..::|:.: Scattered Words

"in brokeness, I could see, that this was your will for me..." :: Jeremy Camp

6.04.2004

What didn't work 5.

This is going to be a tough one for some of you, so bare with me. Hear me out, then fire away (as if you wouldn't anyway).

"...it seemed for a time that the answer we were looking for was to accept and embrace our supposedly innate gay identity ... those of us who did so found it to be an exhilarating, freeing experience -- temporarily. ... No longer were we hiding in shame. No longer would we beat ourselves up with self-criticism and so-called "homophobia." At last we were "out and proud."

I've never been out and proud. Never will be able to, either. Aside from the guys I've been with, I've admitted to exactly two people that I'd ever even touched a guy.

I once wondered if I could go on forever, living one life here in the closet, another in the light of day. I wondered how long I could ignore what God was saying to me, showing me. Then I wondered how long I could go on destroying myself; denying the Spirit that lived in me.

"Almost universally, we felt alienated from God and our spiritual lives. We were out of integrity with our deeply held values and beliefs that had always anchored our lives. ..."

It amazes me, sometimes, how we as Christians feel like we can never let the smile drop from our faces. If we're honest, we often find ourselves to all be broken, hurting. You wouldn't know it to step into the church, though. And I wonder if the people in my church would be surprised to read these words if they knew who wrote them. I've lived such the good Christian life in front of everyone I know, serving God and being an example for others to follow. But, the image I projected to them couldn't be further from the truth. To say I was "out of integrity" is a massive understatement. I was crippled and bleeding and learned well how to hide it. I still hide it, except for here where I write. (Part of me wonders though, why no one ever noticed).

"A common experience among us what that we experienced the gay world as a place that was fraught with promiscuity, lust, obsession with youth and physical appearance, addiction to sex, alcohol and lust. We found judgment, pettiness, spiritual darkness and brokenness. Although we experienced small pieces of healing there at times, for the most part, it only deepened the emotional and spiritual emptiness inside."

There are those here that would die fighting to proove that quote wrong. There are those here dying inside because they deny its validity.

And it's why I'm here. No statement ever rings 100 percent true, and that statement doesn't paint a 100 percent accurate tried and true picture of the gay community. I can already see the e-mails many of you are writing to me now to point that out. No need. I know it's not a crystal clear digital snapshot, but maybe a softer watercolor.

And it's in those blurry lines that I get lost. Part of me really, really wants to be out and proud. Why? Because it's the road many travel -- the easy one, the accepted one. I'm not strong, I'm not courageous and I'm not made of steel. I break real easily and I tire just as quickly. Seriously, at this point, that busy road is far far far more appealing than the one I'm on. It's rush hour but sometimes I'd gladly drive in it anyway.

When I think that maybe, maybe I could "survive" in the gay world; that I could possibly exist there (forget about being fulfilled or happy) without my nature tearing me to pieces inside, I'm tempted. When I weigh the choice of denying myself, my God, and embracing the alternatives -- well, I wonder how much I can let the scale tip before I fall off.

Then I read statements like the one above. I remember what I experienced first hand for my self; what I observed without anyone ever telling me. I remember how true it rang for me. I remember what awaits me at the end of each of these roads.

I wish I could throw all this doubt away. I wish that things could be easier. I wish the road I were on was shorter and easier to travel. Sometimes, I just wish I had a map. Good thing I'm not the one driving.