Today, I am writing over at Deeper Story about my relationship with God and how it (truly) started after I began loving myself. I’ve always had thoughts on the conversion experience, namely that it’s not a 30-second prayer, but a lifetime of growth, change, conversion. But it starts with self-acceptance. It begins between you and your own cracked up heart.
Here’s how it starts:
The first morning of the Gay Christian Network Conference, Linda and Rob Robertson stood on the stage behind the podium. As is typical, I arrived late. The ballroom was dark enough for no one to notice me, so I slid into the furthest back row.
I had known their story, their mission, I watched the video about their gay son who passed away after a drug overdose, but I really didn’t know them.Their individual journeys. Not simply as parents, but as people, as Christians. And there was one moment of the talk I will never forget.
Linda, face reddened by tears, talked about how, growing up, she learned and believed wholeheartedly that God loves every single person in the world. God is Love. That is Christian 101. Plain and simple as the cross.
“He’s a God who loves and loves every single one of us, but I always wondered… me? Could he possibly love me?”
I dropped a few tears that moment and I think she knew we could relate. As for me, she had asked myquestion. The Ultimate Question. The question that crouched into every corner of every moment throughout my Life in the Closet. Could he possibly?
I was born into this faith. I prayed the Sinner’s Prayer at five years old and I believed those words of prayer would encircle like a charm. As if this promise held the power to protect me from anything bad in the world, from anyone that would want to hurt me. I believed in the Church, I felt safe in the Church, and I felt all the more held to be officially part of her people.
Then I found out I was gay.