Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Reasons you're not gay

Do not judge, or you too will be judged.
Matthew 7:1

If there is one thing that I get tired of hearing is that you are not really gay!  Really, really!  You know this?  You know what goes on inside me?  You know if I am gay or straight?  Here is just some of the things I have heard over the years.

"You are not gay cause at one time you married a guy"

"You are not gay because you had a son"

"You are not gay because you dated men at one time"

"You are not gay, you will go back to being straight once you accept that."

"You will be straight once you accept Jesus Christ"

"You will be straight once you find the right man"

"You just haven't accept all of God's scripture, when you do you will be straight."

"You just need to be cured, you really are straight, this is just an illness."

"You will grow out of this phase"

"You will change your mind once you have been hurt enough"

"No guy did anything for you because they weren't Godly relationships, when you do get one that is, you will be straight"

And the list can go on.  It is tiresome and the sad part is, this is just from my family, not outsiders.  People outside my family are more receptive to me being gay and don't try to change me.

They may say, "I don't approve of it, but I accept you."  I know that these people would even be there for me if I were to be in a relationship.

It breaks my heart that one day, when I am in said relationship, that I will not have family there for the wedding, that I won't bring my significant other to Thanksgiving and Christmas, and to other family gatherings.  That to my family, fine, be gay, just be single and alone cause it is wrong to act on it.  It hurts to know that I am not going to have their blessing to be fully me.

My comfort though, I know that I can go before God as full me and know that I am accepted.  He says I am His child.  Made by Him.  I know when I stand in His presence He don't see my sins or that I am bipolar or that I am an alcoholic or that I am gay, He sees that I am covered by Christ's blood and I am His child.

I truly believe if Christ walked the Earth today, He would say "Come on yall, accept Homosexuality and get past it.  There is more important things.  I was saying no to things that caused harm not the loving committed monogamous relationships that is of today."

I have on my desk a sticky note that reads "If God likes me, I like me, and you don't like me, the problem is with you!"  I know I have to remember this.  I am not the problem if you don't accept.  My only concern is that relationship between God and myself.

So if you are like me, heard all the "You are not gay" crap, have people that don't accept all of you, hang in there.  The issue is with them, not you.  Love them and pray for them.  Accept them where they are and know that you are not alone!

Friday, May 26, 2017

Book Review - Quench! refreshing devotionals by gay, trans, and affirming Christians – December 1, 2009 by Rev. Jeff Miner (Author), John Tyler Connoley (Author), Keith J. Phillips (Author), Steve Adams (Author), & 12 more

This is not your typical book of daily devotions!
Join this unique group of writers in daily meditation, and quench your spiritual thirst with heart-felt, real-world reflections by fellow Christians who are lesbian, gay, transgender, straight and affirming, lay and clergy. You will find yourself never thirsty with the living water poured out in Quench!
Each of the 100 entries in this book has three parts:
Today's Scripture. After you read the day's passage, we recommend you take some time to meditate on it and ask yourself, What might God be saying to me from this? Does any word, phrase, or idea stand out? It may help to summarize your thoughts in a sentence or two before reading on.
Our Thoughts. The authors will share what they have taken from the scripture.
Thought for the Day. This is something you can take with you, to remember and ponder throughout the day.

This is really a unique book!  I have enjoyed the entries I have read so far.  It does not have daily entries like a normal daily devotional, but you can treat each one daily.  Now you do have to have your Bible with you as the scriptures are not printed in it.  One thing I found as a down fall as I wanted to keep it at the office, but that is okay.  It allows me to get better acquainted with my Bible again.

I really love how each passage makes you think.  It is thought provoking and brings you to question things you may have not thought of before.  If you are looking for something that brings you closer to God and makes you really think about things, this is the book for you!

Book Review The Word Is Out: Daily Reflections on the Bible for Lesbians and Gay Men January, 1999 by Chris Glaser (Author)

Glaser defines The Word as an intimate, loving encounter with God. Through reflection on the Bible in the light of the particular experience of lesbians and gay men, that Word may emerge and embrace a community that the church has often rejected. Each entry of this year-long daily devotional begins with a scripture verse and concludes with a prayer or affirmation.

Okay, I normally don't review a book till I have read a book all the way through, but this book is not a normal book.  It truly is a daily devotional book and so far, I am enjoying it.  I am a few days into it and it is very good.  It may have been written in 1999, but it stands true with today's time.

I had been looking for one and this book is just one of my daily devotional books.  I highly recommend it!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Don't Rush God's Timing!

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
Galatians 6:9

I don't know about you but I forget that God has this and I try to rush Him.  I want things and I want it now!  And oh how I get myself into trouble!  I push for things and find myself in a heap trying to get out of it and having to beg God to help me once more fix things, but if I had just let Him do things in His time, it would have been much easier.

For instance, I really wanted to get a laptop.  I justified getting it because then I could post here more easily at home and work on my book.  I could have waited, shopped around, price checked, and made sure I had the funds.  Yet I wanted it now.  So I went off to Walmart and bought one.  Oh how nice it was, till I realized it didn't hold a charge.  Also, found online it cheaper.  And that money I used, well I should have saved because the car broke down and I needed to repair it and that meant I was short on funds for a week till pay day.  I should have waited.

Another example, I tried to rush God's timing in dating.  I wanted someone and was tired of being alone.  So, I started looking online.  I met a few people but every time I tried to go on a date, they would cancel.  I started to get depressed and think no one wanted me.  Then it dawned on me, I was still working on cleaning up my past, I was not ready for a relationship.  Friends yes, girlfriend no.  When I realized this, I was able to be content in the matter and not be down about it.  God knew I could not be there for the other fully yet.  I still had healing to do.

And lastly, I wanted to rush and get my book out.  I wrote three days straight.  I thought I had done good.  I was proud of it.  I shared it though with three people and what I thought was a book turned out to be a good summary and not a story.  It was not ready to do the good that God has planned for it.  So now I am taking my time with it and writing the story out like I am supposed to.

God knows how things are to be, if we just get out of the way and follow His lead, then things go a lot easier.  I know for me I will meet the gal that will walk with me when we are both ready, I will finish the book when it is truly a story ready to help others, and all things done with His timing in mind are blessed.  So what are you forcing to be in your timing and what are you allowing to be in His timing? 

Monday, May 8, 2017

There Are Worst Things

There Are Worst Things

There are worst things in life that I could be.
I could name them all, but what good would that be?
You would just shrug that all off.
You would lump me in that category cause you say this is a choice.
Did you choose to be ignorant?

There are worst things in life I could be.
You don't want to hear that though.
You think that I am sick and need to be cured.
You think this is something that I can over come.
Did you overcome ignorance?

There are worst things in life that I could be.
Yet, you don't see that.
You want me to be just as you see me.
You think I should fit in your box of normal.
Do you fit ignorance in there?

There are worst things in life that I could be.
I have love and give love.
I am a person worthy of life.
I can have a great life with people in it.
And your ignorance has no place in it.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

My story of coming out!

Coming out to others that you are gay is a hard thing to do.  I know.  I was at one time not as open as I am now and even now when I tell someone new, I get scared of how they will react.  Let me tell you about my story and how I came out or how I have been outed at times.

I always knew that I was different.  I never really fit in.  I thought it was because of several different reasons and over time I learned that to be true, but this is about me being gay.  To talk about me coming out though, I have to tell my whole story.  It is a colorful story.  It talks about leaving the church, looking at different religions, birth of a son, making mistakes, staying in my car, alcoholism, drug use, and so forth.  So don't expect this story to be an easy one.  I know just telling it is not that easy, so I imagine reading it is the same.

I was born in 1977 to a woman that was just 19 and she did the best thing she could do for me, she placed me for adoption.  I was adopted by my folks from birth and instantly had two older brothers.  My family raised me in the Church of Christ and that is very important to my story.  Back then, being gay was against the church and in some churches it still is.  I remember though we went Sunday morning, Sunday night, and Wednesday night.  I was part of the youth group and active in many areas of the church.  Yet I did not fit in as far as I felt.

When I was in junior high, I dated guys, but I was already looking at girls and wondering what it would be like to kiss them.  My first crush, was not a guy but actually on my PE coach.  She was amazing even to this day I look back fondly on her.  I never told anyone that I liked her.  Girls didn't like girls like I liked her.  It was wrong, so I didn't say a word to anyone.

High school came and I still dated guys but found myself dreaming of girls. I remember being jealous of one of the guys in the youth group because he dated one of my best friends and I secretly liked her more then a friend but I could never tell her that.  I was alone in this.  I had no one to tell and even if I did, how were they going to react?  I was in a conservative town, conservative church, and it was wrong from what I was taught.

I began drinking some in high school and at the same time, started meeting with the preacher as my mom wanted me to get help cause I was always depressed.  I was very unstable.  I hung out with the wrong crowd and usually was picked on.  Being picked on was nothing new cause that had been happening since I was in elementary.  Mom thought it was best my junior year to move me to private school.  I learned there that nothing changes.  You just stick out worse for being different.

I also found myself with new crushes.  I still dated guys, but my eyes followed the ladies.  In this time I came to trust the preacher, but I did not dare say, "Hey, I think I am gay" besides, though I had heard the term, I still did not know I was.  Not only was I just dating guys, but I was sleeping with guys from all different age ranges.  I was sexually active since I was about fifteen and though I didn't enjoy it, I didn't hate it either.

In my teens, somewhere around eighteen I think, I started experimenting with women.  I was already hanging out with ungodly crowds and partying any chance I could.  Getting drunk and high was nothing new to me.  I learned sex with a woman was much more enjoyable then with a man but at that time, the only time I had it was in threesomes.

When I graduated from high school, I chose a college up in Michigan to go to school at.  It was a Church of Christ school.  I got up there and boy did things go down hill.  I fell for a gal who yet again I could not say anything to, I got drunk more often then not, and I missed tons of classes.  Soon the dean had me in her office and asked me to go home.  My mom came and got me.

When I got home, the preacher said maybe the Church of Christ was not for me, to go out and find me.  I took that to heart and ran.  Boy did I run.  Yet at the same time, I felt like no one wanted me.  I lost my college, let down my family, and now my church did not want me.  Did they know I was gay?  Or was I just too lost to be saved cause of everything else?

When I was twenty, I had a one night stand and ended up pregnant.  I went to the preacher and he helped me go tell my parents.  I remember that being the worse day of my life.  The rage and anger that was shown.  I already knew that adoption was the choice for me.  So, I went off to Lubbock.  During my time there, I gave the Church of Christ a chance again.  I would go to church with the home that I was staying at, go out and talk to others about adoption, and was trying to atone for my behavior.  Then I met this woman there that I had a crush on, she was married, but I still had a crush on her.  And yet again I could not tell anyone, not even the psychiatrist I was seeing as it was his wife. I soon had my son.  And after three days with him, I came home.

This threw me into a real low.  I began to go out and get drunk or high any chance I could.  I would go to the church occasionally but I just knew everyone was looking down on me, so soon I ran again.

This time I met a woman and we decided to date.  My first girlfriend.  She was ten years older then me, but I didn't care.  I soon moved in with her, not telling anyone that we were dating.  I still was not ready to come out.  Not to family any ways.  Our drinking friends knew, but that was it.  About a month after living with her, I fell for her roommate's daughter who was my age.  That was not the smartest thing ever to do.  I then found myself with out a home and pride kept me from going home.

Instead of going home, I stayed in my car.  I had a job, but no money to get my own place.  So I would go to different friend's houses to shower, eat fast food, and pretend like everything was alright.  I was also studying different religions and was looking at paganism.  After a few months of doing this, the girl I fell for, she got her own place and asked me to join her there.  She was pagan and started teaching me about it.  I was on cloud nine, here was someone who wanted me and a new religion that felt like it would not fail me.  We had it all, we never ran out of money because of some reasons I will get to in a minute, her father was a pot dealer so we always had weed, and I always made sure we had alcohol.

During the stay with that ex, a person that I called friend and myself ran a scam.  It was how I had money in between checks.  And this is the first time I am going to be honest about it.  That person would get checks from "boyfriends" and make them out to me and I would sign them and cash them at my bank.  He then would make sure they would clear some how.  Each check for about $2,500 and we would split the money up.  I tell you this because it will play a part soon in this story.

After some time though, paradise fell apart.  She decided I was not enough and moved a guy in and soon my spot in bed moved to the living room.  Then the next thing I knew, I was with out a place to live.  This time though, I moved to my folks.  This was to be a short stay though.  Because of the check cash thing, I was caught and put on probation for one of the checks.  The other person had nothing happen to him.

I found myself falling for a gal this time that was ten years younger then me and we moved in together.  Well, kinda, we moved in with others.  During which time, I decided I was going to tell my brother that I was gay.  He took it well, and honestly didn't care and said he loved me.  Yet the first minute I made him mad, he told my folks so I never got a chance to tell them in my own time.  I am sure they knew though.  How could they not?

This girlfriend and I stayed together for some time, then one day we moved from one part of Houston to another and they revoked my probation and I went to jail.  I was not given a second chance.  I had to serve six months.  I remember during that time writing preacher and he wrote back.  Said he would pray for me, but he knew one day I would end up there.  I was so mad at him for that line.  I didn't want to think that I had lived a life that someone expected me to end up in jail, but yet I had.  So really I was mad at myself.

I served six long months.  I had my girlfriend on the outside and she didn't know but I had a girlfriend on the inside too.  Some player I was.  I hated to be alone so I made sure I wasn't.  Sunshine made my time bearable.  Before I knew it, I was out.  My outside girlfriend and I moved down to Winnie and I thought that we were going to have a good life.  Soon though that ended.

We split up cause while I was working 60 hour weeks at Subway, she was busy knocking boots with a couple.  If there is one thing that I can't stand, it is not being loyal.  We broke up and I moved back to my folks.

I stayed pagan during all this.  I had found that the religion and people in it didn't care about my jail time or being gay.  They just accepted me.  In fact, they were always glad to see me!  I grew to love many of them and still call them friends today.

Soon after I moved home, I went to one of the pagan events and got an offer to move to Beaumont.  I decided to go ahead.  I became the thing in the attic!  I loved it!  At that event, one of the guys introduced me to the new girlfriend and we hit it off.  Okay, I was taken back by her!  She was something else.  Beautiful, spunky, and intelligent!

Soon, she came to me and said she never been with a woman and wanted to.  I could not pass that up.  So, I slept with her, even though she was with my friend.  I thought they had an open relationship because he was sleeping with other women, but come to find out, he expected the women to be just with him and he could be with who ever he wanted.  First time I went toe to toe about a woman with a man and that day, I walked away with the woman on my arm.

She and I dated for awhile.  It was more of partying, drinking, and drugging then anything with an occasional date out.  Yet it was fun.  She knew how to play me and get me to do anything.  I was a fool and she knew I would do anything.  Soon though, I grew tired of it, and we went our separate ways staying friends.

In the pagan group, there was this guy, he and I had gotten to know each other and grown close.  He was very feminine and different.  He and I got to talking and I got to questioning my sexuality again.  I decided to give him a chance and decided that he was feminine enough for me to balance what I needed.  We moved in right away with each other.  After six months, got engaged.  After a year, got married.

I agreed to this because I started noticing that the world, especially my immediate family treated me different and I got a relationship back with them.  They were happy.  I was actually doing something for a change that they were proud of.  I was no longer an outcast.

Over the next seven years though, the marriage changed.  He became controlling.  He would sit outside my job and watch me work for hours.  He had me sale my car and then not allow me to get another one.  He would not let me go any where, not even to my parents alone.  And I became secluded from the world.  I turned inward.

I told him one day that I missed the touch of a woman, so he said let's find you a "girlfriend".  I began looking online and started talking to a few people.  I then went on a date with this amazing woman who just blew me away.  My husband became jealous and said I was not allowed to see her again and that instead I just needed to have sex with a woman at campouts and where he could watch.

I for some reason fought him on this.  I went back to see the woman that I had met and the two of us went out a few more times.  We talked daily on the phone and emailed all the time.  The more I talked to her, the more I became confident in myself again.  The more I stood up for myself, the more verbally abusive he got.

One of the times I went to see her, he showed up at her house.  I had not told him where she lived but he showed up.  He started yelling see, I know where she lives, I know where she works, I can get you anywhere.  Now come back to the house where you belong.  I remember never feeling more scared in my life.  I didn't leave.

It was supposed to be a poly relationship, she was married too so she and I would date and nothing more.  He some how wanted it just to be sex and him involved in it some how though.  Something I was not for.

It was a crazy time period and some how we agreed to try counseling, so we went to see can you guess who?  You guessed it, my preacher from the past.  I remember sitting there in his office and deciding that the marriage was over and I could not keep living a lie.  I took off my wedding ring and for the first time felt free.

I moved down to be with her.  What an amazing three years I would then have.  Not perfect in any means, but amazing.  She walked with me through cancer and held my hand as I had surgery to fix it.  I fell in love for the first time.  I mean real love.  I would have laid down my life for her.  But like most good things in my life, I messed it up.  I broke her trust in me.

I worked for a clinic and messed up the book keeping.  Money came up missing and though I couldn't prove I didn't take it, I couldn't keep her trust.  See at one time I had over spent money and so she knew I had a spending problem.  She also knew of my past.  She also knew I was bipolar, alcoholic, and recovering addict.  I had everything going wrong for me.  I had the target on me and nothing saying that I didn't do it.  So the love of my life, she left and move to Tennessee.  Leaving me behind.

The clinic pressed charges and I found myself in front of a judge again.  This time I had good representation.  I would have done anything for that clinic and still would.  So I agreed to pay and went on probation.

I moved in with my folks after a few months of trying to live on my own.  I couldn't cut it.  I had gone into a depression and also could not make ends meet.  I was lucky that the folks let me move in with them.

After a few months, the girl I used to date that I fought for with that guy a few paragraphs back before my exhusband, well she came back into my life.  She now lived in Colorado.  So for awhile, we talked long distance and I would take time and go see her when I could.

Soon I moved her and her daughter down to live with me and we got a place.  Didn't take long though for her to start using drugs and drink all the time.  She became a different person.  I soon picked up and used too.  How else was I to deal with it?  She became verbally, mentally, and sexually abusive.  She would hit walls, throw things around and I feared that one day I would be the object of her fists.

I was the blame of pain, anger, and everything that went wrong.  I was why she used and drank.  I was what was wrong.  And I began to believe I was no good and didn't need to be there any more.  I started to believe I was no good to anyone.  Everyone left or asked me to leave anyways.  And I didn't want my son to find me like this.  So I did something that I had done a hundred times before, I tried to commit suicide.  This time though, I got closer then ever.

After three days of sedation, I woke up in the hospital.  My mom was there, asked if I was ok and that was it.  The second day I was awake, the girlfriend came and broke up with me saying she couldn't be with someone as crazy as me.  I stayed in the hospital for another two weeks.  While I was in, my folks got my stuff and my dog.  They put it all in storage and held on to my dog for me.

I stayed in a hotel for a couple weeks when I first got out and then moved into a friends condo.  I really didn't like that and soon my folks asked if I wanted to come home.  That is where I am now.

Ever since the one I was with after my exhusband left, I started questioning my religion.  I started feeling not heard.  I really felt that way when this last one did her number on me.  So, I did what I always do, I reached out to my preacher friend.  I started meeting with him.

I began going to his church.  Started meeting some people and started listening.  I didn't know but change was coming.  I just knew something was missing, paganism didn't work anymore, and I needed spiritual help.

On my way to church one Sunday, I prayed "God, Christian God, if this is where I am to be, give me a sign!"  And in the sermon that day I heard, "pagans run" "come home" and "I accept you"  That service I went up front and placed membership.

I know just a few things!  I am gay and I don't care who knows now!  I know God loves me and has a plan!  And I know that my story is not over yet!

Now I am helping my church learn how to be more accepting to the LGBT community.  I write this blog.  I have friends all over from all walks of religions and life.  And I would not change one thing!  I am blessed.  So will you walk with me on the rest of this path?

Monday, May 1, 2017

My God, You Are My God!

My God, You Are My God!

You were there from the begining.
You were there for each step.
You were there for each success.
You were there for each fall.
You were there.

You never stopped caring, though I turned away.
You never stopped hoping, though I pushed away.
You never stopped blessing, though I sent away.
You never stopped loving, though I blocked away.
You never stopped.

You are true to Your word.
You are true to Your people.
You are true to Your creation.
You are true to Your passion.
You are true.

So my God, You are forgiving.
So my God, You are accepting.
So my God, You are caring.
So my God, You are loving.
So my God, You are my God!

Tapestry Retreat Recap

I could start this out by saying "What happens at Tapestry, stays at Tapestry!" But then how would you my reader know how great it was?  The little line on it where it says a spiritual journey is something that should not be taken lightly!  It is just that!

Before I begin to tell my experience I would like to say that no names will be used.  Tapestry is a safe place and confidentiality is a big thing to provide that safety.  So no names, no pictures of others, just my experience.

I hopped in my car at the crack of dawn Thursday morning and began my trek from Houston, TX to Memphis, TN.  With each mile I drove, my anxiety rose.  I tried to calm it by doing some touristy things like stopping at the state tourist information places.  

I had hoped on the drive to listen to a book called "God and the Gay Christian" by Matthew Vines yet I found myself not able to concentrate on the book and drive at the same time.  So that book review will come at a later time.  I instead listened to music and thought about what to expect from the retreat.  My anxiety grew as I mentioned.  I was going to something new where I didn't know any one except for an email to one lady and one phone call.

This was so out of my comfort zone!  I kept thinking what am I doing!  It is not too late to turn around!  Yet, I was on a mission.  I had talked to my preacher about going on this trip and he had asked me to get some nuggets to help the church be accepting of the LGBT community into the church.  This no longer was a trip for me, but a trip to help the church.  How could I let them down?  And besides, I could not let you the reader down and not come back and tell you about it.

So after ten hours I arrived to the most beautiful campground I have ever seen.  Relieved to not be driving any more I turned off the car for the last time and got out.  As I was getting my things, a lady I am glad to call my friend came out and asked if she could help me carry in.  And right away I felt not only accepted but wanted at this event.  That feeling didn't stop either through out the weekend.

I am not going to get into the details of everything that we did through the weekend, that would spoil it for you if you ever decide to go.  I will say this, it gave a space that I could and others could have open conversations about any thing.

We talked about how such things like community, labels that people put on us and how we can combat them, what it means to be a Gay Christian, and so much more.  We played games together.  We grew bonds that I know will be long lasting.

Tapestry is about so much.  It is a God send!  God inspired!  God driven! It is an event for the people that allows the people to freely be themselves and not worry about judgment.  Will I go back?  Every time Tapestry happens, I will make a way to be there!  My world is improved because of it!

I left Sunday to make the drive back with not just tools to give the church, tools to use in my life, answers to some questions, questions I did not know I had, challenges to work through, challenges to make some things happen, ideas for this blog, which right there that list is already a lot, but also a deeper connection to God.

So I recommend to anyone Tapestry.  I recommend Centerpeace.  The people who run it are amazing and one day I hope to volunteer my services to help grow their mission!  

To learn more go to