Mercy 15: Mercy for Transformation
‘Do not be conformed to this age but be transformed by the renewing of your mind…’ (Romans 12: 2a)
‘That was the first time I had ever heard anything hopeful about homosexuality’: a not unfamiliar response from Christians who hear us share our journeys out of homosexuality and into wholeness in Christ.
My take? The body of Christ has bought the lie that Jesus cannot touch homosexuality! He may well have destroyed death, stormed the gates of hell to get us out of there, and rose again in order to raise us up into newness of life, but homosexuality? His transforming grace does not suffice! If the Church is the witness of Jesus, then that is precisely what we hear: stammering little nothings that basically convey ‘you’re born that way, sorry. Jesus suffered and so must you…’
I do not hope in an arbitrary blast of Pentecost or a therapeutic technique that only a few can access. Nor do I define transformation as a seamless shift from gay to straight desires. I am referring to what Jesus actually did for us. His life of obedience resulting in crucifixion and resurrection opened for all the horizon of what it means to be human: authentically, dynamically, passionately human.
That has profound application for our sexuality, what it means to be made in His image as male and female. Jesus is the true image of God in humanity. As we seek only Him as the source of our wholeness, we become reconciled to who we are. That involves the freedom to honor our own gender as a gift, not a source of sexual completion. With proper support and solidarity from our own gender, we then become good gifts to the other gender as well.
Identification with Christ Crucified and Raised becomes the ground of the new self. He lays an utterly fresh foundation on which we cultivate new attributes, virtues, and desires. Many secondary disciplines and interventions help activate this new identity. But the base and source of this transformation is Jesus Christ.
How glorious to gather continuously with persons from SSA backgrounds whose very fruitfulness as mothers and fathers, husbands and wives, and as generous chaste friends is founded wholly in Jesus. We have believed Christ. That has made all the difference!
‘Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor swindlers nor slanderers will inherit the Kingdom of God. And that is what some of you were. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.’ (I Cor 6: 9-11)
Desert Stream/Living Waters: Texas, Raul & Ondine Morales, Regional Coordinators. Please pray for greater unity and strength for our leaders in Texas.
Restored Hope Network: Keith Vennum MD, Orlando, FL. Keith is an MD and a psychologist who sees clients struggling with unwanted SSA. Applications to join RHN: pray that the Board will have wisdom and discernment as they make decisions on the applications, and that each one accepted would be a good fit for the network.
Courage: Please pray that government leaders will recognize that defining marriage as a lifelong union between one man and one woman if the best policy for all!
Cor Project: Pray that we would remain humble and grateful to God in all that we do.