‘The entire Christian life bears the mark of the spousal love of Christ and Church.’(CCC 1617) Jesus gave all; on the Cross, He pledged Himself to us as Bridegroom to a Bride. There is no richer or deeper expression of spousal love than Jesus pouring out His life for us at Calvary. He forged a bond with us there that is like a marriage but actually much more. Our Creator vowed to make us His own through death; He released a river of blood, water and Spirit that has power to e
‘All who heard from the shepherds were amazed.’ (LK 2:18) ‘Being Christian is encounter with a Person, which gives life a new horizon and a decisive direction.’ Pope Emeritus Benedict Are we still amazed by Christ’s coming into our lives? Believe me, if we are not amazed than no-one else will be either. We must move beyond Christmas—the coming of Jesus—into Epiphany, the shining of His Glory upon our genuinely amazing lives. Stir it up, people. Provoke each other. Consider ho
‘Everything that affected Jesus affected His mother, yet no intimate understanding existed between them. His life was hers, yet constantly escaped her.’ (Romano Guardini, The Lord) ‘Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.’ (LK 2: 19) No more powerful bond exists than between mother and child; Mary, like all mothers, is significantly defined by her child. Yet the extraordinary nature of this Child set in motion a pattern that reveals the extraordinar
‘For Jesus Himself is our peace, who has made the two one, and who has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility…His purpose was to create in Himself one new humanity out of the two, thus making peace, and in this one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross.’ (Eph. 2: 14-16) Jesus gave us one goal—to become a chaste, trustworthy gift to either gender; He provides one path on which to become a mature expression of that gift. Together in Christ, we s
I am happy to announce the release of Desert Stream Ministries 2013 Mid-year Newsletter.
The newsletter features articles written by myself and Annette along with special contributions from friends of Desert Stream. In Intimate Authority, Tender Army, I write: Mary Magdalene is considered by the Roman Catholic Church to be the Apostle of Apostles. Why? The risen Christ revealed Himself to her first; out of all the disciples, God entrusted her with the witness of the resurrec
But when local churches become advocates of grace and truth for the gender broken, healing rises like sun breaking through clouds. And I am pleased to say that the church is rising in this hour to mobilize for such healing. She has been provoked by ‘gay marriage’ victories, by the confusing face of once reliable ministries, and by the falling away of many whose sexual shame has now become their boast. Most importantly, her faithful pastors have heard the cries for help from c
‘A faithful friend is a sturdy shelter; he who finds one finds a treasure.
A faithful friend is beyond price, no sum can balance his worth.
A faithful friend is a saving remedy, such as he who fears God finds.
For he who fears God behaves accordingly, and his friend will be like himself.’ (Sirach 6: 15-17) What most fail to realize is that the journey to actually becoming a whole-enough gift for the opposite gender is a magnificent and arduous journey that cannot be reduc
‘Unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies it remains alone. But if it dies, it produces many seeds.’ (Jn 12: 24) I hope I am not being dramatic here. After all, Scripture implores us to count all things loss for the sake of knowing Him more. (Phil. 3: 7, 8) These losses may be deeply personal: long-held expectations and aspirations that we have forsaken for the Gospel. It can also be the disorientation we experience when those around us change. Familiar rallying p
‘You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail.’ – (IS 58: 11b) One sees this clearly in a good marriage. A man and woman, united in body and spirit, regenerate life in the form of children. Yet procreation is only the beginning. The wholeness of two complementary beings, committed for life, provides a stabilizing influence for all who intersect with them. I recall the generous love that both Annette’s parents and my own released to the neighb
Jesus healed 10 lepers. ‘Only one of them came back, praising God in a loud voice. He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked Him—and he was a Samaritan.’ (Luke 17: 15, 16) ‘Now in Christ Jesus you who were far away have been brought near through the blood of Jesus.’ (Eph. 2:13) We came back! We the disintegrated, harassed and helpless due to our misinterpretation of same-sex attraction have been cleansed by Mercy Himself. He made a way for us, and we travel back with shout
‘I urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints.’ (Jude 3) Consider my friend Ben, a pastor in the Reformed Church of America. Ben started his journey out of homosexuality with us at Desert Stream then went on staff at the largest church in his denomination. Consider also Maria Cardenas, a devout Presbyterian (PCUSA) who also faithfully walked out her lesbianism with us and now serves her denomination by running healing groups and proclaimin
My wife Annette observed an 8-year-old boy in a waiting room trying to make sense of a photo in People magazine of two men in tuxes, probably a feature on some celeb ‘gay wedding.’ Wide-eyed, and too truthful to have anything but a visceral response to the madness, he said: ‘Are those guys… you know, together? That’s real scary.’ No scarier than the wedding photo in front of me of two men, 20-years apart yet mirror images of each other, with their adopted 4-year-old daughter
New evidence now exists to show a host of challenges to kids of gay parents. Professor Mark Regenerus found that, when compared to adults raised in married, mother/father families, adults raised by lesbian parents had negative outcomes in 24 out of 40 categories, while adults raised by gay fathers had negative outcomes in 19 categories. (See http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/jun/10/study-suggests-risks-from-same-sex-parenting/) More studies are in the works to debunk t
I love this verse: it conveys concisely how I overcame homosexuality. I did not run from my same-sex attraction; I attended to the need at the core of my same-sex attraction, which was for masculine solidarity. My need for masculine love needed to be purified from sensual (‘I need gay sex’) and political (‘My gay self must be recognized on par with straights’) motives. Such refinement is painful and essential. It occurs only as one surrenders his/her entire identity to Jesus
I grieve for the church. I grieve that the church offends God by misusing His Name. Mostly I grieve for the young homosexual Christian who no longer has any clear direction and truth to follow. I grieve with everything within me. Ole was among the first international interns we had at Desert Stream in the early nineties. A same-sex struggler, he fought hard for his healing. Now alongside his wife and many children, Ole fights for the freedom of same-sex strugglers throughout
Many see the end in sight: finally, our nation is recognizing that homosexuality is a moral good—utterly normal, utterly on par with heterosexuality as solid ground for marriage and family. Utter nonsense. While praying the other day, God showed me a picture of an oil spill that was spreading out and encasing vulnerable, beautiful creatures. At first the oil had little effect on them. Then it constricted movement, and finally their breathing. I saw a powerful balm being appli
Woodcut, published ca. 1880. I just read in the New York Times that Dr. Robert Spitzer, the man who documented the transformation of 200 former homosexuals like me, now claims (for no apparent reason) that we must have been lying. Who knew? Not my wife and kids… Bowing to the irrational drive of gay activists who insist that no homosexual can change (in spite of pretty good evidence to the contrary), Spitzer capitulated. Gratefully, God helps those who aspire to live the trut
Ascension of Christ. Woodcut after a drawing by Julius Schnorr von Carolsfeld (German painter, 1794 - 1872), published in 1877. ‘Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you. But if I go, I will send Him to you.’ (Jn 16:6) Jesus had to leave us in order to liberate us. He had to depart in order to give us power. But for the disciples, Jesus’ ascension back to the Father may have felt more like abandonment than the assurance of authority. Think about it. Jesus’ followe
Jesus’ humiliation has been eclipsed with glory. So is ours, as we testify of how His mercy has washed us and solidified the new creation. Over lunch the other day, a friend recounted his healing story. To do so, he began with his shame, which was founded upon a history of early childhood sexual abuse. Staggering into young adulthood with same-sex attraction, he sought the help of two pastors who abused him sexually and spiritually. He vowed to trust no-one. Yet he knew Jesus
How tragic that the most influential political leader on earth would use his power to redefine marriage. He bowed his knee to the lie that justice means giving gays all they clamor for, rather than what they need. In that, Obama failed to love gays well. He has failed to act authentically as a Christian, and has failed generations to come whose foundations will be further shaken by yet another battering of marriage. My hope is that Obama’s delusion would wake up all Christian