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SSA and Church

Could it be that within the Christian church, a mindset has crept in that, with the aim of wanting to play a positive role and offer help to people with SSA feelings, has started off on the wrong foot from the beginning? And if so, could the inherent result then be that the real core problem is overlooked, and as a result, deviates from it?

Is there proper support for the person dealing with this issue? Or proper dialogue?

Sexual preference is given a kind of status apartus
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Or, does this actually contribute to further confusion, attempting to guide people in the wrong direction? At the very least, it's assistance that falls short, causing people with homosexual feelings to be burdened with a kind of 'religious' yoke they shouldn't have to bear in the first place.

Let me explain this further.

Sexual preference gets a sort of status apart... a priority label that makes it different and special, compared to other people or believers who do not share this sexual preference. Heterosexual believers are seen as people as God originally intended them to be. But is that simply the only contrast? Even a heterosexual ultimately has a sexual preference... and every individual consists of so much more than just his or her sexual preference. Isn't it much more about who you are as a person, the totality of all your individual characteristics that define you? This includes your personality, character, thoughts, behavior, feelings, values, norms, and so on.

Shouldn't the church, in fact, just see believers with a different sexual preference in that totality: equal to the heterosexual person: a personality with all his/her faults and shortcomings?

Personally, I believe that the church has elevated 'the other' (the sexual preference) far too much into something abnormal, and extraordinary. After all, everyone has a sexual orientation, there's no escaping that. And therefore, it belongs to every human being and may be accepted as something given by God. Mind you, this does not mean that SSA feelings are as God originally intended, but that goes for many many aspects of life outside of Eden.

When these 'other' feelings play a role in a believer's life, it is labeled as: "you are deviant, different, different from every other (hetero) believer." This while EVERY person is fundamentally a sinful person and needs His forgiveness. The Fall changed everything. Nothing has the original purpose as God intended it. Or do we think that the Fall only affected everything except certain specific inner characteristics of humans, or even more precisely, sexual orientation and feelings and expressions that come with it?

But still, it seems like someone with 'other' feelings for the same sex is somehow, let's say, 'more' in need of forgiveness.

That's actually quite strange.

  • Grace and His forgiveness are contained in His incomparable richness of grace for the believer who believes in His cleansing blood and forgiveness of sins. His sacrifice that was necessary and places the believer from death and sin into the light.

  • Everything that applies to the heterosexual also applies to the gay. There is not a simple 'DIFFERENT' distinction. Sexual preference does not have an exclusively determining factor regarding the grace and love of Christ. (Ps. 130:3)

  • Behavior and changing one's mindset are personal responsibilities and a growth in a personal relationship with Christ for all believers, heterosexual and gay alike. (Phil. 2:15,16)

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A flaw in the making...

There was a moment when society approached homosexuality differently. There was actually increasing recognition of the importance of equal treatment for people with SSA feelings. Society began to be more open and positive about these fellow human beings. Improvement and tolerance.

Yet, instead of setting the focus on living responsibly and morally true, it became more like emphasising a victim role. As fundamentally different, in weakness, vulnerability, and a plea for attention and change.

So...in essence, in the deepest sense, you are not allowed to be who you are.
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Actually, in the deepest sense, you are not allowed to be who you are. Also in churches and pastoral care, a sort of shift took place. These 'other' people had to be helped with his or her problem with sexual preference. Though... from the idea that God does not want you to sin and well... SSA feelings are supposedly 'extra' sinful. And this while 'not the preference', the orientation, is explicitly mentioned in the Bible. Only behavior. Not a fundamental part of your being.

Is only sexual preference as such then the crucial aspect that sets one apart? After all, various rules apply to all people to be able to walk as a worthy believer. Can sexual preference even be changed? Can a heterosexual change his or her sexual preference as such? Are believers with SSA not only different but therefore also "extra" sinful? Which is why they need 'our' prayer for forgiveness and support more urgently? But don't heterosexual believers have problems and need prayer?

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In other words, a kind of helpful but ineffective support has been created around the orientation someone has. Thus, just as society assists in a kind of victim role, the 'church' also contributes to this: sexual orientation must either change or be tolerated and borne in weakness.

As a kind of "extra baggage" one must carry and live with (preferably celibate), or even better, be healed! In short, fighting against, or denying of preference and thus the sexuality inherent in you.

Fortunately, with the good grace acceptance that one may ALSO exist AND God loves you!

Only... doesn't it all contradict itself? Because you may actually not be who you are in essence.

And isn't that exactly where division arises and people don't understand each other and dialogue breaks down?

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Conclusion of the flaw

So it's not about accepting and embracing who you are in totality (the sum of choices, character, personality, values and norms, and responsibilities, etc.), as a result. But the core is determined by 'just' making SSA explicit and exclusive, and setting it apart. With a strong emphasis on the sinfulness of the preference rather than how you deal with yourself and what choices you make from there (thus) the resulting behavior  (like anyone else).

Acknowledging that you have these feelings is still allowed. But it seems to be a step too far to exclude that there's nothing peculiar going on. That this sexual preference is also real and true as a part of yourself. But what happens is: you're allowed to be who you are except your SSA, or preference. Because preference is considered weakness'

While God says: "I love you, you are My child. Live in my unimaginable richness of grace. My love indeed surpasses everything: Accept that I have already done the work for sin. Because there was truly nothing that 'man' could do or change with regard to sin. I knew you before you knew yourself."

Here, it seems that the perspective from within Christian church jargon brings some deficiencies to light. Essentially, this means nothing other than denying one's own experience of sexuality. Because the SSA preference is disapproved of. Fighting and struggling, as opposed to accepting who you are as a person, because God accepts you as you are.

But how can you fully accept yourself if there's a part of yourself that will ALWAYS remain weak and sinful? Something that won't change. And thereby always burdens you with a sort of sinful weight? But is that a yoke from God or is it a yoke because the 'church' advertises it like that (according to the Bible)?

Sexuality and emotional experience are things that you have. Just like, for example, the color of your eyes.

However, I can steer and make deliberate choices in dealing with SSA. In that, you can even come to the conclusion that you have idealized your SSA feelings, magnified them, made wrong choices, and only walked the path of self-interest. And yes... that' would be such a shame because it might bring you to a pleasant sexual feeling but it does not lead to true freedom and a real intense experience of how God's love and truth can come to His purpose in your life. Because there can be no two kings on one throne.

Faith conviction is a crucial factor in the choices and considerations we have made. Not out of 'holy obligation,' as a compulsion, and having to comply with that. But from the faith that Christ's grace provides: You may accept who you are, what's more: be who you are in totality (what would make your best legacy to all you wnat to be known for). And that is the foundation for fundamental moral choices and discernment.

Faith is not something optional, but is also a part of who you are as an individual. And, especially within a MOM relationship, it also lays the foundation for what is important in 'together,' as a couple, and unity. In this, fully accepting who you are is of great importance, because this conviction applies equally to both and mutually manifests in a deep inner willingness.

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