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I was born fifty-one years ago in a small town in northeast Georgia. From my earliest years I knew that I was somehow different from other boys my age, though I didn't have the words to accurately describe myself. By the time I was nine years old I came to admit to myself that I was a homosexual. It was also at the age of nine that I accepted Jesus Christ as my personal savior. At age thirteen I became involved with the Southern Baptist Church in my hometown. I respected the Pastor very much and looked to him as a father figure, my own father being an alcoholic that never made the effort to bond with any of his children.

At the age of fifteen my Pastor delivered a sermon on the evils of homosexuality in which he said that all homosexuals would spend eternity in Hell. This caused me to question my own salvation, so I went to talk to my Pastor about this "evil" that he had unknowingly accused me of. His response was to order me to never darken the doorway of his church again until I had repented of my sin and changed. He also told my parents that I was homosexual. My parents had me committed to the state hospital for the mentally ill, where I underwent electric shock therapy for 4.5 months in an attempt to "cure" me of my homosexuality. Finally, I was interviewed by a female European doctor who told me that homosexuality was not an illness. She discharged me.

My parents would not permit me to come back home because I had not been "cured". I ended up the only student in my high school who lived in a rooming house. I worked a full time job in addition to finishing high school. My family had broken off all contact with me.

My adult life led me away from following the Lord. I became an alcoholic and drug abuser. I blamed all my problems on my family's having disowned me as a youth. I came back to the Lord as an adult when I visited a Metropolitan Community Church in Chicago. There the Pastor taught me that I was gay because God had created me that way and that He loved me no less than His heterosexual children. I recommitted my life to Jesus Christ, and for the first time in my life I can truly say that I am happy. Jesus has taken the place of my parents and brothers who still have nothing to do with me. He is my family and my life.

Now I look upon my homosexuality as a gift from God because it has helped to teach me not to judge my fellowman. I have been in a gay relationship with the same man for twenty years now and have created my own family. I am very thankful to God for his watching over me all the years that I doubted Him and did not live for Him.

If you doubt His love for you just yield to Him and let Him take you up when all others let you down. He can bless your life and He can serve as your family. All you need to do is accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior and you, too, can enter the family of God.

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