AIDS Day

I've tried to keep busy today but it hasn't helped much; my mind begins to wander to those pictures in my mind of those that I have lost from this disease. My grandmother died in 1984 before it was called AIDS. The technical term back then was GRID (Gay Related Immune Deficiency). I've thought of Gary McClain who was the organ player at our church, we lost him in 1985. Then there was 20 year old Darrell who committed suicide because of his infection, only to find out after his autopsy that his diagnosis was wrong. I remember the young gay man a friend of mine came across at work, he had committed suicide but not before mutilating his body first. In his suicide note he mentioned that he was gay and had only had sex one time. That's all it takes.

I have also been thinking of the many people who have had to suffer above what the disease did to them because of the people around them; especially the church and Christians, or so called Christians. The countless numbers of stories of gay men whose family threw them away upon learning of their disease. The men who had never even told their family that they were gay let alone HIV+, only to have their families not even claim their body from the morgue upon learning why they died.

I have tried to understand, but I just can't seem to. I didn't understand when it happened to me 19 years ago and I don't understand it now. Maybe one day I will. A guy can be a hardened serial killer, on death row and the night of his execution total strangers will hold a candle light vigil to protest the cruelty of putting another human being to .death. His mother will hold a picture telling all who'll listen just how wonderful he was. However, let a straight A student, dedicated, loves his family, loves God and people also. Kind, warm, caring, compassionate, intelligent, well mannered, well adjusted. But let that gay kid tell people that he's gay and he is disowned by his family, rejected by his church and harassed by total strangers and politicians alike; all in the name of God, to the point of doing horrible things to his mind and body and often destroying his life or out right taking of his life, and society doesn't blink an eye, his family forgets about him, and the church decries it as a victory.

God I just don't understand!

Friday, August 14, 2009

New Incentive

Hey folks, I had a doctor's appointment yesterday and my A1C was too high. He didn't yell at me, of course this is only our second visit with him. Actually he did something more motivational, I hope, than yelling. He said 1 word to me that perked up my ears. What's the word you ask? "Insulin"!
If I don't get my weight under control, it's in my near future. I don't want this, I can beat this, I can do this.
Now comes the time, where I have to do this more because I want to look better, or even feel better. Now, I am afraid it's becoming more of a live or die soon kind of thing.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Leaving Homosexuality

What does that even mean? I opened my mail box today and the only thing in it was the monthly letter from Exodus International. I usually throw it away but I opened it this time to read the familiar ex-gay spin. Something Alan Chambers said in his letter jumped out at me; he stated that when he started out 18 years ago he envisioned his circumstances being much different than they are today. He imagined them erased and that he would be a typical heterosexual male(July 2009, Exodus monthly newsletter). That's what I expected too, as did most of the ex-gays that I am familiar with. It didn't happen, and it isn't going too.

So what changed, well definitions changed that's what. Heterosexuality was no longer the opposite of homosexuality, holiness was. How does that "theology" fit in to a group who says that they believe in a person's right to self determination. You have an impressionable gay teen who really wants to be acceptable to God, family and church; how does his ability to self determine stand up against such rhetoric? How about the Christian parents, totally devastated by the news that the son or daughter whom they love with all their being is gay or lesbian? They obviously turn to their spiritual leader who will look to CBN, Focus on the Family, or Exodus and this is the rhetoric that they get.

They will turn to Exodus in hopes of their child being "healed". They believe them at their words. "We left homosexuality behind", only to find out that what they have done is denied those attractions and desires. Sorry folks, denial is not healing. Getting married to a woman when you really want to marry your best man, is not healing.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Freshman English

I have recently returned to college and am working on a degree in Information Systems. Now I haven't been to college since 1990 and I am certainly feeling my age, lol. I had almost 100 hours towards a Bachelors Degree in Pastoral Ministry, but only 9 hours transferred in and none of those were for Freshman English 1. I am now retaking it and my professor, who seems like a really nice guy, is causing me brain freeze. You know the kind, it's like an ice cream headache. Anyhow, I am having to do a lot of writing, which is good, so I will be doing some extra blogging on who knows what. So stay tuned.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Romans, Paul and Judging

I am setting here doing some reading and studying, on hell actually.  It’s something that’s been on my heart for awhile.  Don’t worry I am not that strange, I will post about it at a later time.  Anyhow I came across a few verses, that I have heard all my life and preached a few sermons on and some thoughts popped into my head that I wanted to share.

Romans 14:11-13

  For it is written, As I live, saith the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God. 
  So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God. 
  Let us not therefore judge one another any more: but judge this rather, that no man put a stumbling block or an occasion to fall in his brother's way.

especially verse 13- Let us not judge one another anymore,but judge this rather, that no man put a stumbling block or an occasion to fall in his brother’s way.

  (I have inserted the Greek from Strong’s dictionary)

Properly to distinguish, that is, decide (mentally or judicially); by implication to try, condemn, punish: - avenge, conclude, condemn, damn, decree, determine, esteem, judge, go to (sue at the) law, ordain, call in question, sentence to, think.

How many have been driven away from God or kept away from Him because of the behavior and treatment that they have received at the hands of so called Christians.  The church, especially the Evangelical and the fundamentalist branches are full of judgments and condemnations of people and entire groups of people. 

The church has come along way in regards to it’s treatment of racial minorities and women, there’s still a lot to do, but progress has been made.  It’s now time for the church to stop being a stumbling block or a hindrance to gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered people from coming into the family of God. 

Friday, June 5, 2009

Listening to Jesus

I’m definitely frustrated, bordering on being just plain angry.  This is been something tha I have been contemplating on and praying about for a while.  Certainly more contemplating then praying, sorry to say.  We started attending church when I was 8 years old, I am now almost 41.  I’ll let you do the math, as I hate math.  I started preaching revivals at 17 went off to bible college and after 3 1/2 years of college I dropped out before being kicked out.  I bought into all that I was told about being gay, never investigated for myself because after all, my denominational officials, my fellow students and professors, my friends wouldn’t steer me wrong would they?  I mean my brothers in Christ, who I studied with, prayed with, cried with, laughed with, counseled with wouldn’t just write me off.  Would they? 

Now on one hand I understand that most Christians don’t really study the scriptures, they may read them, if they do even that, but to really study them, the original languages, their historical context, etc. most Christians don’t do that.  They let their ministers do that for them!  So when the ministers, for whatever reasons don’t, the average congregant takes what comes from the pulpit as the “gospel truth” when it is really an interpretation.  I don’t want to sound arrogant, I don’t expect everyone to come up with the same outcome of those scriptures that I did.  I will say that I could be wrong, I don’t believe that I am, but that is where faith and allowing the Holy Spirit to lead a person comes into the equation. 

You don’t have to agree with me, you don’t have to like me, but you don’t get to tell me that I am not a Christian.  You don’t get to judge me that way, Jesus himself said so:

Don't condemn others, and God won't condemn you. God will be as hard on you as you are on others! He will treat you exactly as you treat them. You can see the speck in your friend's eye, but you don't notice the log in your own eye. How can you say, "My friend, let me take the speck out of your eye," when you don't see the log in your own eye? You're nothing but show-offs! First, take the log out of your own eye. Then you can see how to take the speck out of your friend's eye.
(Mat 7:1-5)(Contemporary English Version)

I think the Christian church, the evangelical mainly and the fundamentalist especially, needs to get back to the teachings of Jesus.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Assumptions and wordplay

It’s no secret that I am gay, I don’t think it is anyhow, and also most who know me know that I was involved with the ex-gay movement for quite a long time before I was able to reconcile my faith with my sexuality.  I am not saying that anyone who holds to the ex-gay school of thought is wrong, each person must live his/her own life.  I don’t have the right nor the obligation to judge anyone’s life or behavior, as long as you are not going around bringing harm to people that is.  I try very hard not to judge you, I may not hang out with you, but I will do my very best to not judge you.  Now I have said that to say this, I have heard various people within leadership of the ex-gay movement talk about self actualization, and being free to live your life gay if you want to, that they exist to help those who struggle with unwanted homosexuality, etc. etc.  But I have noticed from their writings those subtle little messages that they pass along to their readers either knowingly or unwittingly, but conveyed anyhow.  For instance whenever they refer to a church that is primarily made up of gay and lesbian Christians is seems to be the “gay” church.  Or when they talk about  those of us who have been able to reconcile our Christianity with being lesbian, gay, or bisexual then they throw out words and phrases like, compromising, watering down the bible, settling for less than God’s best and their are others.

Let me say this, I don’t believe that I have settled for anything less than God’s best overall in my life.  Yes there are times when I chose my own agenda over what I believe God would have me chose but I definitely don’t believe that is the case in my accepting being gay.  I wish that those in the ex-gay crowd would say what they really mean to say, and please don’t assume that you speak for all of Christianity, because you don’t.  My relationship with Christ is just as valid as yours is.  I will leave you today with the words of Chuck Smith, Jr.  whose father founded the Calvary Chapel movement,  “Although the bible may be the inspired and infallible word of God, our interpretations of it are not. 

Until next time, God bless.



English 1104

I haven't posted in a while. I find it difficult to put my thoughts into words as my A.D.D. usually pops up and it gets messy and frustrating. I am having to take a Freshman English class over again because it didn't transfer in. I took it in 1987 at Jimmy Swaggart Bible College and they hadn't gotten their accreditation from SACS. Anyhow, the English class is helping and I will try to make a more concerted effort to blog more. Not that anyone other than Rick is reading it. LOL

Saturday, April 25, 2009

It's been a long time since I posted, but I am not sure anyone is following it anyhow. But I am here as much for me if anything. In the last several days some horrific things have come out regarding gay men, primarily being tortured and killed in several middle eastern countries, especially Iraq. There is also a lot of unsettling things coming out of Uganda as well. I don't believe that anyone should sit by and allow this to continue silently. I don't care if you are gay, straight, Christian, atheist, or whatever. We need to contact our legislative representatives, the UN, human rights groups, etc. lets not allow these acts to go unnoticed or encouraged.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Those Mental Tapes we play in our mind

Why is it that the more negative messages we receive the more we hold on to them? I got a lot of bad messages growing up as a kid. From my dad who was never part of my life I got the message that I wasn't worth his time, and in turn I felt that I wasn't worth anyone's time. After all, your dad is supposed to be your biggest fan and when he isn't it must be your fault right? As a kid, I put that all on me, I didn't or couldn't put it on him. I know now that it wasn't about me, he was just a jerk. My step dad, who had issues of his own was extremely verbally, emotionally, and at times physically abusive. Growing up I was told on mostly a daily basis that I was worthless, useless, no account and wouldn't amount to anything, etc etc etc. Now I know that he was messed up, but he messed me up! Big Time. How do you undue that stuff. I know in my head that I am a good person, worthy of good things and that those things aren't true, but in my heart I am not so sure. I do self talk, positive reaffirmation, and try to dwell on good things, but I am afraid that those deep seated beliefs are too elusive.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Gay Marriage

It's been a pretty good week for those of us who still believe in equality. The Iowa Supreme Court has unanimously ruled the ban on gay marriage to be unconstitutional and gay marriage to begin there in 3 weeks. Also this week the West Virginia state legislature voted down the Marriage Amendment that the WV Family Council wanted, however, after listening to their sound bites concerning the victory in Iowa I am sure they will be back again.
It's a big step forward in our equality but we have a ways to go.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Fairness WV

Apparently my last post was a tad premature. As soon as I posted it I saw a link on my own site for this group. Maybe things aren't as bad as I thought.

Really Discouraged Today

It seems as though there is no end in the future to all the anti gay rhetoric. Now my state, West Virginia, looks like it's going to be the next battle ground on the marriage/discrimination front. The Family Policy Council of West Virginia, which is aligned with Focus on the Family is lobbying the state to add a referendum on the ballot, Even though our governor, Joe Manchin has stated that our existing law is sufficient and no challenge has arisen. West Virginia doesn't have much of a gay community, at least that I have seen. I guess in Wheeling, Charleston, Morgantown, Parkersburg and a few other cities may have some but in the area I am located there doesn't seem to be much of anything.
Most of the "christians" in this state, at least the ones I know, blindly follow the likes of Dr. Dobson without much thought, you would think his words were as equal to Jesus'. Sometimes I just don't feel like there is much use in fighting this fight anymore. I often wonder why God allows people who I know love and follow Him and pray religiously, and are never moved to even consider this issue.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


Do you have a few pounds to shed or maybe, like me, you have a lot to lose. I need to drop about 55 lbs. It is the hardest thing I think I have ever tried. I am great about making plans and getting started, I am also the king of do overs. I can't ever seem to stay on track. I know what to do, but doing it is another matter entirely. I can't seem to stay away from food, at least the bad kind.
One of the coolest websites that I have found in a long time is Sparkpeople.com, it's a great community that allows you to network with people from your area and around the world. There's some great information on there and some really awesome tools to use. Oh yeah, it's free too.
check out their site.

Spark People

Friday, March 13, 2009

It's Time for the Gloves to come off- Part 1

Most of the ex-gays that you hear from will tell you that they left the "gay lifestyle" because they were unhappy with it. I understand the rationale, because most of the "testimonies" that you hear or read talk about how they were throwing themselves away in the bars, bookstores, promiscuity, and the debauchery that goes with a partying lifestyle (whether one be homosexual or heterosexual). For most that is the only exposure to being gay that they have, it was that way for me.
In 1990 I dropped out of bible college and left the ministry and yes, I threw myself full long into sex, drinking, promiscuity, overeating, making bad choices, etc. etc. I would occasionally attend the MCC church in Charlotte, NC but could never seem to reconcile being gay and being a Christian. It is a struggle that has taken about 18 years but has come around.

Exodus should quit demonizing

I just finished reading Alan Chamber's latest article for Charisma magazine and you know I have just about had all that I can take. Alan is the president of Exodus International, an umbrella organization for ex-gay ministries, and is becoming more and more politically involved even though they say they are not. Exodus practices doublespeak better than any D.C. politician I have ever witnessed. They say they believe in self determination for gays and ex-gays(meaning they should have the option to choose) but they work at every hand to take away the rights of those of us who want to live our lives the way we see fit. Ok, Alan I get it, you were not happy in the gay "lifestyle" as you call it. We get IT, We GET IT, WE GOT IT! but demonizing other people who don't share your interpretation of scripture is Wrong! Do you do that, oh yes and you're very good at it. Whenever you say that we, who disagree with you, are deceived or being lied to or are plain out being deceptive you demonize us and that is wrong of you.

Monday, March 2, 2009

What do you do when you're the ultimate oxymoron?

I have been wrestling with this question for a long time now. I really am the ultimate oxymoron, not the only one, but definitely I am one. I am an evangelical, Reagan conservative, Republican, and oh yeah, I am gay also. Most of the time I just don't fit it and I am still trying to find my place. I don't fit in at church because I have been able to reconcile my faith and my sexuality. I don't fit in to the gay community here, what there is of it. So I guess since I don't have a place to fit in, I need to make my own. So that is what I am in the process of doing now.