How Holy Spirit Can Help You Minister to Someone With Same-Sex Attraction

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Leaders at this church made a pathway for freedom from homosexuality.
Leaders at this church made a pathway for freedom from homosexuality. (Janko Ferlic)
Q: According to your accounts, much of the homosexual mindset is wrapped around the idea of identity. How has your concept or definition of "identity" changed through this process?
Everyone needs identity. In fact, we all have one, whether we're consciously aware of it or not. Where you get it often depends on environment. I did not have healthy masculine identity as a child. I didn't like or respect the men in my childhood. Many of them were violent, and for one reason or another directed that violence at me. The experience with my sister's boyfriend was what I saw as the first positive experience with another male. It was socially intimate. It was physically pleasant. It was psychologically fulfilling. It shaped how I wanted to see myself—who I wanted to be.
 This all happened when I was an adolescent. I had no idea what was happening. My identity was being shaped in a values vacuum when it came to sexuality. No one was talking about it at home, school or church. I think many of us in that generation had the same experience, whether we identified as hetero- or homosexual. I knew girls everyone thought were "good girls" who became pregnant at least in part because no one had explained the practical aspects of sexuality. I can't believe that didn't shape their identity.
 I think it is possible for healthy families and churches to have a very positive role in shaping young identities. Someone needs to be conscious as this is happening, and it isn't likely to be the hormone-driven adolescent.
Q: How can the church reach out to those in the homosexual community?
As I suggested earlier, we should learn to see the local church as a hospital, not as a hotel. Whether or not you are in a position of leadership, you can demonstrate the love of Christ to everyone around you. Some won't need your help because they don't want it and will resent you for suggesting they need it. Some won't need your help because, well, they may be spiritually more advanced than you are. But some will need your help. These are the ones who are struggling. Take them under your wing. Walk alongside them. Understand they will probably fall. Don't write them off when this happens. Pick them up, dust them off and help them get going again. Don't demand that people achieve perfection before they are acceptable to you. Love them with the love of Jesus. He loved His own even when they denied and abandoned Him.
Don't give up.
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