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Did God Make Me Gay?

I hadn't planned to become a lesbian. So how in the world did I end up this way?

By Christine Sneeringer

"Don't you know that Kim is gay?"

My friend's words stunned me, because I didn't have a clue. Kim and I were both athletes, and we had a lot in common. As we got to know each other, we became really close. So when Kim told me one day, "I want to be more than friends," I naively thought she meant she just wanted us to be even tighter than we already were.

Then my friend dropped the bomb about Kim being gay.

I was confused. At first, I was upset that Kim liked me that way. But after I thought about it, I figured that nothing could be wrong between two people as long as they loved each other. And Kim and I certainly loved each other.

Once I realized that, I was freed from my inhibitions. Soon Kim and I began a sexual relationship. I was 15 and she was 17. It was exciting to have someone care so deeply about me. We'd see each other at school all day, then spend hours on the phone together at night. We always checked with each other before we made plans with other friends.

When Kim graduated a few months later, she turned down several athletic scholarships from out-of-state colleges. She wanted stay in town because we couldn't bear to be apart. We were totally consumed with each other.

I hadn't planned to become a lesbian. So how in the world did I end up this way?

Sexuality defined

When I was young, I learned that being a girl was not a good thing. My alcoholic father had a violent temper, and he would often hit my mother. Because my mom was a victim, I figured it wasn't safe to be female. I looked up to my older brother and wanted to be just like him.

I preferred sports over playing with dolls. I grew up on the tennis court, playing in my first tournament when I was age 6. I played Little League baseball when I was 10 and tackle football with the neighborhood boys.

I was seen as one of the guys because I was as strong and tough as they were. "Tomboy" didn't begin to describe me-I walked like a boy, dressed like a boy, talked like a boy, even spit like a boy. Most adults thought I was a boy and often called me "son" or "young man."

I hated my name, Christine, because it was a girl's name. I told people to call me "Chris," since that could be either male or female.

My parents divorced when I was 12. They sent me away to live with relatives. I was molested by an older cousin before moving back in with my mom. Like most children who have been sexually abused, somehow I thought I was to blame. I thought, If only guys didn't find me attractive, things like this wouldn't happen to me. From then on I wanted to conceal whatever shred of femininity I had, believing that all guys were sex-crazed monsters.

That's the mentality I had when I started high school. I was often mistaken for a guy because of my masculine appearance and mannerisms.

The end of one lesbian relationship

My relationship with Kim lasted a year and a half, until my mom found out. She found a love note I had written to Kim.

"Do you want to tell me about this?" she asked, dropping the card on the table.

I continued to eat in awkward silence. Mom opened the card and began to read my words aloud: "My dearest Kimbo. I'm so glad you are in my life. You make it worth living. I want to spend the rest of my life with you because I love you more than anything. When we get older, I can't wait to get married."

My mom demanded that our relationship end. She called Kim's mom, and together they worked to end our love affair. Eventually they were successful.

After Kim and I broke up, I began to experiment sexually with guys to find out if I was really gay or not. But each time I felt used and degraded because the guys didn't care about me at all; they only wanted sex.

As a result, I knew I preferred being with a girl. It felt natural to me. While in college, I fell in love with Sue, a married woman seven years older than I. Her husband worked long hours, leaving Sue emotionally needy and looking outside her marriage for ways to meet those needs. I was there for her.

Sue regularly attended church. She felt guilty about our relationship because she believed homosexuality was a sin, and guilty because she was being unfaithful to her marriage. That relationship ended in divorce while we were together.

I was dealing with guilt, too, over being a home wrecker. For a year and a half, Sue and I remained lovers anyway.

Accepted while gay

One day I told Sue I'd like to join her church's women's softball team. In the three seasons that I played on that team, something stirred in my heart. I was drawn by the love that my teammates had for each other and for me. I don't mean romantic love, but a love that was pure and right.

My teammates knew I was gay, but they never treated me like an outsider. I later found out that they were regularly praying for me.

I wanted to experience what they had, so I started going to church. I never dreamed that after all I'd done, God could still love me. But I was glad to find out I was wrong. God did love me, completely and without reservation. I couldn't resist that kind of love so I became a Christian and gave him my life. He forgave my sins and wiped the slate clean.

Sue and I soon broke up, but I still had homosexual desires. I wondered if God could truly deliver me from the gay lifestyle. I was also angry at God because I thought he had made me gay. I didn't understand that wasn't God's doing but my own. I eventually realized that I had chosen this path for myself because I was trying to protect myself against further hurt from men. I also believe I had been looking for my mother's love in the arms of another woman.

Beginning to leave gay lifestyle

Not long after I became a Christian, I was listening to a call-in show on the radio. The man on the show, Sy Rogers, seemed to understand the struggles I was dealing with. He was a former homosexual and was now the president of Exodus International, an organization that helps people who want to break free from the gay lifestyle. He mentioned an upcoming seminar in Orlando, just a couple of hours from my home in Tampa. I made plans to attend.

The seminar changed my life. Sy shared his story of overcoming a lifetime of homosexuality, and I was filled with hope that I could, too.

I found out about an Exodus ministry in Tampa, called Straight Ahead. I began to attend weekly support group meetings. I also got more involved at my church and started making new friends. However, I was very uncomfortable trying to fit in with straight girls because I was still so masculine. But even that was beginning to change.

For the first time since I had been sexually abused as a child, I wanted to be attractive like the other girls at church. All my life I had been one of the guys, but now I wanted to be one of the girls. I wanted to be more feminine. But I didn't know how.

Later that year, I attended an Exodus conference in San Antonio. There I participated in a makeover session. As I walked back to my room after the makeover, I felt like God was saying, "You know those girls at church you envy because they're beautiful? You're no different. You are beautiful, too, just like them."

Stunned, I continued walking as tears rolled down my cheeks. My roommate was ironing her dress before the evening banquet when I walked in. She looked at me, confused. "You look great," she said. "Why are you crying?"

"I'm pretty," I stammered, surprised at this new revelation. All my life I had struggled with feelings of inadequacy about being a girl. Suddenly for the first time, I saw myself as "just like them."

When I returned to my church in Tampa, I asked people to call me Christine. I wanted people to know I was a girl. I met godly, mature women who helped me see that being female wasn't so bad. I also came to realize that straight girls have the same insecurities that I was dealing with. I was more like them than I ever thought.

I also saw guys in a different light. They could be true friends who were interested in me, not sex. For the first time, I began to feel safe as a girl. Gradually I became comfortable and secure in my new role.

The key to my healing was developing healthy same-sex friendships. As I did this, my sexual attractions for girls diminished. I also met with a counselor to help me deal with sexual abuse and family issues. Meantime, I continued my involvement in church and Exodus.

With God's help and the support of caring people, I now walk in freedom from lesbianism. Homosexuality doesn't cast a shadow on my life any more.

Christine Sneeringer is the director of Worthy Creations, a Christian outreach to homosexuals, a member ministry of Exodus International. She lives in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. http://exodus.to/ministry.shtml

Editorial Note:

Whether heterosexual or homosexual... it seems that everyone has the same, common longings in their heart:

  1. I want someone who will always be with me.
  2. I want to be loved unconditionally.
  3. I want to be intimate and truly known by another.
  4. I want to share my life with someone....not having to hide anything behind a mask.
  5. I want to be accepted for who I am.

To be loved and accepted this way is a basic human desire. We search for someone to love us like this, if possible. Sometimes people find this in a friend or a partner. But no one can love us perfectly...like God does. Maybe you've been told that God is mad at you or rejects you like others have. That's not what God says. He desires a relationship with you, and after you come to him, he promises: "I will never leave you, nor forsake you." He blatantly says, "I have loved you with an everlasting love. I have drawn you with loving kindness."1

You can be certain of God's love for you. Jesus said: "As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father's commandments and abide in his love."2 "Abide in my love." That means to live in awareness of his love for you. To rest in it. To know it.

When we begin to become convinced of his love for us, we tend to become less needy, less emotionally dependent upon others. As we realize how much God loves us, there comes an ability to love others more selflessly, more purely. But the point is not to become better at loving others. The point is that we all need to know, on a real, experiential level, God's personal love for us. He created us to know his love.

Maybe you're thinking, "Well, yeah fine. But given the stuff I've done in my life, I'm not so sure God is ready to shower me with his love." Yes...he is. We can completely count on God accepting us when we come to him. He is willing to love us just as we are, in spite of whatever we've done. Take a look at these three amazing statements from the Bible.

"God demonstrates his own love for us in this: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us."3 Jesus said, "Greater love has no one than this, that someone lays down his life for his friends."4 "This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins."5

This was his idea. This was his love that compelled him to fix our problem with sin. Once we begin a relationship with God, he comes into our lives and cleanses us from sin, and over time, changes our hearts and minds to be more in line with who he created us to be.

Would you like to have this kind of close relationship with God, to know his love and to see him work in your life to bring healing and renewed hope as you grow to know him better? Please go here for how you can begin this relationship with God right now: Knowing God Personally.

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Footnotes: (1) Jeremiah 31:3 (2) John 15:9,10 (3) Romans 5:6-8 (4) John 15:13 (5) 1John 4:10