View Full Version : Hello my name is Tobi
I'm new here. I was browsing the web looking for a forum that would be able to discuss Christianity and homosexuality. I have been a Christian (born again) for the last 18 years. During this period, because of being married and raising a family, I have put aside (buried) my transgendered feelings. Now that my kids are grown and have left home, these feelings are coming back as strong as ever. I believe this forum tends to deal more with homosexuality than transgendered people, but, in my case, I have also been gay identified, and have lived in the past out and open as a crossdressed gay male. I would say that I am truely bi-sexual. My relationships, sexual and otherwise, have been about equal between males and females. Don't get me wrong, I love my wife and have no thoughts of changing our relationship in anyway. She is aware of my TG nature and is supportive.
I am a Bible believing fundamentalist Christian that has a head full of the sin of homosexualality. I have taught Sunday school, been active in the church, served on church boards, etc. I can't, at this time come out with the real me. It is like I live a dual life--in fact I do live a dual life.
So here's my problem, I love the Lord, and I know he is my Lord and Savior, but I am having a terrible struggle reconciling my love of the Lord with my "sin" of homsexuality. Even though, at this time, I am not a practicing homosexual, (and probably will never be in the future) I cannot help but indentify with my gay brothers with whom I have suffered much in the same fate.
I would like to be a good Christian witness to the gay community, but I'm struggling with all the condemnation that comes down from the Christian community which even makes me want to condem myself. I can't help who I am. I did not choose to have Gender Identity Disphoria. I do believe that Jesus loves me, but how do I deal with the statement, "Jesus loves the sinner, but hates the sin." What do you do, if you feel that who you are is the sin?
My wife also has problems with this issue. She can accept Gender Identity Disphoria, but she has a problem with homosexuality because she feels that the Bible speaks so directly against it. She feels that accepting homosexuality is a "slippery slope," once you accept homosexuality, than where do you draw the line? Why not accept all human behavior?
A brother in Christ,
03-08-2006, 02:21 AM
Welcome Tobi, good to have you.
That’s a good post, you may even want to think about putting it in the main forum, there’s a lot of great people here who are very supportive and thoughtful. Someone has to start the threads on transgender issues :) .
Personally I don’t feel there is a difference between transgender, gender identity “dysphoria,” and homosexuality. I joke sometimes that “I’m not gay, I’m a heterosexual girl with a guy’s body.” then when they mention how “masculine” I am, I say, “So you’re saying I’m a good actress?” So I think they’re just labels, some people are more comfortable or identify better with certain one’s. Also many in the gay community, myself included, still associate femininity and feminine behavior with the negative response it often receives as far as social norms go. Especially with heterosexual men, they identify with homosexuals as being physically male, but despise any aspect of femininity, especially the “gross” sex part. I’ve recently understood that this is the real meaning of homophobia, not being afraid of homosexuals, but the fear that somehow if that guy is gay it could happen to me, the confusion over not knowing how it is possible is what is so unnerving for them I think. This confusion is what seems to be the major problem. Heterosexual's who've decided it’s not possible to be born gay and in addition, they aren’t gay, so they conclude something must have gone wrong along the way for homosexuals to be that way.
Any insistence on the part of homosexuals that this is not the case is seen as further evidence of the delusion that cause their homosexuality in the first place. Like in response to your question (What do you do, if you feel that who you are is the sin?)
If they despise you, it’s homophobia or they need someone to feel superior too or both, being commanded by God to hate what you already hate is too good an offer to refuse for some insincere Christians. Some are actually concerned and want to “help,” but just don’t believe we were created like this, whether out of practical disbelief or because of the Bible.
Read Mel White’s booklet on “What the Bible does and doesn’t say about homosexuality.” You can read it on line right here at the site. He mentions how one of the recent translators decided that the original hebrew text meant the same as homosexual and effectively changed the meaning of the text. This is the problem with using the Bible to support arguments, there are too many variables as to what is true of what it says, and what is true of what it mean, and those questions can be applied to every step of the process of amassing texts and excluding others, rewriting, interpreting, translating etc.
You have to determine why you believe in the Bible, how you view God, Jesus and salvation, and how well your religion expresses that. Are you a Christian because you’re afraid of an eternal hell and a vengeful God, or do you aspire to be the best person you can be and find the story of Jesus to be the best example of how humans should love each other? The Bible portrays both views of God, so people are going to find what they want to.
Since Jesus is God, I’d consider his words to be a direct representation when it comes to describing who God is, the old testament words of God were filtered through men under the influence of Original Sin. What would Jesus do/say I find to be the best judge in answering questions of faith especially as far as what is a sin. Jesus as God said the two greatest commandments were to Love God and Love others as ourselves. If God is Love then to Love God is to Love Love, which will insure that you Love others as yourself.
One thing is certain, if God is Love, God is not arbitrary. The reasons for the 10 commandment was to avoid causing evil/harm to others and thus avoid the results of that harm, for them and for you. Ask yourself, do I feel that who I am is evil or is going to cause evil to others? And how about those who would change the way you feel you are, do they feel you should change because someone else or even yourself with be harmed, or do they feel you should change because “the Bible says so?”
What strikes me as most insincere about the religious condemnation of homosexuals and the transgendered especially is what they don’t say. To know we feel this is who we are, yet they proclaim to the world it is a “choice” and a “lifestyle,” tells me they either don’t know how we feel and are therefore not even qualified to have an opinion, or that they don’t care how we feel and are therefore not in a position to be speaking as a Christian. If I truly wanted to speak “truth in love,” I would say “I realize you feel this is who you are, and that you didn’t choose this, but it is still wrong for these reasons.” To approach it any other way tells me they don’t know enough about the very verifiable truth of the situation here and now. If they don’t care about the truth they can find out about, why would I believe they care about truth that they can’t find out about? Like why a scripture says what it does, what did it mean at the time, why didn’t explain things further as God obviously knew even then that these questions would be asked now.
That’s all I got for now. It’s stressful enough to feel fundamentally divided in yourself, let alone to feel that the division itself is inherently evil.
I hope to see you around Tobi :love:
03-08-2006, 07:37 AM
I want to let you know that you are welcome here. You raised so many questions that many on the forum have deal with or are dealing with. I pray God’s truth, love, and understanding on your continuing journey.
03-08-2006, 11:09 AM
Hi Tobi and welcome!
You raise some fantastic questions! It would be interesting to go into them further sometime - - -
We have very different backgrounds, so probably anything I say in response to you feeling like 'what you are' is a 'sin' might not mean much, or be helpful. I believe very differently than you do - that having a feeling can never be a sin, no matter what the feeling is. And that one's intrinsic identity can never "be" a sin. I am so sorry you feel that way.
I resonate to some of the other things you said about your identity though. When pressed to slap on a label, I'll say I'm bisexual. I experience myself as not really having an orientation though, or perhaps if I can say this here without freaking everyone out, it seems like my orientation changed over time, but I identify very strongly with the gay community. Despite being very happily married to a straight guy!
Emproph's self-description makes me smile. :) He's like a mirror image of me that way. See, I come across as a total girly girl, but inside I somtimes see myself as a tough butch man. When I tell that to people who are looking at me, they fall over laughing. Fwiw, the cartoon avatar on my posts looks almost exactly like me ('cept I don't go around wearing bunny ears!!!).
Anyway Tobi, come back and post some more!:D
03-08-2006, 12:14 PM
First of all, as an aside, Zerbie: I did not know that the image for your posts was an avatar image- my eight year old daughter absolutely loves the series, as does my partner. They watch it faithfully and we are going to surprise her with all of the DVD's!!!
Anyway, Tobi, I feel similar to Zerbie, in that I do not believe that what a person feels about who they are (as long as that is not a characteristic that will bring harm to others or themselves) cannot be judged as wrong. Also, we often get stuck in our own labels, whether we are talking orientation or mental health issues or behaviors, it starts to be like "I am not a person, I am just a lesbian with depression and anxiety who is a workaholic ( some of those things may really apply to me but who knows???LOL) Anyway, labelling ourselves, although it can help us to connect with others, can trap us into thinking that is how we have to define ourselves, based on what we think the label means, or what others think the label means. I have known I am a lesbian since about the age of 22 (I am in my 40;s now), but before that, I liked guys and wanted to date/be physical with them. Now I only picture myself with my partner, we have been together ten years . The feeling of love that I have for her is so intense and pure and real, I could never believe that there is something wrong with that. Lifestyle and choice is about what kind of car I drive, or what kind of clothes we buy for our daughter, or what kind of house we live in and how much our mortgage is. It is not about our sexual orientation, whatever that may be. Also, please do not ever feel that there is not room here for transgendered persons, as well as gay persons, bisexual persons, and heterosexual persons who are allies or want to learn more and be more understanding. My family and I are members of a United Methodist Church, and while we have not told our female pastor that we are lesbian parents, we present ourselves fully as a family, because that is what we are. We both were raised as Catholics and feel quite disillusioned with the Catholic Church. So far, our experience in our Methodist congregation has been very embracing. ANd, even more important than that, I know that Jesus loves me, loves me for who I am, loves me for loving and treating others, and loves me because he knows that I love Him. I agree fully with Emproph about asking "What would Jesus do?" when I approach things. Bishop Tutu once said about this topic "God would not be where his church is on this issue". He is absolutely right. I am so glad you found this website, I like to say that it found me, because I needed support and affirmation in leading a peaceful existence among all of those persons that want to help us to believe that we are not good enough or loved by God. Let me tell you that you are loved, and He will watch out for you. Come back often, glad you are here, and peace to you and to your wife for self-love and understanding. Vanessa:love: :pray:
03-08-2006, 03:54 PM
The word Avatar has many meanings. I was not aware it was a TV show. I used the word avatar in the sense of an image attached to an online screenname. I don't know why the word for that is avatar, just noticed that was what others called those images.
Thank you all for your caring responses. I have been doing a lot reading in the last week. The articles by Mel White and Walter Wink have been especially helpful. My wife and I will have to do a lot of praying over these issues. It is very easy to accept the mainstream opinions, when you feel insecure about your self and its rightness. I appreciate the positive and upbeat attitude in this forum. I will continue to read the forum and I hope to post now and then with something that will be positive and helpful. Thanks again.
Your brother in Christ,
03-12-2006, 10:43 PM
Having been raised a fundamentalist, I can understand the struggle you are going through. Like others said, whether gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender - we're all in this together & have similar issues.
The struggle may be difficult at first, but don't give up or lose hope in the midst of your journrey. Light is at the end at the tunnel...just sometimes you have to wade through the darkness for a time. Pray, have faith, and realize there is nothing wrong with you. God doesn't make mistakes & we LGBT are not a mistake. We are Blessed, unique, gifted, and as I like to say - we are the Angels of America. Our suffering can be diverted to help others in pain & difficulties.
Peace Upon You & God Bless.
04-02-2006, 09:31 PM
A big welcome!
Like SolInvictus, I gew up Fundamentalist (adolescence- 20's) and can understood your struggle. It can be difficult to sort through all the messages that you've inculcated.
I can't stress enough how important is was for me to sit with my own feelings and thoughts and as you are doing already: read and study. A good book can be like a mirror. We can see in others words and thoughts a glimmer of our own selves. There's no need, thank God, to invent the wheel, even though I remember well the feeling that they wasn't anyone else like me in the world. So many have dealt with these matters: you are not alone my friend and are as perfect as God created you.
04-02-2006, 10:40 PM
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