Sunday, April 26, 2009

Born That Way

The recent controversy surrounding a reparative therapy conference in London got me thinking about the dividing concept of whether or not homosexuals (active or not) are "born that way." This isn't going to be a post about the scientific validity of that concept. Personally, I think it can be quite valid in many cases, and I suggest the writings of Dr. Warren Throckmorton if you want a very balanced scientific and cultural view of the controversy. My interest, however, is less about the hard facts but more about the attitudes that I've observed many SSA men and women seem to take to the idea that they, indeed, may have been "born that way."

It's a rather odd subject, really. If I had to sum it up easily, I think I'd say that the majority of SSA men and women I've met and observed have a strong aversion to the idea that they were born with gay feelings. This isn't because they simply disagree with the research done about it, either. To me, it seems like there's this idea that, if you're "born gay," then it's immutable and you can't change it and you might as well go and "life the lifestyle." Likewise, if environmental factors cause SSA, then it's mutable and you can go through a 12-step process and change it or something. I know that's quite a generalization, but those are the two more prevalent lines of thinking that I've seen. I find them really odd, firstly because biology doesn't necessarily equate to immutability, nor does environment equate to mutability.

Many Christians have speculated over the years that even if a "gay gene" was found (and this is a very simplistic view, since biological causes don't automatically have to be genetic), then the Christian position on homosexuality wouldn't change. This is true. We're born into sinful natures and none of us get to pick and choose which temptations we deal with, nor do we get to choose how firmly rooted they are, or how long we may have to deal with them. However, the same Christians who state that correct theological position often go to great lengths to say that homosexuality is not biological, and they seem to usually do it out of the presupposition that dealing with past wounds will "cure" homosexuality.

Now, before I go any further, I'll say that I have no problem with someone who wants to deal with childhood hurts or abuses. I have nothing but respect for them and I wish them the best of luck. What concerns me is that these things are being dealt with not because the individual wants to become a healthier adult, but because he or she wants to live up to the American Christian expectation of a spouse and children. To be fair, I'm not saying that it's all about keeping up appearances. Many people can't imagine themselves being happy unless they're normal. I certainly know all about that.

But don't we sell ourselves short if we only see what everyone else has as our ultimate goal? I know celibacy is difficult, but it's not a death sentence nor is it a proclamation that you're going to be lonely and miserable. It all depends on what you make of it. The main problem I see with people who react very negatively against the "born that way" concept is that they want too much control. If you think that your SSA came from environmental factors, then you at least have the luxury of being able to think of ways to deal with those factors and change your feelings (even though the evidence for that is shaky at best).

You can't do anything to deal with possible gene sequences or hormonal levels in your mother's womb, though. You have to just be content with dealing with temptations day by day, and maybe developing an honest, trusting, respectful relationship with someone you might call your wife or husband one day. An unconventional relationship, maybe. They may be the only person you're attracted to, and it may take time and patience, and it might not be a good idea at all and you might have to deal with being celibate and content in that way. Still, I find that option to be a much healthier one than spending extraordinary amounts of time, combing through childhood memories looking for the slightest hurt, just to rationalize away the concept that you might be born that way.

Personally, I do think that my SSA is more biological. I don't have any major childhood traumas (thank the Lord). My father and brother gave me a great sense of masculinity growing up. I have always got on well with men even though I was a bit of a "geek" in school. I was athletic in high school and even today guys are whom I prefer to hang around. I'm still attracted to men, though. That's okay with me. I've dealt with the issues and I'm okay with saying that if I was born to fulfill a celibate role in the Church, then God's will be done. I really am fine with it, despite the difficulties. And I really hope that all Christians struggling with SSA, even if they pursue change and are avoiding of the idea that they might have been born that way, can get to a place where they can be content with the concept that they might be celibate, single, and SSA for the rest of their lives. It shouldn't be a mark of shame, since all Christians deal with something till their dying day. After all, we're all born that way.

33 comments:

Neo said...

Good post! One quick correction - you say "if environmental factors cause SSA, then it's immutable..." where I think you meant "mutable."

I have come to the conclusion (largely from reading Dr. Throckmorton's writing, different people's blogs and testimonies, and the like) that the cause of SSA is likely different for different people, although we really don't seem to know enough to say for sure. It does seem to be the case that some people do experience quite a bit of change in their attractions, often but not always due to reparative therapy or something similar, while others try the same things and don't experience any change at all. I think we should be comfortable admitting that different people have different experiences, as I believe you do.

As for me personally, when I started the process of change, I was all about becoming "normal" and not having SSA feelings. When I did experience changes such as discovering that nonsexual relationships with guys could be quite fulfilling for me, or that I could handle community showers and come out feeling more masculine rather than lusting, I thought my sexual orientation was changing. I now realize that may have been premature, as I certainly still do have SSA feelings. I guess now I'm more OK than ever with the idea that there may be a significant biological component to my attractions. I do still think that the experiences I had from peers in childhood did have a significant role as well, and it still seems possible to me that without these experiences I would only have OSA. It's just that dealing with those feelings does more to heal the problems surrounding SSA than to get rid of SSA itself. I've discovered that SSA itself just isn't that bothersome, though, when it doesn't lead me to lustful thoughts or feelings of shame. Of course, given that I have always had opposite-sex feelings as well, I don't have the same worry about being called to celibacy.

I guess in conclusion, my view is that people should deal with any issues surrounding SSA, including any childhood traumas that may exist, but should not look for something that probably isn't there. For some people, this may lead to change in sexual feelings (either an increase in OSA, a decrease in SSA, or both), but such changes are a poor measure of success and may or may not happen for different people. I certainly wouldn't think less of someone for not changing on an attraction metric and don't think anyone should, although unfortunately people do. The most important thing is for a person to be in tune with God's will and follow wherever He leads, whether that means celibacy or marriage. I an equally saddened by those people who put all of their stock in changing their sexual feelings and those who don't consider the possibility at all. From what I understand, my view is not that different from yours.

Jay said...

Hey Neo! No, your view is not that different from mine at all. In fact, I'd say it's pretty much right in line with it. Very wise thoughts, and thank you for the correction. It's been fixed. :)

Brandon said...

I've always felt that environment probably played a bigger role in my own case. However, I really don't think it should matter. Frankly, I'm pretty much at a point where I just don't care.

If I'm Christian, it shouldn't matter how I turned out to be gay. What should matter is whether or not I'm going to act on those desires and sin. My goal shouldn't be to change myself from gay to straight. Though, if I wanted to try that, then why not?

If I wasn't a Christian, likewise, why should it really matter? If you're a gay non-Christian, then why care about what every other gay person does or thinks? If some want to change, let them--it's they're business. If others don't want to change, let them. Sort of a live and let live approach.

Everybody is different. I'm sure everyone gay has some idea about why or how that happened. I think, well, really I guess I agree with you. I dislike the whole attitude thing everyone has about this question.

Mark said...

To me, it seems like there's this idea that, if you're "born gay," then it's immutable and you can't change it and you might as well go and "life the lifestyle."I know you have that in scare quotes but it's one of the most annoying claims I hear since I've come out.

"live the lifestyle". What does that mean? _the_ presumes some single way of behaving.

My experience is that just as opposite-gender couples have a myriad ways of living their relationship out, so do same-gender couples.

My lifestyle includes a number of things that, taken on the surface, would be hard to distinguish from my next door neighbors who got married last Fall.


Another way to respond to it is to simply tell the truth and learn how to be content in it. That makes people uncomfortable as well (as I'm sure you've experienced).

donsands said...

"It shouldn't be a mark of shame, since all Christians deal with something till their dying day."

I think we can be ashamed of our lusts, and yet be grateful, and rejoice that Christ took our shame upon His broken body, and washed our sin,(whether lustful unbiblical thoughts, or deeds (speaking evil of no man, lovers of pleasure), or omission of deeds we are charged with, (praying without ceasing, esteeming others higher then ourselves), in His precious blood.

There are some deep things here to think on. Thanks for sharing your heart Jay.

Joshua Cookingham said...

Wow, amazing Jay. You hit the nail on the head.

I know a lot of heterosexual christians struggle to the point of choosing to remain celibate as well.

Thanks for writing this, God Bless!

Jay said...

Brandon: Well, I don't think there's anything wrong with having a genuine curiosity about what the origins of SSA are. Nor do I think any gay individual really cares if someone like you or I remains celibate or seeks to change their orientation.

I think where people (including myself) start to get concerned is when these origin theories are used to inspire unhealthy thinking patterns in people (i.e. combing one's childhood for wounds that might not even be there) or when ex-gays are held up as a political weapon. These are people's lives here, and I think a lot of the debate surrounding homosexuality in both science and politics kind of forgets that.

Mark: Well, that's what the scare quotes were for. :)

Don Sands: Wise words. I suppose when I said that it shouldn't be a mark of shame, I meant in relation to other Christians. Many Christians who deal with same-sex attraction see themselves as "lesser" than hetero-oriented Christians because of this.

This attitude is sometimes self-imposed, and sometimes it's an attitude that the Church (even ministries designed to reach out to homosexuals) helps to produce, intentionally or not.

Also, I don't think that my SSA is simply "lust." Certainly that's part of it, and I'm ashamed of my lusts and sexual fantasies as much as any Christian should be. However, even on days when lust isn't a big problem for me, I still find men attractive in a non-lustful way (similar to how you no doubt see women as beautiful in a non-lustful way).

This is why I'm celibate, because I can't start a relationship with a woman if there isn't even basic non-sexual attraction, let alone sexual attraction. Hope that makes sense. Thank you for stopping by, and God bless!

A. Friend said...

Yes. For a long time I believed that I was (empirically) worth less than other people because of my SSA.

Also, I have found that many a straight person makes that error with the term "lust"--not really understanding what it is at all; and what the difference between sexual attractions and "lusts" are.

Issues of sexuality tend to confuse them.

Maybe Christians with SSA are here to bring back clarity to this issue in a church consumed by the popular culture?

donsands said...

"Hope that makes sense."

Actually, for me, sense is only one attraction for the sexes. SSA doesn't make sense to me. To be honest Jay.

But, God has allowed for us so much to think about. So I appreciate His hand of providence upon my life, to bring me out of darkness into His light. Yet even in the light, there are shadows, and looking into "mirrors dimly" (1 Cor. 13:12).

And there are crystal clear truths, which the Lord so graciously has set, in cement, before us.

You shall be greatly used by the Lord. Jesus has great things for you. Keep on hating sin, and loving Christ.

Jay said...

A Friend: Haha, well that's quite a responsibility, isn't it? I do think SSA brings a lot of issues to the forefront that can often be shoved under the rug. I'm not sure if that's why God allows us to struggle with this, but if that's the reason, I'm okay with it.

I'd be curious to hear what your ideas about the differences between lust and attraction are. For me, I see lust as consciously thinking about wanting to have sex with the person, while attractions are the involuntary reactions to the person's physical features. It's certainly not a well-defined subject for me, and you're right, it's a confusing subject for many Christians.

I suppose what I mean to say is that straight Christian men rarely say they need to repent of saying that Angelina Jolie is pretty, but they would if they had a fantasy about her. Likewise, I don't think it's wrong for me to recognize that Hugh Jackman was blessed with extremely good looks, but my thoughts need to stay there.

Don Sands: Thank you for the encouragement, Don. Equally, thank you for simply listening. I sometimes am a little dumb when it comes to how foreign SSA must be to someone who has never dealt with it at all, but I do think that you're genuine in your attempts to be compassionate and understand, and that's really a blessing. Take care!

A. Friend said...

Jay, those are my exact thoughts on the matter.

Lusts are explicit sexual thoughts; sexual attractions on the other hand are physiological and involuntary.

The next time someone claims to be confused, ask them if they are currently in an arranged or forced marriage. If not, then they clearly picked their current spouse/girlfriend/fiancee--and not after a series of interviews either (hehe...).

But one would be quite confused about the difference if one has never had the experience of asking: "What is going on? Why do I always stare at Janet? Why do I blush when she speaks to me?"

pursuegod said...

Great post, Jay!

Becky said...

I just finished reading a great book titled, "Dominance & Delusion" by M.A. Curtis. The book attempts to answer a variety of questions that most people may have concerning various world issues. One thing he brought up was homosexuality. He points out that homosexual predisposition is both normal and natural and that at one time it had significant survival potential. There was a lot of really interesting stuff that I hadn't ever thought about before.

donsands said...

Becky,

Do you believe the truth of Scripture?

Jay said...

A Friend: I think your example of "blushing when Janet speaks to you" is a good way to describe what attraction is as opposed to lust. Except in our case, it's John instead of Janet. :)

Pursue God: Thanks!

Becky: Well, I think what I was trying to say in this post is that it's very possible for homosexual feelings to be innate and natural (and you're correct to point out that they do occur in the natural world, though I don't like being compared to monkeys and penguins). My view on the matter is that even if I was born this way, I still have a responsibility to live out God's will by not having gay sex, even if to me it feels as natural as breathing.

That's really the Christian way, isn't it? We're naturally set up to be competitive, look out for our own survival over that of others, and live out the desires of our hearts (be they things like anger or sexual promiscuity). In other words, we're born to sin, which is why we needed Christ to die for our sins, and why He is the only way we have a hope of overcoming them. Hope you have a great day!

Matthew Blake Williams said...

Hi Jay,

My Google Reader recommended your blog... glad it did. I appreciate the post & your thoughts on celibacy - it's not a death sentence. I, too, am gay, celibate, and a follower of Jesus and every day am excited about the possibilities life holds as a single person learning and following the Way.

Peace to you!

-Matthew

Natural Substance said...

Excellent post, dear. I might not agree with you very much, but I have to admire your views & how you walk the talk. As always, you've inspired me to think about something a little differently.

Jay said...

Matthew: It's an absolute pleasure to meet you! Don't ever be afraid to stop by and chat. :)

God bless!

Natural Substance: You fabulous diva, I think the fact that we disagree on so little but still get along so well is an amazing thing. You make me thing about things differently, as well, and I'm eternally grateful for it.

Don't forget to invite me over to your apartment whenever you make your chili. :)

Jon Carl Lewis said...

thank you for sharing this post - and your life. i'm pleased to know you as a brother in Christ.

ssa is soooo much more than lust for me - unless one can speak of a desire for strong, male, iron-sharpening-iron friendship as something to have a positive lust for.

i'm old enough to be well acquainted with that old serpent, my lustful nature, yet - through the grace of God, i am starting to desire a closer fellowship than that offered by the conventional church - or even that offered by the "non-spiritual" friendships with which my life has beene blessed.

i think ssa lust has something to offer in terms of feeling powerless before our own natures, yet hopeful that God is calling us to allow him to transform and transfigure that which is unclean into a holy crusade.

again, thanks for sharing, and reading my comments.

blessings

Yesh said...

I like your post. It is fun to read other people's interpretations of sexuality.
I think the world is all one large fantasy, and we are far from home within that inner "Kingdom" of oursevles. The idea that masculinity for instance, is something to strive for, the alpha male fantasy etc, is just that, a fantasy. Either ya get caught up in it or you don't.
I know a lot of "alpha males" very comfortable with their maleness but sooo screwed up on other levels, so it's a bit like pick your own poison. If one chooses to make gay sex or sex in general their folly, then so be it, it is how they will judge their worth, as to how much they do not do it and how proud they can be from abstaining.
Self acceptance is found in a multitude of ways, but I don't think it's really about God's way or the highway regarding gay sex. I just don't see God as having emotions like humans and doing the polarity good and evil dance. I think that's pretty low ball action in the bigger scheme of things.
Does God care? Sure, but I think that is all he does as judging is well, pretty human and fairly nasty.
If he were to catch a heaven train to give us the latest, I doubt it would be about gay sex, as gay sex is a loving sharing natural human thing. I think he would be more focused on fear inducing things, like murder corporate greed, self imposed homophobia stealing from the poor etc, lying betraying addictions, things that really hurt peoples lives.
If there were things God was really worried about, which I think is probably not in his unconditional love programming, I think he or Jesus would have shown up off and on for a pep talk.
I mean, if my little sister starts screaming, mom or dad do appear, like in an instant. They don't just leave her wailing with the possibility of her ending up in the basement storage container for eternity via a judgment by my dad. Now if I had my way . . . well . . . that's brothers and sisters for ya. :)
So in the end, when everything physical disappears and we go back home, I don't think it will be about what you did or some such, it will be more all smiles and "did ya have a good time?"

Hopefully we can all say a perky "yes"! :)

TRiG said...

Nature? Nurture? Everything is caused by the interplay of both. And even something as basic as eye colour depends on the interplay of many genes (and non-genetic factors such as diet).

Certainly the "causes" of sexuality are a fascinating scientific question, but I don't see that any moral ruling depends in any way on the outcome. It's a question in which I feel no personal stake.

(In fact, this is one of the very few areas in which I agree with that awful charlatan Dr James Dobson.)

TRiG.

Jay said...

Yesh: Thanks for stopping by the blog, but do forgive me if all I can really respond with is, "Huh?"

TRiG: Actually, I pretty much agree with you. I don't think one's moral view of homosexuality (whatever it is) really changes depending on what the causes are.

donsands said...

Yesh,

What's your belief in Christ's death and resurrection? if you don't mind me asking.

A. Friend said...

"Certainly the "causes" of sexuality are a fascinating scientific question, but I don't see that any moral ruling depends in any way on the outcome"-------

Shhh!
You're not supposed to let the secret out!

Yesh said...

My apologies for the late response, life's tsunami's got a hold of me. :)

Donsands,

Thanks for your question. My belief is that through the crucifixion Jesus saw all that crucified him as innocent and sinless thereby demonstrating the full and complete definition of forgiveness. In essence, he saw no sin and therefore for Him, there was nothing to forgive. He saw his abusers as nothing less than his brothers in love. This is what we all desire to achieve, so in His example we see our true potential.
I see the resurrection is an example that death does not exist and that the atonement at-one-ment with the Father was fully accomplished upon his rising beyond the perceptions the body holds, which are untrue and not our true selves.

Jay,

Regarding "huh?". The post was to depict that God as judgmental damning and tyrannical in the Bible is in the realm of ego, separation and human perspective which God is not, so I used an example of a human family to make a point. Sorry if it didn't come off that way to you. But that is how it was intended.
In my learning, I have found there are only two goals; one is total and complete forgiveness of everyone and everything because our mental perceptions are filled with trickery, and the other is uniting with the Father within also known as the Atonement. Jesus taught that there is no death nor fear or sin, only everlasting love innocence and eternal life, which we all share at once as the "separated" Sons of God. Would the Father teach anything less?
Therefore Heaven is not a place we adventure to go, because from Spirit's perspective, we never left. We only "think" we did, the grandest illusion of all. Those are the blinders we are constantly trying to remove in order to understand that truth.
I also see different interpretations can create drama and conflict as to who is right and who is wrong thereby camouflaging the real goal. So in a sense, the elusive details do not matter to me as such. If I am in conflict with anyone or anything I have attested to fear, which is not of God and keeps me blind to loves presence. Keeping my eye on the prize goal of forgiveness and atonement is where I generally like to maintain my focus. And we ALL know how hard that can be. :)

Jay said...

Yesh, with all due respect, the reason I said "huh?" was because, even now, none of this makes sense. Your theories seem to have no basis other than your own flights of fancy (which, granted, I'm sure TRiG could probably say the same thing about mine).

Nowhere in Scripture is Christ's crucifixion described in the way you described it. In fact, it's quite the opposite. Christ certainly did call upon his tormentors to be forgiven, but to say that he saw them as "his brothers in love" is simply ridiculous. To forgive someone, that means that they have to have first done wrong to you.

I'm not trained to be an apologetic, and in any case it's a busy time of year for me. All I can say is that you really need to study Scripture and see who Christ says He is, and if your perception of who He is matches that. The way you're making it sound, it's extremely off, though I'll admit I'm still not quite sure what you're saying.

Yesh said...

Your lack of understanding of which you speak, does not resonate. I think you know exactly what I am saying and it has caused you anger judgement and fear, which has closed your heart. If you have confusion about my comments you are free to ask for clarification, but you do not.

This is what I mean about difference of belief causing conflict. It is necessary if one chooses to know love and evolve, that we all learn that there will be difference of opinion and that there will never be one theology that will satisfy everyone. That is completely hopeless.

However, everyone does know or wants to know love, both within and without. And this is what the story of Jesus is about. It is the teaching of release from fear for a unified experience of loving each other of which we can all potentially attest because love is a universal language, while dropping the drama of opinion fear and confusion different doctrines or minds in general profess. They are after all, just beliefs. Many of which are as flimsy as the wind.

So I will ask you a question. With no "agenda" and a want for nothing in return, how have you "loved your neighbor" lately extending beyond your everyday limits? I do not request a response. It is a question for you to contemplate within yourself.

Jay said...

Yesh, the fact that I don't understand what your point is doesn't mean that I'm responding in "anger, judgment, and fear." I just seriously don't see what you're trying to say, or how it has any real relevance to the topic of the post at hand.

christian college said...

Hi,However, everyone does know or wants to know love, both within and without. And this is what the story of Jesus is about. It is the teaching of release from fear for a unified experience of loving each other of which we can all potentially attest because love is a universal language, while dropping the drama of opinion fear and confusion different doctrines or minds in general profess. They are after all, just beliefs. Many of which are as flimsy as the wind. . Thanks for very nice post.

TRiG said...

A look at Karen Armstrong's book The Bible: The Biography might, or might not, help us to understand what Yesh is talking about. I must get my copy back from the friend I lent it to.

Jay, on the subject of religion: They're all the same.

TRiG.

donsands said...

"I see the resurrection is an example that death does not exist.." Yesh

Huh?

"After these things Jesus showed Himself once more to the disciples at the sea of Tiberias; and he revealed himself in this way." John 21:1

This is where Jesus was on the shore, while Peter and the disciples were fishing; however catching nothing. Jesus shouted out to them to try fishing on the other side of the boat. They then caught 153 fish, (John must have counted them; he was a fisherman), and Jesus tells them to bring some of the fish, and they have brunch togther there on the beach: The risen Lord Jesus Christ with his five disciples: Peter, John, James, Nathanael, and doubting Thomas, who isn't doubting that Jesus rose from the dead any more.

Jesus then had His famous discussion with Peter about whether Peter loved Him or not, which I leave for you to go and read, and study on your own.

Another statement from John for you Yesh, that proves Jesus was dead, and rose three days later.
"That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we looked upon and have touched with our hands, concerning the word of life—" (1 John 1:1)

The Apostle John, also the friend of Christ, wrote these words about His Lord, so that we might trust in Christ, and believe the truth, and so repent of our sin, and turn from our human ways, and turn to Christ Jesus, and receive forgiveness of sin, and eternal life.

Yesh, I pray you would here the truth of God's Word. Amen.

TRiG said...

The word proof, when applied to matters of religion, always strikes me as somewhat amusing. The more so when you consider how ignorant most Christians are of the history of Biblical interpretation. By no means is the Bible a simple book. It has no obvious meaning. (In fact, it has no coherent message at all: it's a mish mash.)

Most Christians who are familiar with the Bible (which is not the majority), will know their own church's interpretation of many passages. But they will have no idea how those same passages have been interpreted by other Christians over two millennia of theology.

The straightforward, almost aggressively non-mystical approach of much modern Christianity is very much an aberration.

Most modern Christians would not recognise or be recognised by their forebears.

I'm not sure which of Yesh and donsands is further in belief and attitude from those who wrote the Bible text they're both quoting.

I must get that Karen Armstrong book back, and read it properly this time. I went through it too fast the first time. It deserves to be studied.

TRiG.

Yesh said...

Donsands --- I do respect your thoughts on the subject of death and resurrection. My message concerning the non existence of death was meant at the soul level. Jesus's body did die, but his soul did not, nor does yours or mine. He had the power of knowing world view from only spirit only love, so he could re ignite his body at will, which he did. This was very profound.
You have a soft side to you that is evident in your writing.
I appreciate your prayers to hear God's word, but that is a bit of a problem. When I close my eyes it is all I hear, and it can be quite menacing to get all the words on paper and still have a somewhat normal life. So if you would pray for my general well being that would be greatly helpful, and I will surely do the same for you.

Trig--- It isn't easy being the lonely wolf with a strong message to deliver. But deliver you must. I have not heard of the book you mentioned, but there is a book you might check called A Course in Miracles where Jesus explains all aspects of his life in 1st person in the first 50 of an approx 1000 page document. I have read a small amount of it over the years and have found it quite profound. it is a little hard to take that it is written in first person, with Jesus speaking directly at the reader, but after a while, you do start to wonder how it could be anyone else. The Last Judgement, The Second Coming, I and my Father are One, God so Loved the World, The Crucifixion etc , , , and much more are explained in fine detail almost immediately upon opening the book.

CollegeChristian --- And thank you for listening. It is said that the meek shall inherit the earth. They will inherit the earth due to their very strength of heart, which you seem to have. You listen and you know. This is not an easy task to bear in a mental based world as insane as this one.

Jay --- Thank you for sharing your insights with me and others. With regard to your post and making my comments tie in, I would say there are many aspects to it that are right on and unflawed. However, I do not agree that God has destined all or any gay people to celibacy, nor do I believe he feels gay sexual expression an offense. In fact I believe the overly strong sex drive of humans compared say to animals with mating seasons, is so humans will love each other more, touch each other more, so as not to be too lonely in this world. For this world can be a lonely place bearing many lonely hearts.
Love and fear are quite separate emotions, and they do not know each other, yet they know of each other. God is only love. God does not know fear. Why would he create a human with sexual desire only to tell them they can't use it? Would a loving God create flowers and then tell them not to release their spores causing them to shake in fear at the very thought? What a fearful cruel God that would be! Such an act would be in the realm of Lucifer. And if Lucifer gets you isolated, and whispers in your ear relentlessly that you are bad for your sexual expression, the flower wilts as he has you locked in for his very own.
Now, if a bird were slamming it's head against a pane of glass trying to get out to fly freely, would God cut it's wings and ask it to walk about the world like a human? I think not! God would simply open a window so the bird could find itself flying freely again. In a sense you are like that bird trying to fly freely but keep butting heads with the complexities of mental mirage.
You might consider refraining from asking God to perfect you as a neuter, but to pull up the blinds so as to bring balance to your sexual expression quelling guilt so you can laugh with life's ebbs and flows freely and openly within the sexual arena.
Jesus's message is so very simple yet it gets lost in the mire of mental complexity. But it is quite clear when distilled down to it's most basic form. Fear less, love more. Fear yourself and others less, love yourself and others more.