Church Discipline Saved My Faith

Church discipline tends to get a bad rap. Pastors and congregations that practice it are often vilified as unloving, “religious” posers who misrepresent the tender and compassionate Christ. However, the tender and compassionate Christ was actually the first one to prescribe church discipline:

If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained your brother. But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every charge may be established by the evidence of two or three witnesses. If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church. And if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.” – Matthew 18:15-17

Years following Jesus’ instructions, Paul instructed the Corinthian church not to associate or even eat with a person who bears the name of Christ yet is guilty of perpetual, unrepentant sin (1 Corinthians 5:11-13). In the specific case of a man guilty of sexual immorality, he commanded the church to take the following action:

“For though absent in body, I am present in spirit; and as if present, I have already pronounced judgment on the one who did such a thing. When you are assembled in the name of the Lord Jesus and my spirit is present, with the power of our Lord Jesus, you are to deliver this man to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, so that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord.” – 1 Corinthians 5:3-5

The aim of church discipline is restoration, of course. In Paul’s next letter to the Corinthian church, he implores them to invite this [now repentant] man back into the fellowship:

“For such a one, this punishment by the majority is enough, so you should rather turn to forgive and comfort him, or he may be overwhelmed by excessive sorrow. So I beg you to reaffirm your love for him.” – 2 Corinthians 2:6-8

To be clear, Jesus and Paul were not describing the Christian continually battling sin. There is always a place in Christ’s church for the struggling saint—and good thing, because we all bear that badge. The person Jesus and Paul were describing is the one who claims to know Christ yet persists in unrepentant sin. They were describing the person who revels in iniquity with no remorse and who expresses no desire to cease from their rebellion. They were describing the obstinate, hardhearted person who professes faith but whose life bears no markings of that faith.

They were describing the person I was four years ago.

The first quarter of 2013 was a scary, sin-soaked season for me.  Depressive feelings were beating my happiness to death, and both Satan and my deceitful flesh were working double-time to convince me that the “restrictions” God imposed on my life were responsible for my misery. However, the truth was that an unrepentant disposition toward sin was solely responsible for every ounce of my misery. I had entered into an immoral relationship with someone and was unwilling to separate myself from that person and resume an obedient posture before Jesus.

I was very forthcoming with my pastor and fellow church members about my rebellion, as counterintuitive as that might seem. I wasn’t hiding my sins; they knew the ins and outs of the entire situation, and, as any truly loving church would do, they pleaded with me to turn from these poisonous vices and throw myself onto the mercies of God. They gently yet firmly insisted that my refusal to loosen my grip on sin was the reason for my soul’s anguish. With tears, they begged me to remember the goodness of Jesus and cling to him in humble trust, assuring me that faithful submission was the path to true peace.

But I plugged my ears to their pleas and continued in my sin. I still showed up at church, attended community group, and made regular late night visits to my pastor’s house (at his prodding) to talk about my “issues.” However, I persisted in my resistance against Christ’s call to repentance. I wasn’t “struggling” against my flesh; I was gladly and unashamedly embracing it.

Then the day of reckoning arrived. My pastor extended yet another invitation for me to turn from my sins and told me that, if I refused, we were going to have to move forward in the process of church discipline. He said he and other members of the church had confronted me on numerous occasions about my unwillingness to repent, and the next step would be the whole congregation confronting me and calling me to repentance. If in the months following that meeting I persisted in my rebellion, my exclusion from the covenant community would be the inevitable result. I would still be able to attend worship services, but I would no longer be a covenant member of the church. 

My hard heart finally began to tremble—not necessarily because I feared losing my church family (as great as they are), but because I realized that the consequences I was facing with my church were indicative of the consequences I would face with God. Just as I would be severed from the visible body of Christ if I refused to turn from my sin, I would be severed from Christ if I refused to turn from my sin. This prospect terrified me. Something inside of me still knew that there is no life better than one spent knowing and walking with Jesus. Something inside of me still knew that I would be destroyed by the wrath of the Lamb if I refused to love and obey him. Propelled by both a great fear of God and great longing for God, I ended the immoral relationship, set my gaze Heavenward, and began running after Jesus—and I have yet to stop.

By no means have the past four years been easy or free of sin. I still struggle with the flesh. However, my spiritual disposition is entirely different than it was before. I do not approach the Christian life passively. I do not view myself as a helpless victim. By the strength the Spirit supplies, I actively resist my sinful urges as I run after the Lord. And when I fall, I take responsibility for my sin, confess my sin, and, by God’s empowering grace, get back up and keep running. My life has changed for the incommunicably better since that step of repentance in 2013—a step that I’m not sure would have been taken had my church been unwilling to practice church discipline. Had they, in the name of “love,” merely given me silent smiles and affirming hugs as I rebelled against Christ, I don’t know where I would be today. I don’t know *who* I would be today.


  1. What a beautiful picture of a God who can neither ignore sin nor allow us to continue on as if it were inconsequential. So thankful that your church followed this Biblical procedure. Had your church either ignored the sin, or taken a very harsh “one strike, you’re out” approach, it seems very unlikely that your faith would be what it is today. Thank-you for a God and a church of second chances, and thank-you, Matt, for sharing a real-life illustration!

  2. A few weeks ago, I started bringing my neighbor to church, as he is going through depression over the loss of his wife. The pastor had made a key point in the sermon, and I touched him on the shoulder to draw his attention to it. It was very innocent enough, and I had no intentions, but a person in our congregation who knows of my past, called me out on it, to make sure I hadn’t lapsed back into the life. I was surprised, and even a little angered at first. I had worked so hard in living free from the gay lifestyle, didn’t they trust me.
    Later, I realized that it wasn’t a matter of trust, but it was because he cared, making sure I was still right with the Lord. He had been correct. I began at the next service to ask a number of people who know my past, to pray for me and to hold me accountable and if they see something, then to say something. I am easily tempted, and ONLY by the grace of God have I not succumbed to the temptation. He was absolutely right to question me, and I said so, because I never want to fall into that trap again.

    1. Bless you Bradley. That moved me. God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. You are in a great place brother to receive great grace. Thank you for your honesty and insight, and for sharing so that others would be helped.

    2. Wow. I mean, seriously…wow. You couldn’t even have a casual and innocent act of affection and caring towards another man, without raising suspicion?
      And yes, the reason was because many in the church and other religious communities HAVE been unloving and present gay people with impossible and rather cruel DOUBLE standards when it comes to having relationships.
      It WAS a matter of trust. Gay people aren’t trusted, and aren’t considered equal in needs, or desires or goals.
      No it WASN’T right for you to be questioned, and you are NOT THE ONLY ONE.
      Every other gay person has to keep living this suspicion down. And some have paid with their jobs, their families and their lives.
      So you assuring your church you’re ‘not that way’ or not that way any more, truly grieves me.
      It does.
      Because what I hear from church members and their expectations of gay people isn’t realistic, nor compassionate at all.
      It’s like being invited to a feast, but only allowed the crumbs people deign to leave you.
      While they gorge themselves, YOU are expected to be on a diet. And like being fed what they themselves never have to eat or worry about eating.
      I was raised in the church. And temple, for that matter.
      And at different times, when it’s been convenient to the power structure, those of us expected to stay on the margins, are told to behave this way, to not challenge what people think is loving, and generous authority over our lives.
      How sad that your act of affection was challenged at all. People should be free to treat each other that way.
      But again, double standards for the gay folk.
      And women for that matter.
      And sometimes for people of color too.

      1. But what if I had fallen back into the life style? What then? How much would God hold my friend accountable for not at least questioning me on it? Trust is one thing. I can be trusted to not steal money from the offering plate. But can I be trusted with other men? Given my past and how bad it was, I would say he was right to express concern.

      2. I have spent decades with gay folks such as yourself. And to be brutally frank, I truly just grieve for what you’re doing.
        I have no qualifications to know what it’s like to be gay. But I have eyes, I have ears, I have a brain.
        What I AM, is very, VERY empathetic to what I see a minority going through, to fit a heterosexual ideal that even heterosexuals can’t fit.
        Minority, as in gay or transgender, means RARE. And the world hasn’t made it easy, nor free to be gay.
        It’s HARD to be gay, in so many different areas of the world.
        Therefore, trying to find an oasis, some place to be comforted and needed and wanted…isn’t surprising.
        But religious communities saying that harbor is with THEM, at the expense of your identity, your freedom, and ability to navigate more than what’s inside church walls, is a lie.
        A very cruel one.
        There are less gay folks to go around, especially those who haven’t been damaged or done damage to each other because of the influence of anti gay hostility.
        Just as I see my fellow black folks in America having to navigate economic and socio/political disparity, their identity is tied up in hyper masculine cultural expression and misogyny. Hence, the traps set for them in sexual activity and emotional damage towards each other.
        I know what I’m witnessing.
        Gay people buying into the stereotypes, then going out of their way to assuage the ones who foment them.
        ‘Given my past’.
        What’s THAT supposed to mean?
        I’ve noticed that what gay people do, is treated like the greatest sin and shame, but it’s innocent when heterosexuals do it.
        Gay people are attracted to other gay folks, you have romantic and sexual feelings like heterosexuals do.
        And you’re expected to deny it, WHY?
        NONE of that has improved society in the least.
        Celibate, neutered gay people accomplish little, but can definitely be counted on to NOT challenge religious authority.
        Even when it bleeds into the socio/political sphere as public and civil policy.
        You’re not in the fight, that’s actually advanced FAR more freedoms than gay folks EVER saw before.
        I won’t slam you for not being strong enough to do so.
        But let me just say, the neutered, celibate gay people doesn’t and never did sound like themselves.
        Or act like themselves. There is a star bellied sneeches quality to how you sound and defend yourselves.
        And unfortunately, along with that comes a blandness, beige, uninteresting aspect that doesn’t in the least seem genuine.

        There is no courage in doing what you do.
        Nor what Matt does.
        Some gay people have been told from youth that their lives are an inevitable parade of sexual promiscuity, which leads to disease, which leads to much social dissatisfaction and personally stunted growth.
        That’s been true also of heterosexuals who are given negative messaging their entire lives.
        It’s only religious communities that are given a pass on the damage they can and have caused.
        So, Matt’s comment that such communities are getting a bad rap, isn’t because they haven’t earned it.
        It’s because they HAVE.
        And the issues of gender and sexual orientation are taking the hardest hits and always have.
        Slut shaming is a full time job there, when it comes to those communities and the gender variant.
        If you had other emotional or psychological issues at play, then THAT isn’t blamed as it would be in a heterosexual, but your orientation is.
        “Falling back into the life style”.
        First of all, it’s NOT a lifestyle. It’s not called that when defining heterosexuality.
        A person is going to be gay or straight, regardless of having an active romantic sex life.
        So actually having one is a sin for one, but not the other?
        Double, impossible, cruel and frankly stupid standards.
        And to what end, what GOOD does being a celibate, neutered gay people actually do, ultimately?
        If you think of something, I’m listening.

      3. There is at least some truth in your rant. You have no qualifications to speak about being gay. Because you are not SSA’d yourself, you have no personal experience of what it means to be SSA’d, to live in a gay lifestyle, or therefore to understand gay brokenness. You are not qualified to speak. So don’t!

      4. Why disqualify the messenger when you’re partly receiving the message? How is that any different that what the Pharisees did to Jesus?

      5. Correction. The messenger is a fraud. She has no qualifications to speak by her own admission. Consequently, her eyes don’t see clearly. She is blind to what really is true about the brokenness of those with SSA and what is best for them.
        But your comment is equally absurd. This woman is NOT Jesus but a false prophet who is no prophet at all and needs to be exposed!

      6. As a SSA man, I don’t see why all that judgment is necessary, lol. I didn’t claim anyone to be Jesus, I was just referring to all the offense that’s taken place, when there’s so much in the message regardless of who the messenger presents themselves to be. That’s all, it’s all love. That’s like saying a whole bunch of heterosexuals just received an amazing word from a pastor, but if later the pastor said they are SSA, that disqualifies everything the received from the word. That’s simply not true. But us SSA have to stick together & find freedom in being who we are, not allowing it to define who we are as well.

      7. There ya go! I want my fellow human beings to be free to be themselves, that’s the only way the truth will be out and free for people to see for themselves and learn for themselves.
        Hiding behind the Bible and God and Christ is only going to prolong false ideas and prejudice.
        That’s why I asked when hiding being gay, or repressing that aspect of sexuality and attraction ever did ANY good?
        Why do Christians act like it’s a formula that’s worked well and did no harm?
        That in and of itself is fraud.

      8. Yessh, Mike. I’m not trying to be a prophet. I’m only someone who has empathized with a marginalized minority because I’m in a minority who has been treated with similar injustice and misrepresentation.
        And the message of Christ was to be empathetic. So I am.
        It pains me to see gay people try to contort themselves into yet another dark box to appease other human beings who refuse to understand what gay identity is.
        The human race is diverse, varied in tremendous ways. And I love that diversity, and I resent religious communities interfering with opportunity to know gay people fully, and with the freedom to be so.
        You made a claim.
        So back up why you say I’m a fraud. I haven’t made a claim of being something I wasn’t.
        Not once.
        I AM qualified to talk about empathy, and courage. And the need for more people to have those qualities in the world.
        And it looks to me like certain types of Christianity, don’t imbue those qualities whatsoever.

      9. “And the message of Christ was to be empathetic. So I am.”
        Telling half truths is fraudulent.
        Yes, I agree Christ was/is an empath. The story of the woman caught in adultery is an example where Christ showed that. He did not judge her for her sin. But Christ did not leave her in her sin but said “go and sin no more”. She would have said how? And the answer was to follow Him and hence Christ had a devoted group of women followers because Christ as well empathized with their bad treatment at the hands of chauvanistic men.
        Now, you empathize BUT unlike Christ you leave them in their gayness. You assume that’s all they need. But Christ empathizes and says “such were some of you” that is Christ offers them freedom from their homosexual pasts.
        Empathy is not enough if you leave them in there misery.

      10. Oh but I AM very qualified to speak. And many, many members of the LGT TRUST me to speak for them.
        Because I know how to defend minorities and women, against the ways in which they are slut shamed or told they aren’t fit to walk the Earth, if they don’t toe some religious authority line.
        I would rather die than betray the trust that’s between me and the LGT folks I’ve come to respect very much.
        I have personal experience with trying to love within a vilified and marginalized community (black men).
        Much of the experience, is the same.
        There is a lot in common.
        And I’ve tapped that empathetic nerve, and it’s been effective so far.
        No one answered the question about what GOOD, especially to other gay folks, is a celibate, neutered gay person who is most likely either fatigued, or bitter about their experience.
        Or both.
        Who isn’t?
        Relationships are difficult.
        And sometimes the predatory Christian community, sense vulnerability, or enables it in gay people and wants you to excise yourself from the very thing that would raise the most passions and challenge to religious belief (if not authority).
        What you call ‘brokenness’ in a gay person IS A MYTH.
        It happens to heterosexuals in which relationship cohesion and endurance is elusive and difficult too.
        But only gay people are required to use their orientation as the excuse.
        Which is exactly the ridiculous double and impossible standards I’m talking about.
        Being gay isn’t being broken.
        It’s part of the wondrous diversity and variation on gender our Creator has gifted us with.
        It’s like the fingers and thumbs working together on the hand.
        Acceptance of homosexuality for what it is, is the HEALTHIEST means of navigating everything else.
        Instead of leaning on it like a crutch to excuse everything else.
        I speak from more experience than you care to believe.
        Deal with it. I’m not a liar.

      11. No. You are not qualified. Just like I am not qualified to speak about Black people because I am not Black! Moreover, you were asked by Matt to lay off this blog. Be respectful of Matt and show some class.

      12. As a gay man I say Regan is right on point. Self loathing gay men who fall victim to religion are just sad. It is very cult like.

      13. Tim, one of us is in a cult :). We both can’t be right therefore one of us is wrong! But, it’s still a free society isn’t it? So, if your into gay and happy. Then be happy. I’m very happy where I am. So, we are both happy :). Nothing sad. Let’s drink to that! And btw, I don’t hate myself nor do I consider myself a victim. It’s Regan that is unhappy and that’s sad :(.

      14. It is funny and ironic you are projecting on Regan. She hasn’t said anything that makes me feel she is said. Just pissed off at homophobia both externally in the world and internally in people like yourself that has been taught that something is wrong with them. That is the sad part taught to hate and loathe a part of yourself. To be taught you will never have that one special person in your life. Truly sad.

      15. You want to know what is sad and disgusting. That people like Regan think they can bully their way into a blog like this. They have been told to lay off by the owner of this blog. They know they are not welcome with their views. They can’t respect others views in this still free society. They think they can just arrive and dump their rant which is not only unwelcome but their behavior is arrogant and sick. It shows how degraded is their moral compass. What is ironic is they think they are compassionate and righteous in their actions. How far from the truth! Now that is sad and pathetic. Who gave Regan the right to bully me and tell me how to live?

      16. You are promoting an ideology that is harmful to the GLBT community. Guess what when you publish a blog that promotes harmful things you need to be ready to have people challenge it. You don’t get a free pass to promote harm then whine when someone says nope this is wrong.

      17. I don’t care if I “harm” the LGBT community. It promotes an ideology that is contrary to furthering my Father’s Kingdom. This is all temporary. God is eternal. If some gets offended by me “promoting” it, then let them go to a safe space.

      18. Yes heaven forbid a gay kid kills himself because of those like you that work to shame them and tell them they aren’t worthy of romantic love. No skin off your nose.

      19. I’m not responding to the angry activist (I guess a snarky comment about her needing Xanax counts though) but I suppose you are okay – for now.
        The goal is to get them to love themselves, to try to prevent suicide. Despite the propaganda of the LGBT movement, there is Christian love for those who are SSA. But there are standards. One does not tell a kleptomaniac that it is okay to steal because God loves them, nor does one tell an adulterer that it is okay to sleep around because God loves them (well maybe Ms. Activist). Why should there be a separate standard for those who are SSA? Is it because it might make them uncomfortable or is it to further the political power and pride of those who say they are for us?
        Again I question Ms. Activist motives. Does she really care about a person’s well being as she claims, or does she want dependence on a political organization so she can take pride in it?

      20. When the gay community eventually get what they want: all of us in jail, the church underground, and the elimination of gender then they won’t need Ms. activist! They will discard her like their trash because she isn’t one of them. She’ll see the light then. She’ll repent of her evil. There is hope — always hope.

      21. Awwww the homophobes are scared. Don’t worry just like racists you will still be able to hold your backwards hatred. You will just be marginalized. By the way mike and Bradley you sound very little like the Jesus you claim to follow.

      22. Much like the Civil Rights Movement, and it’s moral center, the gay community launched a remarkable revolution that’s been essentially peaceful, courageous, compassionate and ALL through DUE PROCESS OF LAW.
        Even if one of their number has been brutalized, they haven’t responded in kind. There were Christians who went to jail, or lost their church communities and pastors who were fired for SUPPORTING gay equality and marrying gay couples.
        Thousands of gay people participated in the civil rights movement, and one of Dr. King’s own associates who was instrumental in organizing the march on Washington was a gay man. Bayard Rustin.
        Many of the civil rights warriors, were undeniably supportive and still are, of gay equality.
        Coretta King, Rep. John Lewis, Andrew Young, Julian Bond..Mrs. Mildred Loving.
        No doubt they knew the gay folks who marched alongside them.
        Due process of law.
        The goal of gay folks, is to be treated with the same protections the Bill of Rights and Constitution guarantees. That’s all.
        I’ve been discarded and dismissed like trash, usually by CHRISTIANS.
        For defending gay and trans folks.
        I can take it. My skin is very thick.
        I’ve noticed that many Christians like you are about as durable as a snowflake.
        Your predictions, like those of so many like you who think they know what the gay community will do or wants, has been very wrong.

      23. I see Matt continues to allow your posts and you continue to do so despite previously being asked to desist.
        You think you know gay brokenness because you have talked to gay people. But you only know what they tell you and feed you. Hearsay is not always accurate. You don’t personally know what it means to have gay attractions or to have been involved in gay behaviour. Moreover you equate being black to being gay as if it is the same thing. I do not agree and you need to respect that.
        I’m in Canada. Gay folks here have attained what they wanted: respect in the workplace, legal gay marriage with equal rights, and changes to school curriculums. But, they continue to parade with in your face sexuality! Why? Clearly, they want more. Why more? Because they are just not happy with what they have achieved. There is further agenda. Unlike the Black community who no longer hold protest parades here the gays continue. Why?
        What is the real reason? If you have same sex attraction you would not have to speculate. You would know that gay behaviour does not lead to happiness. Gays think they aren’t happy or content because of some external ‘homophobia’ from people like me! They don’t want to believe like you that the real reason is not that. They think that if they eliminate ALL perceived ‘homophobia’, eliminate people like me, eliminate all gender speak and create a gay planet where we all are gender-less and switch back and forth then they will be happy! I predict they will achieve that since they are a powerful well funded lobby and have people like you working aggressively but naively for that cause. But I also predict Ragen that when they achieve that they will still be unhappy. And in their unhappiness they will turn on you for the only reason that you are not one of them. Call me a nut Ragen but time will tell.

      24. It’s not about what gay people ‘feed me’. I know and have borne witness to how gay people ARE TREATED.
        THAT has been my greatest concern all along.
        I know that bigotry, being MISREPRESENTED by a public hostile to you, and distrustful, leads to unhappiness.
        Black people DO have protests. Haven’t you seen the responses to the heightened visuals that show black men being gunned down by police officers, even if they have their hands up in surrender?!
        It’s likely going to be impossible to remove all bigotry from society. But certainly removing it from PUBLIC POLICY is necessary and warranted. No civil law should allow it.
        And it’s civil law that should be colorblind, and genderless, even though our humanity ISN’T and can’t be.
        Everything you’re describing about gay people and their intentions and ‘brokenness’ only feeds prejudice and distrust.
        And always has.
        Matt’s articles, if they only generated comments from people who agree with him, and stroke him only with the same high praise over and over again, would get kind of boring after a while.
        Why shouldn’t I come here to shake things up a bit? Most of all, cutting off dissent would be censoring, and denying that dissent is legit.
        And it would be a rather weak thing to do to cut off dissent and would only prove that Christians can only deal with people who agree with them and obey them.

      25. What is bigotry? My dictionary defines it as: intolerance toward those who hold different opinions from oneself.
        So, with that definition I find you Regan a bigot. Yes, you can disagree. But you don’t! You vilify with your poisonous rants people who understand something you don’t have.
        Talking all over them with your own little opinions. Yes, your opinions are little just like mine are. But if you want to talk about what is legit then talk plainly and truthfully: you are bigoted toward people like Matt, myself and others. If it quacks like a duck it is a duck and I’m telling you I feel mistreated by you because you won’t accept my color!

      26. And by the way, heterosexuals have ALWAYS attained the freedom to marry who they please, and flaunt THEIR sexuality in all kinds of public bacchanals, but again the DOUBLE standards of what defines open sexuality for gay folks and for heterosexuals is always two very different things.
        Such as anyone taking homicidal offense if two men or two women are affectionate in public.
        The irony that violence is more acceptable and even entertainment in general society, rather than affection between ss couples, clearly escapes you.
        So I don’t give much credence to anyone who complains about what gay people display in public.

      27. Wow Regan can you not stick to the topic? I’m talking about gay parades. There are not straight sexuality parades! No straight ‘pride’ parades. That’s the double standard I’m talking about. I don’t give much credence to a poster or activist who can’t stick to the topic.

      28. Gay Pride parades and festivals are not protests but a celebration. Much like the Irish festivals, Italian Festivals, Latino Festivals etc we have in our fine city.

      29. Thank you, exactly my point. You should see the fashions at the Afro Punk Fest in Brooklyn, for example.
        Mardi Gras is precisely the bacchanal I’m talking about. I AM trying to stick to the topic, you’re the one that goes off on the rails because you can’t understand the comments.

      30. Comparing the behaviors of stealing and adultery to being gay, is an exact example of not differentiating behaviors that cause harm and distrust and behaviors that do not (homosexuality).
        I said I worked in law enforcement, first responders know human depravity very well.
        And adultery and theft, are acts AGAINST another human being. A betrayal of their trust.
        THAT is why there needs to be a separate standard, because the RESULT is NOT the same.
        My motives are to see an END to the prejudice, and suspicion and threat to gay people in which even casual contact can become a homicide.
        I’m not making CLAIMS.
        I’m talking REAL. I would love it if anti hate and discrimination groups didn’t have to exist. But they DO for a very specific reason. And the fact that you’d slam any of them is disgraceful.
        I worked in law enforcement for the same reason.
        That you would take issue and make a crack that my motives are nefarious is just so rich, coming from someone like you.
        There are different sites that I go to, that I have to check in on, to be INFORMED. So that when I lodge a comment, it’s a well informed one.
        Years ago, I’d read about a site called ruralgay, in my hometown newspaper (Los Angeles Times).
        I told everyone there, that I wasn’t gay, nor rural. But that a politically active person like me, needed to check in on the local politics, how the people in the chat room were doing, and their fears and needs.
        The site was up for six years, and I made several LIFELONG friends from it.
        So, I’m here to see what ELSE Matt is talking about. He’s articulate, quite sophist.
        But his articles all point in the same direction, with an intent he thinks is going to smooth things more between gay people and the religious or the public at large.
        It won’t. He’s reinforcing more stereotype, more unrealistic expectations of gay people.
        So, I won’t know anything about Matt, unless I read his blog regularly.

      31. So you admit you are a troll! An angry, bitter, two faced troll, who wants me to abandon God and give my support to the LGBT (isn’t there a Q somewhere now, I can’t keep up). Well you can’t have me, and I have warned others about you who post here. Rant all you want. Consider Xanax. God loves you. Good night.

      32. You’re only proving how abusive an avowed Christian will get, when challenged. I bring up an experience with a site that gave me lifelong friends, and you act as if you uncovered a major crime.
        So what if I visit websites for connection, research and edification.
        So. What.
        Do you Christians have to make up such a persecution complex so badly that you accuse anyone or turn a casual mention, into a screed about trolling to do so.
        I thought you weren’t going to reply to me any more.
        You insult me, then you tell me God loves you, then you tell me you love me and will be my friend, if I let you.
        You called me two faced. But this last comment could give someone whiplash you flipped so fast from one thing to the other.
        Why would I want to be your friend after that, since you’re intimating I can’t be trusted?
        Initially, I was willing to examine the story you told about experience a church family member of yours, checking your casual gesture of affection, as having some other motive.
        As if such a simple act, a well meaning one, means something else when a gay person does it.
        I thought to myself, how hurtful, and tension inducing in a gay person, who has to behave that way.
        Don’t make a claim of what I want, be wrong, and then don’t OWN it.
        I said early on, that despite the betrayals of people closest to me, I don’t hate or try to get back at the members of the group responsible for it.
        Bitter, angry people don’t do that.
        I act on behalf of those who shared my experience to work to change the laws, and social awareness about it.
        I don’t need a church, or contradictory religious person to tell me about God.
        You don’t have to abandon God, to support gay people where it matters.
        But don’t act like what you do has been a part of the advancement of gay people. You don’t want them to advance.
        And regardless, those advancements were necessary, and made a better world and country for gay people.
        Contradicting what YOU say and do to the faces of gay people.
        So your assertion of me being two faced, is YOU projecting yourself on me.
        I don’t try to change gay people into gospel repeating automatons, that wouldn’t or couldn’t challenge religious authority over the lives of their brethren everywhere, whether they chose the religion or not.
        I don’t try to tell them God loves them in one breath, and that they are sinners unworthy of equal treatment under the law, in another.

        Matt and yourself and the typical visitor to this blog, say the same thing, profess to do the same thing, and behave as if it’s been a working thing to do, for the gay community.
        You’re not doing a thing new, that hasn’t been done and expected of gay people for the last 45 years.
        And your cheap crack about considering Xanax…?
        As I said, you’ve proven how abusive a Christian will get, and will turn on a person in a heartbeat if you’re not praised every two seconds.
        Bradley, we’re done.
        We were done, before I said a thing.

      33. There it is.
        Bradley finally said what I knew all along.
        “I don’t care if I harm the LGBT community”.

        I did remind you that furthering the Christian agenda was all you cared about.
        Being gay isn’t an ideology.
        And anyone calling it “brokenness” is insulting gay people.
        The Christian doctrine towards gay people at it’s heart, is cruel and ruthless and destructive.
        It’s only very recently some Christians have admitted that, and even apologized for it.
        At least they owned it.
        And I own that seeing injustice and the kinds of insults that say that gay people are unworthy, unless they toe the hypocritical and contradictory religious line, makes me angry.
        The suicides and religious bullying of gay kids pisses me off ROYALLY.
        Because I’ve mentored youth, and tried very hard to undo that damage. In the individual, and society at large.
        The total blindness and deafness some of the religious are to the destruction they’ve caused is unforgivable.
        God and Christ are still intangible.
        Gay people, are not. And I know there is so much more there that I and others deserve to know, that the religious keep trying to repress.
        I KNOW all about being Christian, and the aim of Christians.
        I was THERE for that MY WHOLE LIFE.
        I don’t want to hear from you anymore, I want to know the REAL gay people who should be unsullied by doctrine that’s interfering with getting to know each other better.
        THAT is the knowledge I want to know.
        So don’t try to keep it from me or anyone else who wants to know, AND SHOULD.

      34. You’re feeling bullied? Really?
        I didn’t even know you existed until you went on the offensive. If you can’t stand the heat, don’t start the fire.
        Tell me what’s so degraded about my moral compass. No doubt you want to tell me, right?
        Again, you rang the bell, now deal with the consequences.
        The drama queen act in here is predictably tiresome.
        I tend to try to give everyone another shot at actually being intellectually honest.
        But, I guess that’s an impossibility.

      35. Oh, so you know that about me, then? What are you all of a sudden?
        Don’t put words I didn’t say, and don’t assume (that’s what makes you keep making the same mistakes over and over).
        A I can speak for myself.
        Better minds understand me. So if you can’t, that’s not my problem, it’s yours.

      36. Regan, Regan it is you who assume. Where did you get this “sexual orientation” idea from? What is it? How many are there? Who decides? Who’s right? You assume that there more than one. Who told you?
        Look, the ordinary man on the street without any education or reading of this blog will tell you that two males don’t have the anatomy to have sex. To put it bluntly the rectum was designed for only one purpose and it was not sex!
        So, you think that if you created a gay planet without people like me then all would be well? Maybe internalized homophobia is simply that gay behavior is inherently against the grain and doesn’t work and is not fulfilling. How can it be? The parts don’t fit!

      37. Of course, you’re going to reduce this to ‘the parts don’t fit’. That doesn’t seem to matter with men and women’s mouths.
        The ordinary man in the street without any education, and KNOWS he is without education and is a decent person, will not argue with those who clearly are better thinkers and educated than he is.
        His decency will help him recognize when he doesn’t know anything about a certain subject, but his courage and compassion will allow him to ASK in order to BE more informed.
        You’ve reduced gay people to the sex act, without regard to that attraction would still be there without a sex life in evidence.
        A heterosexual is still their orientation, regardless of having a sex life.
        Human behavior isn’t simple. And human beings aren’t either.
        There are a lot of things that on the surface, or even a bit below it, are mysterious and not easy to understand.
        Doesn’t mean they aren’t legit. And complexity, is over your head, as your comment attests by itself.
        Who decided that gay people were unworthy of being treated like human beings with the potential to do good?
        Those that decided that, created a world of hurt for millions.
        The ones who have been accepting, did not.
        THAT is how you can discern what’s right or not.
        The results.
        They’ve spoken for themselves when the opportunity has been accorded.
        Got all that?

      38. You didn’t answer any of my questions Regan. You need to think about them and respond or else this isn’t a conversation but you preaching at me.

      39. I answered your questions, I also gave the clinical and precise definitions of not only of sexual orientation, but it’s origin and in context to clinical studies.
        I pointed out to Bradley that what I believe about God, is between me and God, and is private and special.
        At no time, did I EVER dismiss the God that created me.
        Nor gay people. The same God created us both.
        What “studied people” are you talking about that proved that decades of research was nothing?
        I know exactly what happened in ’73, with the medical and psychiatric establishment, Dr. Evelyn Hooker pioneered a different methodology and case subjects.

        After considering her research, other doctors followed the same methods and that eventually led to the DSM changing the definition.
        I already told you that all doctors are required to update their research, and case subjects. They are morally and ethically obligated to do so.
        When they don’t, why would you go to a doctor that didn’t think anything SHOULD change, in 2,000 years?
        So it’s your constant referring to the Bible, as if it’s the answer for the complexities of a clinical subject, is what makes no sense in that context.
        Since so many contributors here are gay, would you prefer they were locked up, and subjected to cold showers, electro shock, and the same constant messaging that would keep them imprisoned in mental institutions for years and years, damaging their ability to work and be self reliant.
        I didn’t dismiss anything, I just didn’t happen to mention it.
        And you’re making declarations and assertions about what God do worship or made up for myself.
        With NO evidence anywhere on this thread that I ever did that.

        Another irrefutable example of you putting things in I didn’t say, or shouldn’t have to.
        You scolded me and said you wanted a conversation, and no preaching from me.
        I tried, but instead, you wanted to be the one to preach.
        So you contradicted yourself.
        AnotherMike and Joshua and I were the ones having a conversation, use that example as what one is really like.
        The Bible has been around a long time. I’ve read it before, many times and I have a good memory.
        I own one. It’s a little worn, but I got it when I was confirmed in the Episcopalian church.
        There are so many other books I need to read. Telling me to read the Bible, or that I have to believe in God the same way you do, is something I’ve heard all my life, and have no need to keep hearing it constantly.
        It’s being done to the point of a saturation, I don’t think enough Christians ever considered.
        Beating someone over the head, with the fire and brimstone bit, is going to not necessarily turn people away from God, but away FROM YOU.
        There is NOTHING new in the Bible. But people are learning to understand each other in remarkable and essential ways, and I find the rhetoric here, acting like a restraining chain on one’s better angels of curiosity, and respect for separate and diversified experience.
        Equal treatment under the law, and protections therein, that keeps one from one human abusing another, is a result I have faith in, because it’s worked well so far.
        And there is nothing wrong with it, and others here should appreciate.
        Because as I said, they wouldn’t be free to express themselves in any way whatsoever. Even their religion, because sometimes, religious fervor is integrated with mental illness.

        You were answered with a lot more respect, than you gave.
        And it took so little to set you off, with some serious invective that was uncalled for.
        If it will put your mind at ease, I actually love God, although the faith has been tested. And I love enjoying all the tremendous opportunity I’ve had to know so many different people and their backgrounds.
        I know who to thank for that too.
        I like NEW information, and new opportunity to explore it.
        The Bible isn’t one of them, because I’ve been there and done that already.
        So lighten up.

      40. Regan you have been at this so long it hard for you to see what is happening to you. You rationalize even your standing before God that somehow it’s “private” and “special” that no one else can understand? That is not what followers of Jesus do. To love God is to obey Him. That’s what love is. It’s in the context of a relationship that God cultivates with us for ALL to see. You discount the teachings of the Bible yet you say you love God. Read John 14:15-24 and see what loving God means?
        Moreover regarding the APA’s decision regarding homosexuality. It was not due to some groundbreaking new empirical research. If that was true the vote should have been unanimous! Instead only 55% voted for that change. So, you don’t know “exactly” what happened in 1974 when that change officially took place. It is shocking to me how that change occurred and it should be shocking to the whole scientific community!
        No Regan, from what you write you love psychology when it suits your purpose. Don’t talk about loving God. Tell the truth.

      41. Evidently mike, you don’t respect or care about what relationship I actually have. Because I didn’t mention it before, you decided all on your own, that I dismissed God.
        The problem here is that, you’re using your identity as a Christian, as a someone claiming to be a lover of God, to qualify yourself and other people, with no regard to any personal history or experience I’ve had.
        You’re belaboring a point, that doesn’t need it.
        And when a conversation requires more than just the constant refrain about your beliefs, God and Christ and virtually NOTHING else, except that you expect utter agreement or praise…then you say something to infer that the science that I know, is worthy of not being believed.
        Or that I love psychology when or because it suits my purpose.
        Your double standards on this, are showing.
        Because that’s how you use your Christian beliefs, to your own purpose.
        Except that said Christian teaching and doctrine has had many centuries, and the other has not.
        And when someone gets offended by the length of my posts (then it’s not going to help to try and put EVERY fact, or thought into a comment, now is it?).
        The thing is mike, God and Christ don’t hold you or any other Christian accountable for what you do. Not in the clear and present physical sense.
        Any punishment, shunning, exclusion, restrictions or enforcement (i.e. OBEDIENCE), is demanded and carried out my mere mortals like yourself.
        I’m only mortal too.
        And I’ve seen considerable disparity in the way women are supposed to obey, as opposed to what happens if men do or don’t obey.
        The God of the Bible doesn’t suit a considerably large part of the human population in the way you’d like to think. Or force it, if you could.
        I just said, other than being murdered outright, gay people were otherwise locked up and tormented with treatments that aren’t and couldn’t change what they are.
        And no mental illness (if anyone is still going to call homosexuality that), is cured or tempered in a healthy way by prayer or harsh restrictions that aren’t imposed consistently on heterosexuals for THEIR less than perfect adherence to religious doctrine.
        It’s a long way from 1973-74.
        And I told you that much more empirical research has proven that gay people aren’t broken, or sick, or emotionally incompetent. Or incompetent at all SINCE the earlier research.
        This was part of the evidence, proof and witnesses who participated in the legislative and courts and why the laws changed and HAD to.
        You seem to be very hostile, to these changes.
        And you keep making the claim that the changes in the DSM or how anyone studied homosexuality 40 years ago, wasn’t legit, or came under duress.
        So your preference is for gay people to be locked up?
        To be kept from pursuing life, liberty and happiness without the stigma?
        Looks to me like Christians want to continue to PROFIT from the stigma.
        So I won’t talk about loving God.
        Why bother if you don’t believe me anyway?

        The greatest epiphany I ever had about my fellow man, was being in a crowd of MILLIONS who turned out to watch the space shuttle Endeavor make a slow journey (over nearly two days) down to major Los Angeles streets.
        I’d never seen a more joyful, respectful crowd of the diversity that we humans represent.
        And all there to see what human collective ingenuity, cooperation, courage, compassion and love for human progress could do.
        It was a time when I loved God a great deal, actually. And was grateful to see so many people be awestruck.
        A modern Tower of Babel, so to speak.
        I’ve always told the truth here.
        And you’re in no position to call me a liar.
        You just say whatever you want, whether it’s true on not, you don’t care.
        But because you are behind the anonymous safety of a computer, and not to my face, you can try and stir up a mob scene here to point a finger that I don’t love God enough to suit YOU.
        You’re mind is stuck, and stuck like epoxy to a single, narrow and very small thing.
        I’ve been more places than you dare to go.
        No matter how many times you scold me, or demand I read the Bible, I know it already. Don’t need to read it, every time you tell me to.
        Might be refreshing if Christians stopped talking to adults and ordering them around as if they are dealing with willful children.
        What I want to see happen, is that men like Bradley aren’t suddenly suspected as if they are a criminal, for a casual, well meant affectionate gesture towards another man.
        But since YOU are just as suspicious, I’m guessing you prefer to be suspicious all the time, and make accusations and decide on the guilt of someone’s lack of piety (in your estimation).
        It’s shocking to you how that change occurred? As long as you believe it happened completely the way you claim.
        But I think you like shock, and the drama of what you want to believe and that might explain why you make extreme claims, to give them heft, while it hasn’t occurred to you that I know more than you give me credit for.
        It shouldn’t be necessary to write so much context in this forum.

        But, since I HAVE been at a lot of things for a long time, you didn’t even ask my cultural origins. You never really asked anything about me that’s personal.
        But you sure went for attacking me personally, when I did no such thing to you.
        YOU got that started.
        And enjoyed doing it, too. When a person isn’t ‘obeying God’ to your satisfaction (how you expect to know that when this is an online forum), shouldn’t matter.
        But you try to humiliate in the course of that kind of thinking.

        Us black folks tended to be invisible to the white majority. As if we were these silent, non emoting shadows. But there are times when white people NEVER ASK about a black person, let alone care to know if they felt anything or had an opinion.
        And also get spoken to (me included) as if we’re children that need to OBEY white people.
        And if we dare to challenge the authority white people thought was theirs alone, then comes the humiliation and sometimes outright violence.
        Those are the earmarks of an abusive relationship.
        And I know much about those too.
        In some Christians, there is that quality, and then they say “it’s God’s law, not mine, I didn’t make them up”.
        Leaving God to take the blame for the abusive nature of what Christians expect from others.
        Not all Christians of course.
        I know much better Christians than that.
        But you never asked except questions from which to launch into a sermon.
        I’ve heard all the sermons.
        I’d really like to hear something else.

      42. If I didn’t care about you Regan I wouldn’t be talking to you. If you dismiss the Bible you dismiss God. If you can’t understand that statement then you are in trouble. Did you read those verses in John? Now don’t go making this conversation into a racial thing. Because it is not.It is whether you follow the Bible or your psychology research that you quote.Can you at least think about that and answer it. But don’t go telling me it’s “private”! Because then there is no discussion.

      43. mike, would you lighten up? How many times reading the Bible will satisfy?
        It’s been around a long time. It’s not saying anything differently to me, than it did when I first attended Bible study as a seven year old (and very precocious reader).
        It’s not new. It’s something that will have staying power long after you and I are dust.
        Did you not just read what I said I felt, when I saw so many of our fellow humans gathering for a momentous event?
        I don’t have to keep thinking about the Bible. I’ve done that. Many times before, after a while, other things have to be thought about.
        New discoveries have to be made. New things to talk about, new approaches to problems the older ways haven’t solved.
        Such as why gay and trans people raise such conflict, when there isn’t any difference that requires to be cautious around a gay person, when they ARE accorded the same that heterosexuals take for granted.
        You didn’t answer my question to the ethical aspect of resentment that the mental illness definition was changed.
        Do you prefer gay people to be murdered, or locked up?
        Because those have been the only options up until now.

        You don’t believe there is such a thing as sexual orientation, you have already said as much.
        So why don’t the talents and potential to contribute, mean nothing, but focus on the sexuality of gay people is at the expense of ALL else?
        You keep asserting I’m dismissing God, you use that word a lot.
        All the while, you’re the one who is dismissive.
        You have NO respect for the fact that I’m more curious to know more about gay people, and have acted accordingly in the manner in which to gain this knowledge.
        The Bible didn’t help me before, it won’t now.
        Because the constant referral to the Bible, that if you knew anything about medical history, political structure and the Roman Empire for example, you’d understand the context in which NOW, the present…requires more than just reactionary attitudes, exemplified in the Bible.

        I only presented a racial example, in order for you to understand that all kinds of people have been abused by religious certainty that a group was offensive to God.
        A GROUP, not individuals.

        I’ve heard all kinds (if not every kind), of Biblical excuse (if not reason) to abuse people whose existence wasn’t easily explained in Biblical times (among other things), but is still called a lie, even when it IS explained.
        I dunno mike.
        Some of these thoughts and experience, I had questions about since I was a child. Made aware of and experiencing deep realities, from young.
        Losing both of my parents to death, by the time I was 15 years old.
        Having friends coming out to me, at about that time.
        Being assaulted and sexually objectified once my body developed. Slut shamed by a Christian neighbor I’d loved since I was a child, for joining a family entertainment company as a performer.
        She MEANT to hurt me, and she did.
        Why did my black skin get me into trouble, when I was innocent?
        Same thing I saw with gay people, being treated horribly, no matter how innocent.
        And now, you expect me to defend whether or not I show the kind of piety you think is required to be considered fairly at all?

        I’ve had to work through things that are in conflict with what people TOLD me.
        That even contradicted their Biblical assertions.
        And I’ve so far, found that there was a lot of wrong in what I was told.
        The Bible isn’t enough, mike.
        Not enough.
        And the rather weak gestures of saying I was cared for, after some very insulting disrespect for me, and for my experience…aren’t either.
        More needs to be done.
        But I find most people here hard pressed to extend themselves that far.

      44. Regan, that you were hurt by people, by religion is evident. I see alot of hurt in you. Where will you find healing? In being an activist to people who are not your own. Have you found healing there? Maybe community with others who have been hurt. But that is not enough. I sense your pain is still deep.
        I hate religion and churches who pretend but are hypocrites and help no one but themselves. Stay away from those people and places.
        No. No, I’m not against gay people. I don’t want them locked up or hurt anymore. But I hate a solution for them that hurts them even more. Matt was there but he is not now. He has found healing. That is evident. That’s what I want for gay people.
        Yes, you’ve been hurt. So have I. But you hating me because I say the solution to pain and hurt is in the Bible. My precious invective was not against you personally but against your ideology that being gay is good. It is not. It is a counterfeit thing which does not bring fulfillment no matter what laws are in place.
        I am against religion and if you remember Jesus was too. He called the religious white washed tombs because they were hypocrites.
        But the Bible speaks of relationship with God restored by Jesus. He said I came for the sick because the healthy don’t need a physician.
        You and me Regan are sick and hurting because of religion and people who have been mean. You and I need to forgive them and move on.
        I do care about my gay brothers and sisters. But the Bible is enough Regan. It is the only truth that offers a way out of pain and bitterness. Not psychology. No.
        I care that you find healing, an end to bitterness, and that you can forgive those who have hurt you and who have hurt gay people.
        There is no healing outside the God of the bible. Do reread John 14. Have you read it recently?

      45. I mentioned before, that despite all the things that have happened, I have NO ill will towards the ALL the members of the GROUP they belong to.
        I can compartmentalize very efficiently.
        A necessary quality when you’re in a big city, crime scene photo unit.
        I mostly see people as individuals, and place them in the correct categories if necessary.
        The problem is, that there isn’t a way to see people like that coming from a mile away or avoiding them. Some of this happened between me and people I loved and cared about for YEARS.
        That’s the only thing that made the betrayal so profound and destructive.
        Those that have no personal connection to me that much, don’t and can’t affect me.
        But being motivated and strong and able to keep moving, I have found through working at something in the service of other people, or the community I live in.
        That’s what anti hate activism and education is all about.
        That is what reaching out to different people with NO ulterior motive to make them follow the same line, and obey the same God, is all about.
        I told you, I know the Bible, I know what it says.
        I”m very well versed in much philosophy, and the patterns of thought through the centuries.
        I read a lot.
        There IS healing outside of God and the Bible.
        There always has been.
        I should be able to take a different path, as long as I get to a good place where PROGRESS is made, and people aren’t stuck in the same old line, and trying to tell people there is only a single line to follow.
        There isn’t.
        For instance, you can take a Catholic like Kahlil Gibran, and read The Prophet, and he’s filtered some of the Christian and other faiths down to mesmerizing and beautiful writing.
        Or you can read Goethe or Robert Fuhlgum, and get similarities, but Fuhlgum is more entertaining and relatable.

        When all your paths all lead to ONE book and ONE God and ONE prophet, it’s not as engaging as you like to think it is.
        I need more. And I usually get it, the more people I see, the more diversity and variation I accept.
        That most people want the same things, and what’s concerns me, is why gay people are singled out, and confronted with the double standard they MUST do everything the same as everyone else.
        When they aren’t the same, and won’t be. And shouldn’t be.
        Thumb to the fingers, mike. Left hand with the right.
        We are beautiful in our difference. God, likes flavors and spice, and colors and changes.
        As I said, Christians have gamed a lot of time on this, and made a mess and refuse to own the mistakes when it comes to certain members of the human family.
        It’s not that the Christian’s time is over.
        It’s that it’s someone else’s turn.

      46. “There IS healing outside of God and the Bible.”
        You can search for it. But you yourself Regan haven’t found it. I don’t see it in you. I see it in Matt, but not in you. You owe yourself more. But there is still time to find healing for yourself Regan. May you find it one day. But all roads don’t lead home. But this is true that you’ll find God on every one of those roads seeking relationship with you and inviting you to follow Him unto the only road that leads home. There is only one road home… Please do read John 14 again.

      47. Mike, you didn’t see me at ALL, in the beginning. And if you don’t see it in me, it’s because there isn’t a single way to heal. Any more than there are single ‘slings and arrows’ so to speak in life itself.
        You really don’t need to keep telling me the same thing over and over. I spent the morning with a good friend’s two children.
        Three year old girl, and her 5 mo old brother. They are a Jewish family, and we were discussing getting to temple for Rosh Hashanah, and what other Jewish activity I might participate in with them.
        The little girl and I had a great time together. I’m teaching her how to dance, and catch and throw a ball.
        Her baby brother likes being talked to, his mother has a beautiful singing voice. Actually, I sing too.
        But THERE is where God is.
        In the meditation I employ when I’m drawing and painting, I specialize in portraiture, which has been extended into forensic art.
        God is in the faces I see for what they are, a work of art.
        I love music, and God is in the voice of Lawrence Brownlee (one of the best tenors that ever lived), or Ella Fitzgerald singing the Gershwin songbook.
        God is in the statue of David or the Pieta, God is in the magnificent Chinese magnolias that bloom here in Los Angeles.
        I’m pretty sure God is in the hideous Jerusalem crickets or Asian hornets that should scare the piss out of anyone (and that’s when I’m like why God, WHY?!)
        And God is in the dawn I enjoy when I’m working out in the mornings.
        And I told you where God was, when so many millions of people turned out to see a space traveling chariot that visited the heavens God built.
        Don’t you worry about a thing.
        I’ve got this.

      48. At least you’re not yelling at me anymore. I guess you’ve decided I’m harmless!
        Yes, those are good examples. But are they not just the fingerprints of God. He’s really not in the statue. He created the people and gave them gifts to paint, sculpture and dance! But where is God? Where does He live? Have you found Him and heard His voice?
        Good, you like singing. Here is a favorite song about where to find God.

        One day a young girl sat upon Daddy’s knee
        If you could be God, Daddy, where would you be
        In a cloud? In a church? Or a boat on the sea?
        Or maybe a sycamore tree?
        Do you think you would live in a tree?

        White clouds would be fine but they never leave heaven
        and churches are empty six days out of seven
        there’s not much to do when a boat on the sea
        and I don’t think I’d live in a tree, my child
        I don’t think I’d live in a tree

        Then where does God live? Daddy where does he go?
        I do want to find him, I do want to know
        I’ve looked for him here and I’ve looked for him there
        and I’ve looked just about everywhere, now
        I’ve looked just about everywhere

        Then listen my child, and the truth I will tell
        come out with your Daddy, come out to the well
        look deep in the water, now what do you see?
        Daddy, I only see me, she cried
        Why Daddy, I only see me

        My child you may travel the sea or the sod
        and find many things but you’ll never find God
        but if you will search with a heart that is true
        you will find he is living in you, my child
        you’ll find he is living in you

        Bonnie Casey

      49. Sweet.
        I like the poem about Kublai Khan,
        Has a very similar outcome, except that KK met an angel as he woke from ‘a great dream of peace’.
        I used to know that poem by heart. I have so many rolling around in there, that a few would take a bit of concentration to recall.
        Anyway, I’m concerned about a GROUP of people who haven’t had their chance to be seen and heard, and living out in such a way that people accepting them is routine, but also no more potential to do great things is lost.
        This is a group that’s being isolated and treated differently than any of the other people in this world considered sinners.
        I don’t especially like being called a sinner, out of hand, because a religion considers everyone a sinner from the outset.
        That seems to contradict that goodness and God is in each of us.
        I volunteer alongside believers and agnostics and people who are outright atheist, in an institution I’m very proud of here in Los Angeles.
        The Simon Weisenthal Center.
        He was a Nazi hunter, who’d lost 90 members of his family in the Holocaust.
        The mix of people who are committed to teaching against any form of prejudice and resistance to open mindedness, is tremendous.
        We’re all different, but our purpose is the same. It has nothing to do with whose religion is right, or whether someone is religious at all.
        I know what I want, mike.
        I was told a very interesting story about my heritage when I was touring with a show. One of the other performers told me about HIS religion and the many generations of priesthood that were in his family.
        I’ve already fulfilled the destiny of THAT remarkable story, and didn’t think I would.
        But people with children tend to love the story. And I’ll tell it to you sometimes if you want.
        For now, I’m totally wiped. I have a crazy schedule that just started and I haven’t adjusted yet.
        Talk to you later.

      50. “I don’t especially like being called a sinner, out of hand, because a religion considers everyone a sinner from the outset.
        That seems to contradict that goodness and God is in each of us.”

        That is an honest reply Regan. No one likes being called a sinner. Permit me to expand.
        But if you’ve observed any two year old. No one has to teach that one how to sin. It’s a period called the ‘terrible twos’ for a reason not just a negative way of talking. We are born genetically able to do what is not good. The two year gets angry and hits her brother. No one taught him that. It’s innate.
        The bible says we are made in the image and likeness of God. But this image has been crippled by bad genetics we inherited when things went bad with our first parents who disobeyed God by their own free will. Sin always has consequence and for Adam & Eve it was banishment plus the curse that affected our DNA as well as all creation.
        Originally, God was with us as described in Genesis when He walked in the garden. You can ask your Jewish friends about that. After the fall God’s presence left.
        Today, God is back living in those who desire a personal relationship with Him. That’s why I wondered if you might read John 14. It speaks that if we love God then the Trinity will come and live inside of us. How wonderful is that. For me, it made all the difference. For a long time I thought I was junk but the God of the universe would not come and live in junk but in people who are very valuable to Him. Having God live in me has completely changed many things. I can hold my head high because of that and no human laws could ever accomplish that confidence in me!
        So, I’m getting an inkling of your quest and mission to help minorities. But Regan not all minorities are the same. Surely the boy lovers being a minority should not be championed by anybody despite their protest that boys of nine can decide to love whomever they want. But this is also my issue with homosexuals. Theirs and my same sex attractions don’t benefit from acting them out. Since becoming a follower of Jesus my eyes have been opened to that truth. I am not brainwashed, nor do I have what others say of me that I have internalized homophobia. Having a relationship with Jesus has revealed to me how same sex pursuit is injurious to me and in fact that behavior keeps me hostage from the freedom that I can have to really love Jesus and experience the fullest of that life.
        Regan you have spent too much time as an activist with PLFAG et al to see that and you have not personally been yourself in that lifestyle to see the tread mill of the gay life. I do not believe as I said that if this planet turns to gay with that being the fashion of the age as it was in the days of Lot, Greece, or the Roman empire will gay people be truly happy. A counterfeit happiness yes but nothing compared to what Jesus brings. Sorry if I’m bantering you.

      51. You actually went there?!
        How DARE you?!
        This isn’t just about ‘defending minorities’ and definitely not ANY and ALL minorities.
        And then you DARED to include pedophiles into the mix as IF I wouldn’t know the difference between THAT minority and gay people?!
        I’m the one that already posted the difference between MORAL sins, and religious sins that no longer exist because of the medical, technical and social justice progress that must move forward.
        Moral sins, NEVER have changed. Their result can never be accepted because of the harm it does as one individual against another’s physical and personal safety and public trust.

        Between us, I’m the one who spent many years working to FIGHT crime.
        That was a DISGRACEFUL thing to do, while I was really trying to have a ‘conversation’.
        And I used to nanny, and still spend a lot of time with very small children because I love them, but their parents trust me to help them teach their children to be right in the world.
        So now you’re comparing gay people to toddlers, who have no self restraint but have to be taught to follow God in order to keep that restraint in place.
        And if a gay person doesn’t toe that line, they are going to be spoken to, scolded, and so on, as if they are disobedient children.
        You have NO idea what you just did.

        We’re so done.

      52. Now now Regan. You completely misunderstand me and you took what I said out of context from my discussion. How quickly you get offended.
        If you think for a minute that man/boy love won’t become lawful then think again. It existed in antiquity and will once again!
        I wasn’t comparing adult homosexuals to pedophiles at ALL.
        What I was saying is that there are minorities and then there are minorities.
        For you to say the adult homosexual minority is equivalent to Black minority is equally offensive to me and I won’t get boiling mad about that with you.
        So, understand me and don’t jump to strange conclusions.
        If we are here to talk then respect my side as well. You talk morality. Yours is different than mine. You must respect that if you are going to have a conversation.
        Look, I respect everyone’s choice. But, it should be an individual choice without censoring by someone else who has decided they are God and have the right to decide what is true for everyone.
        So Regan, if you want to continue to defend homosexuals do so by talking to those who want that lifestyle. But people like Matt have the right to express a different point of view. People who have same sex attraction should be allowed to read Matt’s blog and decide for themselves. That is no crime. But what exactly is your mission here on this blog and what are you really defending when you speak of the gay minority?

      53. I misunderstand you.
        I have NEVER said that blacks and gays were equivalent.
        What I SAY is, that blacks and gays have been misrepresented, mistreated, and have endured a legacy of prejudice and discrimination that’s damaged trust and the ability for people to see past their distinctions, to see the human being fully.
        I have HEARD your side.
        Why do you keep acting like it’s new? Or never been heard before, nor isn’t interpreted for exactly what it is?
        As if Christians haven’t expressed themselves, and haven’t had the ability or right to all this time?
        I’ve heard it ALL my life!
        I KNOW your side. It’s been out there.
        Your side isn’t shy, or has been hidden, nor has to suffer much or sacrifice much to do so.
        What already IS lawful, is man/GIRL love. There are archaic laws still on the books that allow grown men to marry young girls.
        And every last powerful, public Christian I contacted to address this reality, blew it off.
        Girls, females in general, aren’t much of a concern really.
        And never really have been.
        That is why man/boy love won’t become lawful, because there is an inordinate and obsessive need to protect boys from suspected gay men, not from men in general.
        Anyone with sense SHOULD take offense, so don’t turn it on me as if I was quick to be offended wrongfully.
        You WERE offensive.
        Your condescending tone when telling me this minority from that minority, wasn’t a strange conclusion. That’s how you behaved towards me.
        You don’t think I’d know a minority of criminal child rapists, from the numerical minority that gay people represent?
        Matt’s point of view has been a part of the life of gay people for millennium.
        His point of view, is a point of view that’s mostly been imposed, actually. For a long time, and there has been a very high price paid for the luxury that religious communities have accorded themselves in doing so.
        Whether or not it’s a crime, is what’s debatable.
        Because defamation, slander and libel follow closely after. Incitement of threat, distrust, violence, and panic…there is a reason that modern social justice laws, disqualify such utterances as healthy speech or an exchange of ideas.
        What I’m doing is checking in to see how much of THAT is going on.
        And I have a right to know.
        That is what makes what you think is a choice, not really one at all, unless you like to think a choice between a rock and a hard place is a choice.
        Yes, it is.
        But not much of one.
        You know damn well how much Christians influence people in this country and elsewhere. You know how much they demand to. And still complain about not having prayer in public schools, or some public events, as if there aren’t any other options all over the place to do so.
        You know how many layers of that influence there has been that’s been challenged in a very short time, when it comes to public policies that aren’t a choice for most people.
        People who have same sex attraction will be confronted on Matt’s blog, with the same thing they’ve already heard most of, if not all of their lives.
        And ELSEWHERE other than Matt’s blog.
        I never had need of being only around those who agree with me. I’m taking the temperature of progress on that order.

        I should be able to choose what to do too. I’m not hurting anyone, and offense goes both ways.
        But so far, it hasn’t been as much of a two way street for gay folks. Their side is still blocked and not as free to express themselves because of the influences of religions that a lot of people haven’t chosen, but are confronted by anyway.
        Why DID you bring up the man/boy love issue, then?
        As if girls aren’t constantly under threat, and as if there isn’t considerable double standards when it comes to the gender/sexual orientation factor and the abuse of youngsters?
        You brought it up, now explain yourself.

      54. If you read back I said I’m getting “an inkling” of “your quest and mission”. Since you don’t yourself have SGA and haven’t needed to yourself process that, I’m naturally suspicious of what is up with you. I wanted to flesh that out so I and others could see.

        Your writing style makes sorting out an “inkling” difficult. You
        are interested in minority rights. So am I. I too am interested in
        injustices against Jews, Blacks, the poor, and of course people who have SGA. I don’t want them hurt as well by either religious people with their bible clobber verses or people who don’t understand homosexuality and just think its great!

        You abhor the man/boy love minority. So do I! Why? Who told you it was wrong? It wasn’t wrong in ancient Greece which was a highly developed society steeped in enlightened philosophy. You told me that your idea about sexual orientation comes from psychology. Well psychology has its origins in ancient Greece where man/boy love was tolerated. How then can psychology be trusted? We have seen in the Western world that the age of consent to sexual intercourse has been steadily dropping. How far will it go? Maybe there will be “decades of research” soon to cause the APA to vote that it too is normal for mature consenting man/boy partners like they did in 1973 when they changed homosexuality by 55% of the vote! If your moral compass is based on psychology then things go in circles and soon we’ll be as in ancient Greece because psychology is obviously quite fluid! That’s why I brought up man/boy love. It was to get you to think about where you
        got that idea. In fact the world has been divided by Athens and
        Jerusalem in terms of moral compass. Only Jerusalem with its Bible has the moral compass to say man/boy sex is wrong. That’s were you and I got that idea. It was God through the ancient Jewish Bible who set the parameters for sexual intercourse. Psychology did not nor did religion!

        In Biblical thought sexual intercourse = marriage, and marriage was heterosexual between adults. This was God’s idea. The Bible condemns homosexual sex and therefore likewise homosexual marriage.

        Ok, it’s fine to be for minority rights. I don’t want gays abused either. But people who claim gay sex is good but man/boy sex is not are thinking illogically. The source for that standard needs to come from somewhere, not out of the blue because you just know. You need to think why you know. Because if the source is psychology with its “decades of research” then lady you are on shaky ground about everything and what is true today will not be tomorrow. But if your moral compass is God with His written word the Bible then what was true in antiquity is true today and then you’ll have some credibility.

      55. The bait you’re laying is disgusting, mike. You’re really trying it with me aren’t you?
        “But people who claim gay sex is good, but man/boy love is not, are thinking illogically.
        I didn’t say, nor get my information regarding orientation, based only on ‘psychology’.
        There are physiological, genetic and biological factors that have proven that sexual orientation is all of those things.
        We ALL HAVE ONE.
        Different types, which are all GENDER based.

        People who abuse the young, are NOT an orientation, but a paraphilia. Which is an obsessive,non correspondent, non mutual attraction.
        The object of the attraction does not feel the same mutually.
        This has been settled, and done and no credible psych peers agree that youngsters or teens, can consent or should.
        It takes males even longer to mature than females.
        But evidently, NONE of this matters to you. And you can deny it the way the most gay hating person tends to.
        Who TOLD me it was wrong?
        Nobody really had to. Because I’ve been objectified in MY life, and there are some instinctual things that are known in individuals, but cultural and social mores change those instincts.
        Females are socialized all the time to not defend themselves.
        To dismiss their flight or fight instincts when something or someone feels wrong.
        THAT’S why.
        Referring over and over again to ancient cultures that didn’t categorize or engage in much by way of the recent research, proves you don’t want to believe that such a thing has existed and has evolved.
        Your roads all lead to the same bait and switch way of having a ‘conversation’.
        I don’t need to think why I know.
        Does it not occur to you that perhaps it’s strong maternal PROTECTIVE instincts.
        I was told a lovely, and whimsical story by a man whose religion I doubt you’d respect, but he’s from a long line of priests that represent it.
        People with children love to hear it.
        I thought maybe you might too.
        It all boils down to being a warrior and protector as literally a calling. Because of the race I belong to.
        But you’re a bait and switcher.
        And frankly, it’s disgraceful the direction you turned the conversation, and you turn my stomach.
        You’re a creep.

      56. Regan Regan when pushed into a corner all you can do is hurl insults! How mature. You need to do more reading and studying instead of talking.
        You have been exposed. You don’t know what you’re talking about. My earlier inkling was correct. You are not qualified to speak about homosexuality. We have reached an impasse. There is nothing more to say…

      57. You insulted first, and now you’re being all offended?
        I do know what I’m talking about, you were being manipulative. And I called you out on it.
        And you didn’t like being told that.
        You’re not saying anything new, nothing of new import or that will actually do some good towards changing things.
        You’re invested in fomenting the same old common stereotype, that gets gay people distrusted, (like Bradley).

        Don’t act like you ‘exposed’ anything, as if you saw a crime committed or because I’m not genuflecting, I’m not displaying the right amount of piety, it’s akin to a crime.
        If YOUR only qualifications to speak about homosexuality, is in the constant refrain that it’s not a real concept, it’s not morally benign, and gay people can only be trusted or integrated, if they are religiously disciplined and virtually castrated, then you deserve to be challenged.
        More than ever.
        Your way, YOUR qualifications, mean less and less freedom, more and more confusion and lack of confidence and impossible standards no one else is required to meet.
        YOUR way, hasn’t worked all that well. Not where it REALLY counts.
        You’re right, YOU should say no more, because you’ve said the same thing over and over and over again.
        As have others.
        It’s high time, the new information, and experience have it’s time in the sun.

      58. Thank you for saying EXACTLY what was on my mind. The Holy Spirit has told me not to respond to the rants of fools (Proverbs 26:1-12), and to let others who are better equipped fight the battle. Thank you again for reaffirming what I was told!

      59. Are you going to talk or preach at me? Talking is being polite and answering questions posed in a conversation. You answered none of my questions. Do try to stop preaching and try to converse.

      60. Mike, your questions were rhetorical. You weren’t really interested in anything I had to say. Your first response to me was a complaint that I was here at all.
        I DID answer your question, you didn’t like the answer. Or didn’t read it.
        I didn’t get the ‘sexual orientation’ idea.
        It’s the result of decades of research into standards of attraction that aren’t just about gender. Sexual orientation is mutual correspondent sexual attraction to someone who shares the same.
        Not to be confused with pathology, or paraphilias, which are not exclusive to any of the four essential orientations. These are non correspondent, obsessive behaviors with objects,or living things that cannot, and won’t consent, nor have mutual feelings.
        No one person, nor one researcher found this, many did and many came to the same conclusion and result.
        Further, macro geneticists have found the genetic code for sexual orientation, and there are no defects, or anomalies that distinguish one from the other. Meaning, heterosexuality isn’t the ONLY norm.
        As you should know, there are many kinds of things that can be different, but normal.
        Like blood types. There are four basic, common ones, and rarer ones.
        But that doesn’t mean the rarer type is abnormal or indicates illness.
        Not all things have to be the same to work well together.
        The thumb is in opposition to the fingers. Fingers are also the majority on a hand.
        But the hand is less strong and skilled without the thumb.
        Gay and hetero could work well together if each were mutually understanding of each’s purpose.
        This isn’t an all gay planet, mike. This is a planet of many kinds of people, and things.
        Under population is hardly the problem. Indeed, overpopulation seems to be. And since gay people are a minority, under population because gay people don’t spontaneously procreate, is hardly a problem.
        The way to decide who is right, is by the result of gay individuals being respected, and protected with the same opportunity, rights, freedoms and responsibility, accorded heterosexuals.
        You can’t believe that religious or any other prejudices against gay people has done GOOD in the world?
        It’s led anything from talented and productive people being kept from doing so, to outright homicide.
        And when young gay children are exposed to constant negative messaging they and their peers are taught, they are at risk of being bullied, abandoned by their families, addiction and suicide.
        Do you consider these positive outcomes from the controlling interests of those who don’t want homosexuality (so therefore gay people) to exist?

        It’s a fact that religious teaching has influenced thousands of years of social construction that hasn’t all been positive or healthy.
        And in that context, gay people haven’t had nearly the freedom, or ability to contribute to the truth of their identity and lives.
        It’s just a matter of fairness to let their side be accorded this, and the truth will speak for itself, when the truth can actually be spoken by those this issue most affects.
        I answered your questions mike, and from a combined experience of forensic science that includes human behavioral teaching. And as I said, very close and profound relationships with many members of the gay and trans community.
        I have no reason to lie. Not here, not anywhere.
        To anyone, about something this important.

      61. My questions were “rhetorical”! No.
        What is clear is this Regan: ” I see the Bible as a chronology of thought at the time, philosophy, parables, and metaphors.
        NOT necessarily a guide book on how to LIVE. ”
        Having dismissed the God who created you Regan you reveal your actual god to whom you turn: “decades of research” for “how to LIVE”!
        But studied people know about that research which proves nothing Regan!
        The APA in 1973 changed their minds about whether sodomy was a mental illness not on “decades of research” but on the gay lobby and politics. Now that is a fact you cleverly dismiss.
        The Book you dismiss for “how to LIVE” if you read it has only one kind of marriage and it is not several.
        But you can’t dismiss God so easily who gives you time to repent of this error of yours. You remind me of that woman Jezebel of the Church of Thyatira of Revelation who misleads God’s servants into “sexual sin”. God gave her time to repent and then came an end to it. You can read the rest in the book.
        With your fast typing you dismiss the God of the Bible in place of a humanistic god of your own making who is no god at all.

      62. People who rant about how much gay people hate themselves because they choose to follow Jesus are actually the ones who loathe self. It’s a fact! People hate the things about others that they want for themselves. Being gay is not a sin.

      63. Since Jesus isn’t real that just makes them delusional. But hey it’s a great way to get people like you to hate yourself.

      64. I don’t hate myself! I’m living a great life with Christ Jesus! See I know something that you don’t! I never want or need sex with a man or a woman. I never feel the desire to be naked with another man and I don’t want anyone touching me for sex! I am just simply happy. See, through God’s deliverance from my flesh and it’s lust, I have more peace than you have ever had, on the best day of your life!
        I wish that you wanted to know that kind of peace and security! I don’t hate you or want bad things for you! I want you to know this Jesus!

      65. Well, what do you want for such a declaration? Applause, a medal? An attaboy, you ain’t gettin’ any?
        Well, so what?
        You say you don’t hate or want bad things for those of us who don’t feel the way you do, but you called the gay community at large, coercive and propagandizing lies.
        That’s quite a hateful statement to make.
        You have no idea what peace a person has had, on the best day of their life? You have no way to qualify that, except through the believer or non believer lens.
        You’re an example of how a Christian will give with one hand, then take back what they gave you with the other.
        Which leaves…nothing.

      66. No although you obviously think that you do! But guess what? You don’t, you’re like a broken record! “I want!” ‘I need!” I’m San because I can’t wear my butt less chaps out to eat at a family restaurant! Who cares if kids see all my package!”
        FYI 1 Cm isn’t a package its a latenite punchline!

      67. The stupid irony of your statement is, I’ve been spending a lifetime to LEARN about it. And keep getting stonewalled by the likes of people such as yourself.
        Whose only references are religious, or from outmoded information that no longer applies, if it ever did.
        Your information, that you insist I read, has already been gone through.
        I’m looking for more, something different, something more than stereotypes.
        With Christians working to game the information track, it’s not even right to scold, or insult someone for trying to go deeper, and while YOU are trying to control everything about being gay.

      68. Bradley, you’re not the only one to ever suffer a serious health setback, and not have people around you that you expected.
        I could tell you about my husband and his parents (who NEVER missed church), but when I was suffering terrible pain, and scary diagnosis and one surgery after another, my husband abandoned me and his parents chose that time to gang up and kick me while I was down.
        Evidently, their lifelong membership in Christianity didn’t teach them anything but to be judgmental.
        Again, I didn’t blame ALL WHITE PEOPLE, because of those particular white people.
        Nor all Christians.
        And I can name a few things that happened to me because of A FEW lying, nasty gay people.
        But I won’t BLAME ALL GAY PEOPLE.
        And black women can say they and their children are abandoned regularly by the men who fathered their children.
        But I don’t BLAME ALL BLACK people.
        You see the issue here?
        You’re blaming a group, who you think failed YOU, but I don’t hear that you did ANYTHING for them.
        After a while, an ‘ex gay’ person inevitably will throw themselves several pity parties in which to disparage gay people for what could be personal shortcomings.
        But then, you’re giving anti gay bigots the fodder they want, and at the same time YOU don’t want to feel any accountability for it.
        I would never betray black folks the way you have other gay people.
        Because at the end of the day, black people have been betrayed by religious communities in their way, when the going got tough to defend a minority it wasn’t popular or easy to defend.

      69. I can see you are very angry about your past. Full of resentment. I understand this. But I not a victime, nor will be sucked into the culture of victimhood. I am not a minority that needs “protection” from a political group or a government. I a child of God, no more, no less; and that is the greatest equality I ever could hope for.
        I think what frustrates you is that I recognize that I need help from my brothers and sisters in Christ to stay celibate. You think I shouldn’t seek solace in God but in the political movement du jure. They don’t represent me, nor does anybody on Earth. I have an advocate who is above all that, He being Jesus Christ. I am not “brainwashed” or part of some dumb cult. I was largely raised without “religion” and when I was exposed to it, it was false.
        Also, saying that I am not the only one who faced a health “setback” and at saying that I should support a minority organization is kind of two-faced, isn’t it. What I experienced brought me closer to God than all the religions combined. I noticed that you responded to Mike that you are qualified to speak for LGBT members, but you aren’t qualified to speak for me. No man can but Christ. He can speak for you too, if you let Him.
        Believe in Him, trust in Him. He was faithful to me even after I rejected Him. He even sent me the stroke, knowing that I would come back to Him, and that I would have to fully trust in Him to get me by. Seek Him! Let go of your rage and anger about your past! Ask Him to forgive you of your sins, as He forgave mine.

      70. You were the one expressing anger and resentment about who didn’t support you during a crisis.
        Don’t project onto me.
        What I said was, that I had a similar experience, but didn’t blame anyone for it.
        Unlike you, is is expounded upon to reject who and what you are and blame THAT and others like you for it.
        Big difference, so recognize THAT.
        Did you just say all this for an opportunity to preach? Because typical of self interested Christians, you didn’t LISTEN.
        Your brothers and sisters in Christ, as you call them, aren’t doing anything new that isn’t and hasn’t been EXPECTED of gay people all along.
        I don’t care or expect you to join a political movement, but calling it ‘du jure’ is a disgustingly dismissive attitude to take considering who fought hard, died and made sacrifices for the freedoms and protections that exist now.
        You can’t thank the Christian community that would prefer you didn’t for that.
        I don’t have to speak for you.
        But don’t pretend I don’t recognize you.
        Or every other gay person like you.
        Because you talk the same, say the same things, over and over again as IF I haven’t heard it before.
        And by the way, you talk about rage or passion as if it’s a BAD thing.
        Because I’ve gotten mad at injustice, at AIDS, and at wrong doing towards my LGT brothers and sisters and I ACTED and produced RESULTS in that regard.
        I turned what I experienced into something positive and effective for OTHERS where it mattered.
        In ways that are different from what Christians think they’ve accomplished.
        What I’m talking about is blaming your sexual orientation and those who share it, for other troubles.
        And then using religion as a substitute for what’s truly necessary:
        being authentic, being genuine.
        Being closer to God isn’t a bad thing.
        But you’re doing it at the expense of something else very important.
        THAT is what I’m talking about.
        This is the only subject that brings out the same, tread worn sermons, and not an in depth discussion about the real matter at hand.

      71. Not replying to you anymore, as you only want to argue. I am tired and I have things to do. I do have a life outside of your attempts to get me to ‘love’ myself and ‘accept’ what I am. Report me to your superiors if you must (just a joke, as I have a sense of humor about these rants). Christ cares for you and loves you. Seek him, while you still can…

      72. I had a question or two for you, you didn’t answer.
        And as someone who says they find answers in God and Christ, the basket you offered was still empty.
        I’m not the one who wishes you never walked the Earth.
        Go in peace, then.

      73. Mannnn Regan, you just PREACHED! I appreciate your words & understanding. Im glad to be in the fight in changing the ‘norm’ of how LGBT are viewed through the lens of Christian thought. People like you are a blessing to help bring context to this issue. You’re absolute right, no ones sexuality is a lifestyle; it’s an identity. Still trying to figure out when heterosexuals chose to be straight, lol.

      74. Haha, seriously though. I’d like a boyfriend, too, but I can’t justify it. It’s weird seeing gay friends and acquaintances either “married” or hooking up and I’m sitting here doing it the hard way. Lord, help me.

      75. I would recommend that you stay pure. Do not listen to the uninformed opinions of those who claim they love us and understand us. Stay faithful to the Lord. Ask for help: there is no shame in this. Don’t feel compelled to seek out anyone, for this is selfish. Seek God first, and let Him guide you where He wants. The world wants us to fall prey to our desires, but what does God want? Follow Him! He will help you endure.

        All my prayers for you!

      76. That’s rather condescending (you’re in no position to “pity” me) Tim Walstrum, but hey, I forgive ya! Thank you, Bradley Joel Morton.

      77. Well, you see how I was dismissed as having “uninformed opinions”, and wasn’t asked about my exceptional EXPERIENCE with gay folks, who fortunately, have been very open, loving and trusting of me. Something I cherish very much.
        Perhaps because I have such remarkable and talented friends, it feels like I’m blessed. And I am always so grateful and humbled by that experience.
        And believe me when I say I know who to be grateful to for not just the love, but the open hearts that gave me the experience.

      78. I am a position to pity you. Self hatred is really sad. It is a sickness. And religion is what you use to further it. So so sad.

      79. Uninformed opinions? Really?
        I’m RIGHT here, Bradley. Right here.
        Tell me how I’m uninformed? Tell me.
        Because I was raised in the church AND temple.
        I own a Bible, and a lot of other religious texts.
        I’m a FEMALE, the religion never invested much in us females, except as in servitude to the male hierarchy, and over the centuries it’s only been males wo entitled themselves to how church doctrine would be implemented and enforced.
        Most of the victims of the Inquisition were women. And don’t get me started on the Magdalene laundries that only incarcerated girls and women.
        Who do you think YOU are talking to?
        Black people weren’t allowed to marry, and certainly weren’t allowed to marry someone a different color until RECENTLY. I’m not talking ancient history here.
        Did you ever ASK me, how harsh things could be for a black woman?
        In my gay brothers and sisters, I found kindred spirits, not people to suspect. And the considerable universal aspect of gay people to all human life and history, is the story of a remarkable human minority that hasn’t waged wars, and bloody decimation of entire indigenous people (the way the Christian march over all the continents did that).
        And even the recent changes that have occurred, in which marriage and having children and being considered by skill set FIRST, is all due to bravery, compassion and love, not DOMINANCE and control.
        Christians can’t say that.
        But gay folks can.
        MY culture, wasn’t originally Christian. But the acceptance, inclusion and respect for gay people AS gay people, has done a world of good for millions.
        I dare you to say that isn’t true.
        Relationships are very hard for black women and men. The greater influence of systemic bigotry and discrimination rears it’s head every day in ways this country preferred to think didn’t happen.
        YOU advising someone to not seek out a relationship, and another level of human life that tests unselfishness and responsibility is ridiculous. And shame on you.
        You can’t even express a casual gesture of affection without checking yourself.
        Which is extremely sad.
        At the end of the day Bradley, the Bible doesn’t tell you it loves you. It won’t hug you, or place an affectionate hand on you. When you were ill, it didn’t hold you or give you support.
        And if you reject it, it won’t cry or feel depression or sadness.
        It’s a book.
        The human touch, the human connection is the greater after all.
        And continuing to use the platitudes of “Jesus loves you, believe, it’ll be all you need”, is just another kind of distance you’re keeping from another person.

      80. Sad just sad. Well those of us blessed to have loving husbands not chained to archaic religious views pity you.

      81. On the bright side, unflinching repentance of something that big seems to me to be extremely good assurance of your salvation. Perseverance is the test of faith. How many people could repent of that on their own strength? I suspect it’s zero.

      82. Yes, but you’d be a lot happier if all the other gay people chose God too, and not really be gay people or engage in a romantic relationship with another gay person, though right?
        That would make all the other Christians you associate with, just as happy to have that happen.
        Which is why they appeal to the Senate, Congress, SCOTUS and are willing to change the tenets of the Constitution to MAKE SURE that no gay person will have any such pursuits of happiness of THEIR choosing.
        So, you chose God.
        But let’s not pretend what the Christian agenda has been for thousands of years.
        Trust me Bradley, they’d just as soon you didn’t exist at all, but since you MUST…
        What you’re doing now, will just have to do.

      83. Choosing God made you a Christian, but I’m not sure in our day and age the institutional church can be trusted with the knowledge of your past. I certainly haven’t. You are being singled out, and if I were you I would at least consider getting a new church and leaving the past behind you that your oh-so-loving brothers and sisters will never let go.

        Remember this: you know what it means to repent in a way that none of them ever will. There is nothing they can teach you and it is not they who keep you accountable. God does that. Otherwise you would’ve failed utterly before you ever started.

        In this life it is a basic rule of natural law that no one will look out for you but yourself. You have to protect yourself because you are the one God entrusted with that purpose. You have authority to do this. Your church is keeping you down and I recommend you fire them.

      84. In reading what Bradley states above, I can only surmise that the physical contact on his guest’s shoulder brought the question into the mind of his brother who then asked if Bradley had fallen back into a worldly life. In you stated reply I need to ask if you are responding to a conclusion stemming from within yourself and your past or is there something in Bradley’s statement above that reveals something I do not discern? Bradley himself admits he was angered initially until he thought it through and realized his brother was inquiring just a he should when we hold each other accountable so that we do not lapse back into sinful worldly patterns that lead us from Christ.
        At this time, I must let Bradley tell his story by his words and see if there is unresolved issues that call into mind questions that help us grow. And what I read in both Matt’s and Bradley’s stories are stories of accountability in action. For if there is no accountability between brothers and sisters in Christ in the Church, then what is the reason for Christ and Paul even speaking on the matter in Matthew and 1 & 2 Corinthians?
        Please help us understand your story so we can understand the WHY for what you are saying.

      85. Hello Mike, appreciate your question.
        This isn’t anything new to me. I’m a naturally analytical person and have had many long conversations and even tried to access the kinds of ‘reparative therapy’ programs set up only for gay people in Christian and Jewish religious communities.
        This accountability you speak of, would seem reasonable, rational and necessary to said religious communities.
        But on very clear headed and practical scrutiny, it’s intent and results, aren’t actually for the gay person’s well being.
        Because it’s a known and verifiable fact, that the kinds of expectations these communities have for gay people is unhealthy repressing of very natural and necessary needs, desires and goals.
        What is expected of gay people, is harsh under the light of reality. And again, NOT NECESSARY, except to meet unrealistic, yes, unrealistic religious rules and standards that I already said, are not required nor can be met by heterosexuals.
        “Sinful worldly patterns”.
        What is THAT defined by?
        Evidently, even monogamous, responsible and healthy sexual commitment, for a gay person.
        Flirting, wearing certain types of clothes…
        Even casual affection is regarded as a warning sign that gay person is slipping their knots.
        Interest is considered a violation. That’s hardly extreme behavior that should set up a person’s discomfort or the religious community’s idea that gay person is ‘falling back into their sin’.
        I’ve also had members of that same community say that all gay people deserve to be banned from being around children.
        And don’t deserve to hold any positions of influence or higher office in church hierarchy.
        Let alone served when trying to access goods and services legally open to any other members of the public, yes…even the other sinners who happen to be heterosexual.
        This kind of scrutiny of one’s most innocuous behavior is bad enough.
        But it doesn’t take anything extreme for a gay person to be distrusted, and rendered extremely suspect.
        That’s no way for ANY human being to have to live.
        My skin color has rendered me also highly suspect. For my entire life, it was difficult for me to talk with another black person in a workplace without someone coming up on us demanding to know what we were up to.
        One black person is unwelcome, two is a conspiracy in the minds of passive bigots.
        And using the veil of religion to exercise bigotry isn’t any less detestable, harsh and irrational.
        So why are gay people the ones left to defend their existence, and justify their intentions?
        Why are THEY questioned, no matter what their level of responsibility and social adjustment?
        Because religious communities have created the problem for gay people, and have the arrogance and moral cowardice to try to run from the ruins it creates in so many lives.
        Sure, Bradley and Matt and so many other gay people can say it’s their choice, to commit to God and Christ and they LOVE it like that.
        But in a way, it’s demurring other gay people who have had the courage to be themselves openly and without guilt.
        But it’s also another way to not have to deal with how tough it is to be gay.
        That I understand, just what it feels like to be a member of a suspect minority. To always have your intents, purpose, wants and needs DENIED as simply and reasonably the same as anyone else who is reasonable and rational.
        But it always comes back to gay people’s orientation being a flaw, an outsized lust, with no context to it’s origin except as just something gay people do.
        And can turn off and change, and SHOULD.
        While all around them, NOBODY else is treated this way, they are not suspect, nor have to explain themselves or else be told over and over again their presence is not just worthless, but a threat.
        Unless they become shills for the Christian agenda.
        I always found that those Christians who reached out to Jews to try and convert THEM was another level of treating another human being as not worth as much, the way they already were.
        In context to Jews constantly being under siege, who are a minority that has been on the receiving end of attempts at genocide (as have gay people), it’s another way of losing more members of this minority, without actually killing them outright.
        I find this kind of treatment of gay people to be similar. A kind of genocide, a means of keeping gay people’s identity, needs and truth away from those who are interested in who gay people really are.
        Who don’t suspect gay people, but have every reason to suspect the religious communities who want gay people to HIDE.
        What accountability are you talking about then?
        Accountability for wanting to be loved, not suspected in every thing? For meeting someone with the hope they could be a life mate?
        Accountability for wanting to raise children who need a home? Or serving one’s country in uniform?
        Accountability for doing what heterosexuals do without challenge everyday? Indeed, are even APPLAUDED?
        These are the impossible, and irrational double standards that confront the gay folks. But it’s the courageous, and considerably reasonable gay folks that broke through that wall, and built a less harsh and cruel society.
        NOT Christians like Matt, or Bradley…or others like them I met along the way.
        The unspoken truth here is, they are rather weak people, who didn’t see any options or other avenues to bravely take.
        They took the path of least resistance, and don’t want to admit it or have anyone say it.
        Because that too, is another unpalatable reality they don’t want to have to deal with.
        A person is still their orientation, as I said, regardless an active romantic sex life is in evidence. And the public life (not private life) of a gay person is still suspect, even with a casually affectionate gesture that was no more than that.
        And still, Bradley had to check himself.
        I’m betting that there are parents in his church that wouldn’t want him around their children either.
        Or who’d expect him to be held accountable if there is a job they don’t think is appropriate for a gay person to have.
        Like teaching Bible class, only under strict supervision.
        The thing is, ALL gay people are at risk of this impossible ‘accountability’.
        Ancient cultures had unreasonable and barbaric methods, and modern social justice has changed that.
        But let’s get real, the only people who want to continue with enforcement, is against gay people where convenient.
        And neither Matt, nor Bradley have had the stomach to change those things. Not for themselves, not for their fellow gay and trans brothers and sisters.
        That’s fine.
        But don’t kick ME because I know what the deal is.
        I pointed out the moral sins, that have NEVER changed in how it effects individuals, and communities in result.
        And I pointed out the religious sins, that have been modified (and rightly) as human progress and experience warranted.
        The matter of gay people is one of them. So is the matter of women, and gender in general.
        I would only appreciate accountability, if it were APPLIED equally and some good came from it.
        But my question of what public and social good ever came from the celibate, neutered gay person that’s done good for EVERYONE, never got answered.
        I already know the answer though, but it’s telling that those here who act SO CERTAIN of their intent and purpose, didn’t want to consider the question.

      86. Hello Regan,
        Thank you for responding.

        You started with expectations and a discussion of what is ‘good’ and the ‘well-being’ for the people in some communities. If I am wrong on this then I apologize. You then shift back to accountability with a question and a statement.
        In an effort to stay in line with what you wrote I will also start with communities and look at what they consider as ‘good’ and ‘well-being’ for the people in the communities.

        I am asking we try to avoid some of the rabbit trails by looking at communities as families so we can examine them as singular entities (families) that are just as diverse as actual families are.
        (smile) And yes, we would be making the families large families in an effort to remain in context as much as possible. This should enable us to build a foundation by which we can discuss communities and the concepts of ‘good’ and ‘well-being’.

        So in simple terms, what does a family (ideally) consist of? And (ideally) do families look for what is ‘good’ and best for the ‘well-being’ of the family members?
        I cannot address distrust of people based on sexual orientation, skin color, or other differences for the simple reason that everyone alive experiences this feeling and exhibit distrust through action/inaction. This is not to push it to the side as not important, I just cannot discuss it at this time as it muddies the water so we cannot see the bottom (select topics) without chasing side topics that do not address select topics. We can discuss some of the side topics at a later time if you desire or if entry of a side topic becomes necessary.
        In the middle of all this you ask me about my use of “sinful worldly patterns” and what they are defined by.

        Just by asking the question I must ask the following so I can answer your question.

        Do you believe in God? (and) If yes, in your own words, please tell me about God.
        You shift to accountability by asking me what accountability I was writing about.

        The accountability I wrote about is the same accountability described by Matt and Bradley and shown in Matthew 18:15-17, 1 Corinthians 5:3-5, and 2 Corinthians 2:6-8.

        I did immediately recognize that your use of accountability does not match with its definition and we must use the same definitions if we are to understand each other. This does not mean we will always agree but at least we will understand each other.

        To start, ‘Accountability’ is a verb and means “the quality or state of being accountable; an obligation or willingness to accept responsibility or to account for one’s actions.”

        Wanting to be loved cannot be an obligation or a responsibility. You cannot have an obligation or responsibility for hoping someone could be a life mate. You cannot be have an obligation or responsibility for wanting to raise children.

        Accountability while serving one’s country in uniform is possible where you and a ‘battle buddy’ or ‘wingman’ (depending upon Service) are accountable to each other, keeping the other in line with what the particular Services’ regulations/instructions dictate.
        At the end you identify both Matt and Bradley as not being strong but describe them as being weak. I do not understand. You state it takes strength to openly declare who you are? If so, then how are Matt and Bradley different for declaring who they are? The path they are walking is filled with resistance from all sides.

        Open declaration is the same action they took when they stepped out the first time and declared their same-sex orientation. They have done a second open declaration and have had and continually deal with added resistance. Matt has already addressed his experience and thoughts on this in the blog.
        Near the end of your reply, you ask the question, “What public and social good ever came from the celibate, neutered gay person that is good for everyone?”, but immediately after asking the question you admit you already know the answer. I am curious what the answer is that you know.
        If you have other questions for me, please ask and I will try to answer to give you a picture of who I am as well. My questions are to help me come to know you better so we can communicate.

      87. Thank you so much Mike, for your thoughtful response, I truly appreciate it.
        I will say this.
        The legacy that originated in the Bible and other religious texts as to the treatment of gay people, has been a tragic and harsh one.
        With the concept that gay people, or let’s say those who engage in any sex that is not for the purpose of procreation, is committing a grievous sin.
        But as further human experience has shown, this is not a threat, nor are the people who engage in it.
        Much of the legacy of prejudice and threat that gay people deal with, is rooted in misogyny, or from a time when childbearing was a mortal issue for females and the infants as well.
        Women are not a minority, but sometimes I think that’s why females have so little value. It’s taken for granted there are many for anyone to choose from and should.
        Gay people, those who are transgender, are taken for granted as people who have no value in procreating, so therefore no value in any other area of life.
        But since it’s religious communities that have demanded and have had the most influence on who they think gay people are, then they deserve to be held accountable for the tragedies and denial of human rights that gay people experience.
        Families, are where gay people come from. But to hear those who object to the existence of gay people, it’s the choice of gay people to exist, and their presence in a family, deserves specific and determined isolation and separate standards for participation in what people expect.
        To eventually take responsibility in a relationship and what children might issue from it.
        Such an endeavor signals and usually has, that person has matured and has promised to be responsible for those they have chosen to journey life with romantically, physically and socially.
        Which is what makes relying on gay people to eschew the same goal, especially cruel.
        As if requiring them to attend a feast, they cannot have the same food or any of it.
        And no undeserving heterosexual person is kept from the feast, no matter how many times they’ve proven their lack of ability to function fully as a responsible person.
        For example: people who are murderers in prison, not being kept from the right to marry. But fully contributing, law abiding gay people, could not.

        As young people in families are exploring their burgeoning needs to have relationships, and navigating the insecurities of romantic urges and profound longings and crushes, gay young people are expected to repress and deny them.
        And instead, try to find some reciprocity in God and Christ. Who are INTANGIBLES.
        And all around them, other young people are fully free to find their way with learning to have relationships. Some have the examples of their own parents, for good or not.
        Some do not.
        Certainly heterosexual parents have already been at a loss as to how to comfort or understand their gay child’s needs.
        But to wholesale tell that youngster, ‘not for you’, while their siblings, friends and other adults are not so held in restraint.
        And are kept from other gay people who are a fine example of success and function and integration.
        How can a young person look at all the contradictions, hypocrisy, and their own real and intense feelings are required to be held in check. That everything they feel and know or want, is suspect.
        This is what has led to misguided outreach, promiscuity and other dysfunction borne from repression, and arrested ability in relationships.
        This has put young gay people at risk of suicide, depression and health problems.
        Bradley being an example of that.
        Once again, God and Christ are INTANGIBLE. Accountability and consequences are ABSTRACT.
        Not real.
        It’s only ever been other human beings who have isolated, punished and set aside gay people for specific expectations that are RADICALLY different from what REALITY can address.
        Bradley said he counseled young people with SSA.
        He’s someone I would absolutely KEEP AWAY from a gay kid, because his influence would be extremely damaging and more of the LEGACY of damage focused on and that only affects gay and trans individuals.
        Most of all, as a minority, globally, not just nationally, the idea that MORE repression, MORE disappearance and MORE secretion of NORMAL and NEEDFUL functions of homosexuality, is expected.
        That would make a significant part of humanity, not be around to teach and honor the truth of their GOD GIVEN existence.
        The presence of gay people has just been too complex for some ancient cultures to accept or understand at the detriment of millions.
        And other cultures, that were fully accepting and understood homosexuality more for what it was, found themselves punished for it, by the march and influence of religion across the continents.
        I’m talking about BAD influence that has done a GREAT deal of harm, and has been predatory on the vulnerable, insecure and battle fatigued from having to live with such societal and political influence over their lives.
        That hasn’t been a good thing.
        But Christians like to pretend it HAS been.
        It’s only been a few short decades that gay people have been so visible, and remarkable in how social justice has advanced for them.
        No thanks to the Christian and other religious communities that protests this advancement, or the gay people who capitulate to it.

        Christians and other religions have had the floor for centuries, and expect to ALWAYS have it, and all access. And demand it.
        What a graceless way to behave.
        I get the scold and admonishment to “go read the Bible” or “accept God and Christ” as if I never have. Or what that books says is new every time it’s read.
        I and others can’t be spared such a thing hardly any time of the day.
        But I am one of millions who are tired of it. And want to hear from the gay folks for a change. What their experience has been but most of all, what THEY want, and need.
        I already know what Christians want. But no one has had as much opportunity to hear from gay people.
        And it’s long past due.
        Bradley, Matt…et al. They say the same things, over and over again. There have been so many ex gays that wrote books, but all the books and their pasts were cut from the same stereotypical mold.
        I continually get Biblical references, but none to do with civil law and public policy. No referrals to heroic gay people, no referrals to the historic changes that JUST HAPPENED.
        Ancient history is just that. I see the Bible as a chronology of thought at the time, philosophy, parables, and metaphors.
        NOT necessarily a guide book on how to LIVE.
        And certainly not anything to do with how things actually happen.
        My degree is in forensics and crime science.
        My job with the police, put me up close with the most depraved of human behavior there ever was.
        The moral and ethical imperative, is to know what human beings are dangerous.
        Which is why I distinctly pointed out moral sins that never change, and why they compromise human safety and trust and community cohesion.
        And the kinds of behaviors that are morally neutral, and do not harm human safety and trust or cohesion.
        Christians, especially conservative ones, REFUSE to acknowledge these specific differences.
        They continue to posit gay people as perverts, a threat to children, and whose motives are suspect and evil.
        And whose existence offends God, and the presence of gay people is a work of the devil.
        And gay people just behave that way TO offend God and Christians in particular.
        This is the legacy that the religious refuse to own up to. And what a MESS they’ve made. Even when gay people neuter themselves and eschew a romantic life.
        Other gay people have had to pay for it, in ways that disturbs the peace of truly fair minded, rational people.
        Communities aren’t bettered by the repression of gay people and never did. Because eventually, the larger community is being cruel in their expectations on that order.
        And even good intentions, can have disastrous results. And it’s arrogant of religious communities to not acknowledge that.
        Through my work with PFLAG and other family orientated support groups for the LGT, the religious have been at the root of their problems and reconciling both, extremely difficult.
        But it’s definitely been more of a boon to families, than the kind of outreach to young people Bradley said he did.
        He had to spend WAY too much time, trying to check himself on a casual spontaneous gesture of affection towards another male.
        Which tends to be a homicidal disaster for gay people all the time.
        THAT is what has to change. And should.
        NOT what gay people do and express romantically or not as their orientation has warranted all along.

      88. Hello Regan,

        It is obvious you possess two qualities.
        1) you are a prolific writer/typist
        2) you are well practiced in what you put forward

        I say this because you posted an extensive reply within an hour after my post and that is working within the mindset that you read what I wrote.

        Reading your reply I noticed you emphasized certain statements by the use of capitalization to draw my attention. I also am under the impression you are an advocate for a people group that you yourself are not a member of.
        I did go looking for answers to the questions I asked and did not find any straight answers.
        So I will start with what I am able infer and that is you disagree with the Bible. What exactly you disagree with in the Bible is a great topic for a later time if you are willing. But overall the Bible has little or no discussion value if you do not believe God exists.
        I cannot actually see if you do believe God exists because you never simply state if you do or do not believe God exists. What I did see are two statements basically saying that God and Christ are intangible.

        The first time you use it, I could understand as the definition of “Intangible” (as I know it) is its use as an adjective meaning incapable of being perceived by the sense of touch; immaterial. And following this line of logic, we are intangible to each other; you are intangible to me and I to you since we cannot sense (touch) the other. We can only infer each other’s existence because we are responding to each other on this blog.

        Thus, I was able read it as God and Christ are immaterial. But so is the air we breathe, the WiFi we use with our computers, the electricity powering pretty much everything we use, etc… So the inference is easy for me to read and comprehend even though I cannot agree with the sentence it is embedded.

        The second time you use it you added “Accountability and consequences are abstract. Not real.” Here you lost me on several levels. As I cannot discern if the “Not real” statement is acting as an all-inclusive additive to the two previous sentences or not.

        Whether it is all-inclusive or not I have to ask if you really believe that ‘Accountability and Consequences are Abstract’ and ‘Not Real’? If you do it gives the impression that you are stating accountability has no value because it’s impractical or theoretical because it is not real; and consequences have no value because it’s impractical or theoretical because it is not real. Somehow with all your passion being an advocate for the LGBT community this does not ‘square’ with what you are posting.

        So exactly what are you stating here?
        Lastly, you mention you have a degree in forensics and crime science, which I believe to be an excellent degree that makes use of logic and deduction for law enforcement. The only other person I am acquainted with the same interest and is known as a celebrated cold-case detective. You may know or heard of him, J. W. Wallace.

      89. I admit in my own writing, I might become abstract myself, if not circumspect. I apologize.
        Let me try to clarify.
        I do, in fact believe in God. Or some form of higher power and Creator.
        I have been so fortunate to have learned and experienced a lot early in life. But most of all, to be dazzled by such simple things as a night sky full of stars, the varieties of flowers and trees, and the wealth of colors my eyes can see.
        I’m a photographer and artist, so visuals are important to me as are their interpretation.
        However, I am frustrated that people can know and understand this level of diversity, but solidly believe that humans themselves only come in a few genders, one superior color, and so on.
        And certainly have hurt each other over the differences, rather than accept them and keep learning.
        Even in this day and age when the opportunities are so accessible and doesn’t require much sacrifice.
        Which is why, it feels like the expectation that gay people aren’t meant to be or aren’t a part of the greater of God’s plans, is offensive to me.
        And using religious tools to further repress that, so that it’s harder to learn about gay people, or what they’d be like and accomplish without the legacy of restraint, does as well.

        When gay people are hurt by it, those who have caused it, balk at being held accountable, and ignore the consequences of THEIR actions.
        Indeed, just keep right on steam rolling as if this has worked and hasn’t left considerable wreckage in the process.
        Wreckage that Bradley barely survived.
        They just retooled what’s been expected all along. SOS, DD as it were.
        It was a mystery to the gay and trans folks I’ve known so well, that I was so fierce in what I was doing.
        I had no children, siblings…no one at least in my family. I started all this as a teen. But only a few years before, had seen the civil rights movement, women’s liberation…and experienced Jim Crow personally years later.
        Anti gay people never knew what to make of me, except to say I was some kind of traitor.
        Betraying other heterosexuals for being so accepting.
        But how else is anyone going to learn anything, unless they accept they ARE ignorant, and can’t speak for the group they don’t trust, nor want to hear from.
        I was ever curious and analytical. The only people to learn from, were the people who experience their lives unadulterated by the kinds of interference I see from religious groups.
        I saw it with people who wanted to maintain segregation.
        I saw it with men, who expect women to only be seen as at their service and objectified.
        And I experience that first hand.
        Now, it didn’t me make a man hater, or racist myself. The negatives I’ve experienced. Such a response is worthless to growth and education.
        But as for accountability, the religious use the intangibles of reward/punishment through heaven and hell or what God will or won’t accept.
        When we both know, it’s only other humans that have judged, enforced and punished other humans.
        God hasn’t been in the mix on that tip, whatsoever.
        so it’s trying to make people believe the intangible, as opposed to the tangible that’s messed up their lives.
        And also as a female, I can put it together to just what level misogyny and it’s extension through anti gay and trans sentiment, permeates the most influential religions, so therefore, I feel no support from it.
        Some residual knowledge of my cultural origins had a FAR more logical and compassionate reason for accepting the gender variant than any other religious are going to convince me of.
        And then there are the stereotypes, the ready and easily believed myths about being gay. Or what’s in store for gay people, if they don’t believe or comply with whatever church community requires of them.
        So much slut shaming, and asserting that being gay is just so miserable, and disease ridden, and horrible, NO ONE would want THAT!
        And virtually to a ONE, an ex gay, or gay person like Matt, will over and over again, talk about being promiscuous, or addicted, or having some other kind of season of misery, until…they saw the light.
        I don’t know if you have ANY idea how often that song gets sung, and it’s very much a part of the Christian roadshow.

        So I think what I meant by the consequences and accountability, I am WITNESSING first hand, the double and unrealistic standards placed on people who have barely had the floor to give truth that really has to be heard.
        There is NO accountability from the religious for the damage, no consequences to them. Not really.
        And only once, did a few Christians show up at a rally to APOLOGIZE for just what I’m talking about.
        I’ve had it with the running interference (which is essentially what Bradley says he does with outreach to youngsters who are SSA).
        God and Christ are not immaterial.
        But God and Christ are used as cover for some serious miscalculations by other human beings. To put it mildly.
        How this persists against ONLY gay people would make any logic based, fair minded person very anger.
        And certain kinds of anger, which I possess, has helped me get to what I’ve wanted. An enduring, and very loving relationship with a LOT of different people who are gay and transgender.
        I know what the more conservative religious people say about people I consider treasured family.
        That is where you see a lot of stupidity, cruelty, vicious misrepresentation and defamation.
        And that also makes me angry, because their ignorance and repeated interference is DANGEROUS.
        So what can be done when people are that wrong, but don’t care and are certain God is on their side?
        With so many lives in ruins sometimes, or the resentment at the triumph of the gay community, all things considered….
        It’s fair to say that the religious have been very, very wrong.
        From reading Matt’s articles, he’s not stupid, and he’s certainly not mean spirited.
        But I get the sense that he just couldn’t and didn’t want the kinds of burdens that being gay brings.
        Burdens that religious communities have so thoughtlessly piled on.
        I know what the burden of my skin color and gender feels like.
        But I’ll be damned more, for capitulating to anyone who thinks I’m not fit to walk the Earth because of them, either.

      90. Thank you very much. Forgive me. My new job is nights, and I had to give up my usual dose of caffeine (my only vice, well maybe buying shoes).
        So If I have moments of incoherence, I came by it honestly.

      91. Hi Regan,
        Thank you for your reply. Please forgive my late reply. I have not forgotten to reply, I have just been unable to do so.

      92. Do not apologize, my friend. You have a life, it’s understandable. I would miss having this exchange with you though.

      93. Hello Regan,
        As I do not know when this blog article will shut down I am giving you my yahoo prefix. This way we can continue talking. Jeremiah160364

      94. I only got as far as where you say, “In context to Jews constantly being under siege, who are a minority that has been on the receiving end of attempts at genocide (as have gay people)”, and had to stop reading! When and where was the Gay Holocaust!? You are undeniably one of the most delusional, self-inflated, egotistical people (perhaps on the globe) that would ever put a thought that compares what the Jewish People endured in with, on a equal level none the less, what homosexual people are going through, implying that the gay people are still in Concentration Camps or for that matter ever have been in anything much less comfortable than a new pair of shoes! You!, don’t talk anymore! Maybe never! For crying out loud read something besides road signs and the “Style” section of the Newspaper.

      95. They killed people who worked to defend Jews, or other dissenters. There wasn’t this wholesale program to LOOK for believers. Jews being the only believers in God, that the Nazis took special care to arrest and put in the camps.
        Some Jews and their allies, WERE DISGUISED AS Christians to ESCAPE the Nazi pogrom.
        Your ignorance about that, is unforgivable, really.
        And if not for a gay man, who’d been the team leader at Bletchley Circle and built a forerunner of a computer to decode the Nazi’s Enigma code, your ass might not exist at all.
        And the rest of the world might still be under Nazi control.
        And Britain punished a hero, so deplorably, for being gay.
        Which led to his suicide at age 42.
        A Christian like you will express your religious teaching, but RECENT history got by you.
        WTH, Bradley?
        Maybe if you’d known of heroics like that, and knew other gay people who knocked down walls, and did so much for others, and were such positive role models, you wouldn’t have gotten on your knees the way you have, for the handlers who police your every move.
        And certainly aren’t going to let you associate with positive gay people, and evidently, you don’t want to except to proselytize.

      96. Very few and many different people were killed, but not like the People of God! There wasn’t a focused attempt made to kill gays and extinguish them as a whole people!

      97. Gay people WERE murdered by the Nazis and put in concentration camps. I said that the push to use religious doctrine to make them not be gay anymore, and affect heterosexual behavior is another form of working to make gay people DISAPPEAR.
        That would be a way to continue to expect gay people to NOT be gay and control what gay people do.
        And in such a way, that’s unworkable, and frankly diabolical.
        Also, when a gay person does impart any experience with such attacks on their character, intentions and potential, the common retort is, “well at least you’re in America and not a Muslim country where they KILL YOU!”.
        So that threat, that continued religion induced paranoia and distrust of gay people, NO MATTER how responsible, contributing and kind, is real.
        And people who are looking for gay people to trip themselves, and if they don’t, are willing to trip up that gay person, have a very insane entitled attitude to do so.
        Always claiming their religious belief requires it.
        Where I volunteer, is a place YOU need to visit, and learn.
        So your insult is going to be taken for what it is.
        That you ARE too stupid to be able to handle what I said.
        And if you can’t read my comments, or insult them, I doubt you’re capable of reading the Bible, let alone simple documents like the Constitution and Bill of Rights.

      98. Apparently Regan did not fully read the blog I sent her, or just dismissed it as the rantings of a religious fanatic. I WAS asked to teach several times (the book of Daniel and have been asked to teach again on Ecclesiastes). I have also helped parents who have children who are SSA, to know that they are loved by God, but hey, since when does the truth matter?
        She is an angry activist. I don’t know her motivations, and I really don’t care. If she truly cares about me and just wants me to be happy, then I find her attitude condescending. Who says I am not happy? I certainly was not when I nearly killed myself. I certainly was not when I nearly sold my body for sex. I certainly was not when I was seeking love from men (confusing love with sex).
        If her motivation is far more sinister, then it won’t work. She can spout all the facts she wants. She only wants me to stray from my Lord and is angry that I won’t and I took steps to make sure I stay in Him. I have to question why. Is there an ulterior motive? She will deny it and probably call me delusional. Been called worse.

      99. I did read it. And you were repetitious and said absolutely nothing new that I haven’t heard that was already applied to gay people.
        And you opened the door and expressed YOUR anger at gay people you felt had abandoned you when you felt you needed them the most.
        You helped children who are SSA, and why are you so sure of that?
        Dismissing me as angry, is a cheap shot.
        Very cheap.
        Being suicidal, nearly prostituting yourself, looking for love in a way you were told was wrong, and in the wrong places?
        Bradley, how is that a GAY thing, and not something that many people who have been given the wrong messaging go through?
        But you are told to blame being gay (and/or) the devil.
        But the same thing happens to heterosexuals, right?
        So why does being gay get blamed, but being heterosexual does not?
        Sounds like for gay people it’s a stereotype and expected of all gay people if they don’t follow the Christian path.

        What I’m trying to impart to you, isn’t questioning whether you’re happy now or not.
        But that what the Christian’s idea of what gay people do to be happy, and what heterosexuals do, are different things and the standards aren’t fair, let alone workable.
        And you’re working over other young gay people with the same standards, before they’ve even had a chance to understand their orientation fully and what it means and what to do with it.
        You’re in denial of the damage that’s been done by that.
        And you’re acting as if it’s worked well, when it hasn’t.
        Your cheap shot also is a dishonest way of pretending there isn’t any reason to be.
        I’m an EFFECTIVE activist.
        Do you think gay people would have ever been able to get married, or serve openly in the military and so on, if YOU and your ilk been at the wheel?

        Talking about me, without me. Yeah, that’s another way to shun and treat another person in a way you wouldn’t accept if I treated you that way.
        You’re actually demonstrating how mean you can be, when you can’t articulate what’s more important here.
        And if you’re trying to defend what a reasoned Christian you are, you’re doing a bang up job.
        And in no way now, could I expect any more of you.

      100. You have helped parents of GLBT children to know they are loved their kids not so much so she is exactly on point.

      101. Hello Bradley,
        God knows what is in our hearts and we do not. If we did then walking perfectly as Christ did would be done already and even He dealt with the temptations His trials presented to him. We struggle because we lose our focus and allow the world to distract us. When we, by the grace and strength of God, are able to put a particular sin to death we always seem to find another waiting behind it. We must always remember we are in His story for His glory, not ours for ours and it takes work to remember that.
        In a blog or email format it is easier to order your thinking and reasoning to say what needs saying as you have time to look at what it is you are preparing to send all covered by prayer and thanksgiving for the opportunity to even converse with another.

        We were lost at one time, as if at sea, before the Truth was revealed to us, and we were pulled from the water. We now extend our hands to others in the water; to be the means by which God uses so they too can be saved.
        Remember always you are in the ark and look to the world with tears because of the lies that are binding so many of the people we know. Praise and prayer as we walk together carrying the light of truth, calling out into the darkness to for people to come, hear, confess, repent and accept Christ as Lord.

      102. Hi Bradley,
        I am inquiring on the gist of a conversation both you and Regan are having on another one of Matt’s articles.
        Since Matt went on a massive writing spree within the last couple of weeks I have no idea which article you both are (for lack of a better word) sparring.
        Which article is it that you two are having your discussion?

      103. Hi Mike! Reagan started sparing with me back in the article titled “The One Time I Was Almost Kicked Out Of My Church”, dated September 26, 2016. I had related a story how a church member, who knows of my homosexual past, was concerned that I may have gone back into it. She expressed outrage and went off on a tirade. Not knowing who she was, I made the mistake of replying.
        After a few posts and a comedic comment from me that she needed Xanax, I was instructed by the Holy Spirit to make no further comments because she is a fool (Proverbs 26:1-12)
        I saw that she left a brief comment in the article titled “Reviving Childlike Faith” dated October 10, 2016. The comment she made was that it was National Coming Out Day. I said to rant away. She did not reply.
        On the article titled “The Perilous Sin of Affirming Sin” dated November 2, 2016, she began her rants again. I made the comment that she needed a great big hug and lots of Xanax. That really set her off, accusing me of insulting her. I apologized, saying that I didn’t realize she had no sense of humor. She really became angry again. I tried calmly speaking to her, giving my testimony on why I had left the homosexual lifestyle. I was accused of sterotyping gays (even though I and everyone who I had been with lived that lifestyle). Another person got involved and exposed her as a potential fraud in being involved with crime scene photography.
        I then asked her to clear up the matter. We then began a dialog on my email. I do not fully trust her. She claims that she was raised in church, but shows no signs of a believer, just someone who has some knowledge. She seems only to care about gay issues, but not having the slightest clue on what a hell being gay is about. I can share with you the email dialog with you if you want. 🙂 I just want this to be over. She seems determined to have her say, and nobody is correct unless they believe everything she does.

      104. Hi Bradley,
        Yes, please send me a copy of the email(s) to me at Jeremiah160364 in yahoo.
        This way I can at least see what the discussion is.
        If you have not been following the conversation Regan and I have been having, it is all in this blog article’s comments. I did a count and we have had roughly 18 postings between the two of us. I am unsure as to when Matt will lock this article down from more comments but with your email and Regan’s email addresses a different conversation can ensue or at the very least the conversation can continue.
        If you read the conversations and disagree with anything I have stated, please let me know. Like all of followers of Christ, I am not all knowing, just growing.

      105. Every few times in my life have I read an “argument” as long or as detailed as the one above, that said absolutely nothing.

      106. No, it said a lot. It was over your head, that’s all. Better minds can deal with it. That’s all too.

      107. Simpleton, listen to me. Even if 15% of your brain functioned within normal perimeters and you had just graduated with an advanced degree in at out smartin
        me, you would still fail the class! Learn Your place!

      108. Bradley, if you were as interested in being a good person, let alone decent Christian, you wouldn’t be so amused by Bryan’s name calling and leading a serious discussion down the path that turned this forum into a mob mentality that’s not healthy between adults, let alone for a subject like this.

        You would have exercised some patience, and at least asked me the kinds of questions Joshua from Singapore did.
        He managed to comport himself decently, without the predictable scolding trap you fell right into.
        You never asked me if I believed in God. Not once.
        You didn’t ask me where my passion came from, you just asserted over and over that I’m angry, and mentioned several times that I needed to take Xanax.
        Bradley, at least I read your blog like you asked me to. What did you think I’d come away with from doing so?
        Your story is a familiar one. It has much of the same background as other gay people who have done the same thing you have.
        The crucial question is: why do you think you’re different, when thousands of years of Christian teaching isn’t going to change?
        You talk to me as if you didn’t mention at all that I was raised Christian, and spent time in temple with a close childhood friend who was Jewish.
        You didn’t acknowledge THAT at all.
        I didn’t need you to tell me God loves me.
        The point is, that I didn’t need you to scold me into loving God, either.
        In fact, it’s best not to talk to anyone that way.
        That is between me and God. It’s something I consider to be quite private and special.
        And now you’ve done something very unfortunate, instead of giving me a little room, like Joshua did, you got real mean, real fast, even when a comment wasn’t directed at you.
        Perhaps that’s who you really are.
        As is Bryan Matthews.
        I didn’t really want to judge you that way.
        But now, you didn’t give me much choice.

      109. Regan why don’t you go find a man instead of hanging around like one of THOSE girls who always want to be around gays?

      110. I totally agree with your statement. I also have suffered undo suspicions from overly “religious” type Christians and suffered terrible verbal labeling and accusations. Funny, the very people who were supposedly called by the Lord to be spiritual leaders, ended up divorcing, and their son is now in the gay lifestyle.
        This “accountability teaching” which causes people to find a so-called “spiritual mentor” to be their “accountability” partner is truly unbiblical, and causes true believers to be dependent upon man rather than Christ, and usually are signs of a “cultist” mentality.
        This I experienced a great deal back in the 90’s within the Wimber, Vineyard movement, which had many “Catholic” practices, since it was ecumenical in it’s foundation, and totally not founded by sound Biblical doctrine.
        I left the group because the Lord taught me a better way. Total Dependence upon HIM, and NOT man.

      111. Thanks for you comment, Cal. I was wondering why I kept getting slammed for keeping whatever my relationship with God or not, something that’s between God and myself.
        It’s been hard to trust the hard sell tactics employed much of the time. Very few days go by when there isn’t casual street preaching, and prosyletizers setting up in public.
        Most churches are quite prominent, and you figure if you want to get with God and like minded people, there are so many thousands of ways to do it.
        And yet, no matter what was said about reading the Bible, and having one: the order to keep reading it is the same.
        The attitude you get is that it’s not “good enough”, there has to be some kind of demonstration of piety to satisfy all the different ways a Christian will come at you to be “accountable”.
        It’s exhausting really.
        To keep it up, has to take on the characteristics of obsession.
        But the more I experience gay folks who aren’t restrained by their spiritual lives, the more I find a very rich and bracing way of navigating negative social standards.
        We are diverse in life. Human beings most of all have the gift of adapting. Which seems very restrained by religious mores, unless the religion also adapts.

    3. Hey Bradley, Im blown away that you had to experience that guilt trip in such an innocence expression. More than anything I think the touch to your neighbor challenged the status quo of masculinity. I honestly think the same guy who questioned you about it is dealing with repressed same-sex attraction & just took it out on you. Stand strong in your intentions in what you do. Certain ways we touch each other as men has nothing to do with sexual orientation but are just blatant ways to communicate & share love. Don’t let someone’s fragile masculinity discredit your good intentions. More power to you man!

      1. He isn’t gay or repressing. I would know (have a knack for those things). He was just concerned because he knows of my past and how bad it was. He had every right to be concerned to make sure that I hadn’t lapsed (I have been celibate 12 years now). It was a big deal and I took steps to ensure that I would have another 12 years and I want 12 more after that, if the Lord hasn’t called me home. Also I felt no guilt. Guilt implies that I did something wrong, which I did not. Yes I am not afraid to touch another man, but not to his detriment, especially if it can be taken the wrong way. How would that further the Kingdom of God?

      1. You mustn’t let yourself get discouraged. I became very bitter and angry because of what happened in church years ago, so much so that I wouldn’t step inside a church except on Easter and Christmas, and then only to be seen as one of the faithful. Mercifully the Father sent me the stroke and wiped out my mind so I could come back to Him, not knowing why I was angry.
        Sure learning that I was gay twice in my life was very hard, but it made me a better person, and I learned a lot about forgiveness. I was initially angered about the incident at church due to my own pride in being celibate, but my friend, my brother knows about how bad my past was, and was making sure that I hadn’t gone back to it.
        Not everyone is a bigoted homophobe, despite the claims of others. Some people genuinely care, like my friend did. I urge you to go back, if only for a sense of community.

    4. I do understand what you went through, and I will disagree with you on the point of asking “others” to keep you accountable. Christ and His Holy Spirit will keep you accountable, leaning upon others is a fleshly trap, because it keeps you from being dependent upon the Lord.
      Your heart was not guilty of any hidden motives, but with my many experiences with “self-righteous” persons, that person, who chided you, though probably had good intentions was in fact truly out of order. It was “fear” that caused them to do that, and a sign they were spiritually immature.
      You can know for yourself “if” your heart was in the right place, and it seemed it was.
      Yes, other Christians will cause undo pain upon us who came out of the gay life, but many that do so, are truly hypocrites themselves and hold themselves in high esteem, while they forget who they are in Christ and what the Lord brought them out of.
      Maturity in Christ makes you more aware of your true state, that you truly are a sinner saved by the Grace of God through the Faith of Christ. And nothing of yourself is involved, it truly is ALL from Him and by Him. And that causes you to walk with far more understanding of others and their struggles, and to be more compassionate and patient, and to Love one another as HE has LOVED US.
      True maturity in Christ makes you realize YOU are NOTHING and HE is EVERYTHING….
      Unfortunately multitudes within the “organized, government institutional Church” breeds self-reliant, self-satisfied, self-righteous hypocrites and are governed by “cult” like leaders/teachers.

      1. While I do understand what you say, I also do not trust myself. The only way God could stop me is to strike me down. I have a while left on this earth. I want to spend it remaining pure.

  3. Your honesty is to be commanded Matt.
    Love what you write, this article and others.
    Thank you very much.
    Keep the good fight as the reward is incomprehensible but promised by Jesus who cannot be doubted as even history written by no believers speaks of him

  4. Oh Matt, such powerful truth: We overcome when we “stop faithlessly settling into a passive, victim mentality, confess our sins, and, by the strength the Spirit supplies, fight them with unprecedented ferocity!” Keep up that good fight, and bless you for sharing both the struggle and the victory.

  5. Since when did this become a forum for activists to spew their hate? I am not sorry that I related what happened in church, but I am sorry I ever gave the Angry Activist any bit of energy. She does not believe in free speech, nor does she want me to pursue my own life in God’s eyes. I wish her well (she should really consider Xanax though).

    1. Free speech doesn’t isolate you from criticism. You obviously don’t understand the concept. When someone criticizes sexism, racism, or in your case homophobia they aren’t preventing your free speech. They are actually countering it with their own free speech.

      1. Free speech is one thing, prosletizing (did I spell that right, getting tired, it’s a stroke thing) is another. She says I am wrong, that I have betrayed other gays for not supporting the gay life style. That is not free speech. It is marxism.

      2. No it is rightly calling out your homophobia. You sound like the racists who whine when someone challenges their hatred.

      3. Nope you have internalized homophobia that makes you hate the fact that you are gay and now you take it out on those who are leading the life you never could

      4. Some people don’t want to be gay. It’s a big world, with lots of points of view. Screaming *homophobia* at everybody who doesn’t embrace gay ideology is getting old. As Dieter used to say on SNL, “your story has become tiresome.”

      5. There is a difference between deciding you don’t want to be gay and telling others they are mandated not to have relationships. I agree if one chooses to be celibate and not prescribe it for all other gay people no homophobia there. Though saying someone doesn’t want to be gay is like saying someone doesn’t want to be black.

      6. No, it isn’t the same thing as being black. You have a habit of telling people what is. Very controlling!

      7. Actually it is. It is an immutable characteristic that is why ex-gay groups like Exodus have failed. So sad that science is on my side.

      8. No, color isn’t the same as gender, and nationality isn’t the same as sexual orientation either.
        But historically, people have been mistreated for any one of most of those things.
        The point being, it’s wrongful to do so, WHETHER it’s orientation, gender or color.
        And those most mistreated for their singular distinctions, shouldn’t have to keep defending their right to be treated the way anyone else expects to be.

      9. Being gay isn’t an ideology. For God’s sake, you can’t even make up your damn minds, and you NEVER hit the right definition of sexual orientation to begin with.
        So when you miss the target, what you aim to do backfires too!

      10. Umm, great effort but still so far off! I’m guessing that you were attempting to psychologize Bradley and as I have studied and made a career as a psychologist I feel that I have to let you know that I can’t find, not even one, use of the correct term for what I think you’re wanting to say. Then you have used symptoms and confused the condition to which they apply. Please stop! Use things with which you have at least a nodding acquaintance.

      11. Ummmm since the APA doesn’t consider being gay a mental illness I highly doubt you know anything about psychology.

      12. Humm, since you apparently see no need for anything other than putting nonsensical tag word as a comprehensive comment, I doubt you know you’re name.

      13. Well no, not really.
        In the early 50’s for example, Dr. Benjamin Clark and his wife, studied hundreds of black children of all ages, who had lived under Jim Crow and it’s incessant negative messaging.
        They used dolls of various shades to discern what children thought negatively or positively of people according to their skin color. There have been variations on this study to gauge what effect systemic bigotry has on young people.
        The work of the Clark, was instrumental in the Brown vs. Brd of Ed decision, and school segregation was declared illegal by SCOTUS in 1954.
        The reason I brought that up, is it’s very possible to have an intense dislike for your ethnic, or sexual orientation grouping.
        Because there are pockets of social networks harsher than others depending on one’s distinction as black, or gay…as you know, one can be both.
        When you participate in the kinds of programming, that initiated and implemented the negative messaging, then you’re a part of the problem.
        I’ve learned about a kind of psychology in gay folks like yourself, I’ve recognized in other people, depending on how they were raised.
        I used to know a teenager, that a one time said he hated being Jewish. He didn’t exactly say he hated other Jews, but since he was raised in Soviet Russia, and the repression of Jews remained harsh, his outburst was painful to hear, but understandable.
        Some blacks, raised under Jim Crow, have been known to hate being black.

        But of course, the attributes of color, or sexual orientation, are not the problem.
        The systemic prejudice is.
        And THAT is what any normal and decent person would work against.
        However, Bradley, you’re not defending the sexual orientation of being gay, nor are you able to morally, or intellectually reconcile doing so.
        There is nothing wrong with being gay, but your chosen faith tells you otherwise.
        So yes, you don’t think you’re, but what you think and what you DO, are two different things.
        And your DEEDS will matter more.

      14. Madam,
        I concede that before my Lord delivered me from being gay, I wanted so much for it to be ok with Him! I thought about the things that this group would say and studied the Bible pleading to discover where acting on those homosexual desires was de rigueur!
        Now I am very thankful that God lifted the scales from my eyes! I can see now how extensively vast the devil’s deception really stretches! Also, I am able to see how explicitly dark, evil and lavish that life was to me and still is to those who have never been given a tiny glancing view of what it’s like inside the vortex. I was given a rare thing, one night I stood face to face with satan and we talked for just a few moments. So there’s no hate in me at all for all who are either still inside or outside still struggling with SSA!

      15. First thing the name Man-lambda should have given you a clue that I am a guy. There is no evil in being gay. I have been with my husband over 28 years. As for the hate part the only one struggling with their gay orientation is you Sir. You have internalized that hate.

    2. Bradley,
      Any site where there’s some people talking about or sharing their own persuasion of the God of All! Furthermore, to expatriate Christ Jesus as God’s Only Son, tends to engender the monomaniacs of the world to reinaugurate that Xerox tabulation of their apparent bête noire. At times one could circa the schlick vaudevillian, were it not due to the unambiguousness in this exhaustive, blind hatred for the Truth. It’s perpetuum aggrandized by today’s society, with such vigor, that satan no longer having to quarterback with the same tenacity.
      As there always must be one in the crowd that is insistent, armed with the delusion of their supremacy, that without fail must adduce how another person has, in circus fashion, revealed that the poor soul has no knowledge of simple terms…oh like “criticism”…

    3. When it became a forum for gay people who continue to foment stereotypes, and misrepresentation of homosexuality, that’s why.
      I do believe in free speech, I haven’t advocated that you couldn’t speak your mind about loving God, and Christ.
      I haven’t advocated that you be deleted, banned and shut down.
      Remember that Christians have had ample opportunity to speak their minds, have influenced a great deal that’s had negative and destructive outcomes for women and gay people in particular.
      And gay people have NOT had the same opportunity to be open, truthful and free to from threat, for a long time.
      You have been quite tone deaf all along to that.
      Calling me “angry activist” and to consider using Xanax, is exactly the kind of contempt that comes out eventually for what YOU consider not toeing the same line you think I should.
      I told you, I was raised in church, AND temple. I know the Bible quite well, and the constant scold that I need to, is also a show of your assuming I know nothing about Christians or being one, when I do.
      Only to glad that you pursue YOUR life.
      Just don’t come at anyone else, specifically gay young people.
      Because if you want to pursue YOUR life, then gay young people who have yet to, deserve to pursue theirs without the kind of mistake in judgement that’s often what Christians do.

      1. People like Ducasse are only meant to distract you, frustrate you, make you mad. Don’t let them get under your skin. Spend your energy where it’ll be fruitful, not wasted! :o)

  6. Thanks for your honesty. I haven’t been keeping up with your posts…partly out of forgetting partly out of not wanting to be convicted and partly out of jealousy. Yup…jealous of your walk with Christ and jealous that you have such a supportive church. No one…well few really care about me and my spiritual well-being…count your blessings…

      1. If you need anything – to talk, moral support, a friend – anything at all, I can be reached. God brought me though so much, even in my darkest hour and when I was filled with so much rage at Christians. He was there for me. He will be there for you, and I will be too.

  7. I think that for Regan, she did experience many traumatic things in her life because of the evil of people doing to her. We may not understand all of it cos suffering these traumatic things can be so painful. In releasing her anger here, i just want to acknowledge that it’s true that if there were reprehensible evil done to her, that it’s an evil deed done by evil people. We all share in it, either sinning against others or had others sin against us. So sorry to hear of what happened to Regan but it’s true that Christ did suffer enormously too and i believe He can understand at least. But people may feel He can’t and it’s ok. Perhaps, a lot of supposed Christians had done evil to Regan and for that we, as Christians, would apologize for those evil. (writing from Singapore)

    1. Thank you, Joshua.
      During a time of serious and painful illness and professional challenges, my husband was very abusive, and sabotaged the few options I had left to make something of myself. The thing about domestic abuse is, the perpetrator can hide this from other people and play the part of a very different person in public.
      My in laws, on a visit, revealed quite profoundly in what way they approved and enabled the abuse and pretty much, ganged up on me too.
      They never miss church.
      And clearly, they learned nothing about compassion in a person’s time of need and pain, that I had no choice in.
      During the time of anti gay equality political action, I appealed to many powerful churches and other houses of worship and that their political influence would do a lot of good if directed a laws concerning domestic violence.
      No sale.
      Wouldn’t even have the conversation. So, after many years of trying to get the attention of such powerful voices in the country, it was clear that hating on gay people was more important than changing the laws, that would save the lives of those in domestic violence situations.
      This is why it’s more than a suspicion of just how tone deaf religious communities are to OBVIOUS problems. “I’ll pray for you” or “you need Jesus” rings extremely hollow, when what a person needs is the action put towards keeping gay people from marrying, towards laws that would give people more time in jail to give their victims more time to escape.
      Certain Christians aren’t about to suffer anything, for the sake of what’s right towards another human being’s safety.
      Indeed, much in the Bible supports abuse of those whose social status is vulnerable. Such as slaves and women.
      But I have come to the defense of others who are also very vulnerable. And that vulnerability and social status is exploited by Christians so that gay people are more socially accepted if they assert how religious they are and at the expense of their identity and equal needs in any given community.
      You see how I’ve gotten treated for that.
      And not a lot has been done here to make me feel or think any more or less of how exceptionally hostile anti gay sentiment is.
      To be fair, and fortunately, I know so many other Christians who would put people like Matt to shame. They ARE better, more morally and intellectually honest people.
      I know that.
      Which is why I haven’t thrown up my hands completely. But those Christians tend to be the ones fully understanding of what gender actually is. And sexual orientation.
      And had the capacity to reconcile it with their love for and belief in God.
      I never said I was AGAINST God and Christ.
      But I know ABUSE when I see it, and will call it out for what it is.
      It can be subtle, just as some forms of racism are too.
      And I don’t deserve to be treated badly for knowing the difference.

  8. I guess this is one of those issues that is a “work in progress”, as more gays come into (or back to) church, we all have to learn new ways of relating to each other and holding one another accountable. Let’s all be patient with the imperfections of others, as this is not always an easy or clear issue, and it takes time for people to adapt to new changes in society.

  9. How expected! My comment back to Regan, after it was him that asked, has been deleted even before I could finish writing it! See you can’t talk about how people that engage in Same Sex ARE GOING TO HELL IF THEY DON’t REPENTand stay out of that lifestyle designed for satan and his group! They love it and want to make us love it too. They want to keep our minds tuned into another station that reports, ” God made you a faggot Bryan, so He must want you to be happy and of course He wants that sex addiction pleasured! Don’t listen to all those haters! Heaven is yours!”
    The facts are that I was gay most of my life and I wanted it all the time! After Christ offered salvation to me through His Blood, I started to see that , just as I had said these things to,


    What a bunch of lies! Most gays are loud and feminine, screaming about how hot a guy is in a crowded mall, that’s when they are not having their Pride Prance with fully naked men doing it all in doorways, hallways, on the grass cut in a park, etc.
    Let’s all cry for the hardships that Gays go through, it can’t be easy to find a place to park when guys are doing it in the parking lots.

    Oh they won’t stop having sex if you are going to a shop or walking down the street with your kids! See how much gays are bullied?!

  10. About to get all religious here, and I’m not sorry if this offends you who are reading this. I had an epiphany the other night, and have had what I was thinking about confirmed by others who are dealing with SSA (Same Sex Attraction). The issue at hand is the topic of the Ten Commandments. We all know the story, how they were given by God, written in stone, to Moses. This is detailed in the book of Exodus 20 of the Bible. I won’t go through them all, because that is not the issue.

    Jesus Christ came and expounded on the Ten Commandments, that it wasn’t just about obeying the letter of the law, but of the spirit. This is detailed in Matthew 5:21-28. This applies to ALL the Commandments. But what about the tenth one? For those of you who do not know, the tenth Commandment from God is “Thou shalt not covet” as detailed in Exodus 20:17. The meaning that is applied to this is to not be jealous over what your neighbor has. This is regarded as relating to material possessions, and can be easily dismissed.

    But what was Christ saying about the spirit of the Law concerning coveting? This applies to us who are SSA, especially: we NOT are to covet the natural attraction that straights have towards women. So much sadness, so many mistakes in my life could have been avoided if I had just understood this commandment.

    I got with my wife, because I thought it would make me straight. It didn’t. I was coveting what I saw in other men who are straight, and I paid for it in marital strife. God did bless our union with children, and I will not disrupt family harmony by telling them, as it would be self-serving, to relieve some kind of guilt I feel about not being upfront with my wife. Guilt is a tool of the enemy to drive a wedge between man and God. I love my wife, and will do anything to protect her, even if it makes me uncomfortable.

    Matthew 19:12 in the Bible says “For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother’s womb: and there are some eunuchs, which were made eunuchs of men: and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven’s sake. He that is able to receive it, let him receive it.”

    A eunuch is one who does not reproduce, either naturally or a man-made eunuch (although this rarely happens anymore). Because I was SSA, and didn’t understand this Commandment, I coveted what my brother (all normal men) had: attraction to women.

    There is wisdom when Jesus said it was good not to marry (Matthew 19:10). If we who are SSA covet what a straight man has, then we are not seeking the advancement of God’s Kingdom. I urge anyone who is SSA to not covet what a straight man has and seek the advancement of God’s Kingdom.

    Thus ends the theological discussion for today.

    1. I think you have some serious misunderstanding of coveting with respect to SSA – aka Homosexual immorality in the bible. Your coveting what straight men had was NOT coveting. It was your real, God-born self seeing what is righteous in the eyes of God, and your God-born self trying hard, with the help of the Holy Spirit, to turn away from your sin of SSA.

      Instead, your explanation depicts the deceptions that Satan comes in with extreme subtlety. He convinced you that that wanting to be straight is the same as coveting. But it isn’t. It is only wanting to live a Christian life, one who fears God and gives him glory.

      We need to be careful attributing to God the work of Satan, or the work of Satan as the work of God. Attributing your desire to be straight as a violation of the covet commandment is coming close to mis-attributing the works of God or Satan. This act is an unforgivable sin of blasphemy of the Holy Spirit, the one Christ himself declared unforgivable.

      I pray you will find your peace in Christ, and see the truth in this deception, and that the Holy Spirit will fill you with peace.

      1. Hi mjoinsd! Sorry for the delay in respoding to your comment (I went to a funeral several hours from my home).
        SSA is difficult at best. Wanting to live a Chistian life, in fear of God, is one thing. But for many years I did not. I was angry at God, angry at Christians, angry at myself. I kept telling myself ‘If only I wasn’t gay, the God would accept me.’ I thought of myself as God’s bastard child, his pet faggot. I had no relationship with Him.
        One of the things I had to accept is that you can not pray the gay away. I have known only one gay man who has been ‘cured’. But in that cure he has no sex drive at all; in fact the thought of being with either makes him nausous. I have been celibate 12 years (and I pray for 12 more). I have been with my wife for 19 years. After all this time, if it was God’s will that I would be delivered from this affliction, He would have done so.
        But in all this time (30 years or so) the delivery hasn’t happened. I wanted so to be straight; but was that what God wanted? Did He want me to give up one form of lust for another? Or did He want me to work for His kingdom, encouraging younger people who are SSA and have not engaged. Letting them know that the Father loves them.
        I have a weakness, but that weakness has become the Father’s strength. I allowed Satan to exploit my weakness for his nefarious purposes, and it nearly killed me. I sought to have a wife, but only to satisy my own lusts – I wanted what I saw my brothers had. It was something I did not have (and still don’t), and that is fine. Like any addiction, I was not satisfied, because I did not know the love of God.
        I have a friend at church who is a recovering methamphetimine addict. He has been clean five years. He loves God and is very faithful, but not a day goes by where he doesn’t feel the pull of the drugs. The pull of the drugs is a natural reaction of a fleshly body, not what his spirit wants. I am SSA, my fleshly body wants one thing and my spirit wants another. Just because I am SSA does not mean I love God less. It means that I have a human weakness that He can use to further His Kingdom.

      2. Thank you so much for your candid response, Bradley. I understand exactly what you are saying. The reality is God’s time is so much different from ours.

        I have my struggles, too. Mine are lack of love for others, from an outward perspective. Internally, I deeply love everyone around me. My biggest lack of love is toward those I don’t know, those who offend me on the road especially.

        I also am acutely aware of what resides in my heart, and my perception of other’s perception of me is that I am a horrible person. I am utterly mean to telemarketers, offering terrorist threats and other offensive words.

        I pray daily for God to take that from me. I know it will happen in his time. IT is simply a matter of trust. Trust we cannot develop on our own, but only trust that God gives us the ability to exercise.

        I invite you to my ministry site: Look at the bottom two articles under features. There is one about “Proper Praying” that may be of comfort to you.

        It has been 12 years since I wrote those pieces. God did deliver me from anger and bitterness just as I was on the verge of a very violent retribution series of acts Satan had planted in me. My spiritual life has not been easy in that time. My faith in Christ, and my trust in God has grown exponentially, but my own behavior has not grown with that level of faith.

        Your SSA is no worse than my internal and external aggression. God will forgive it all. We need to, as Christians, understand that Satan will continue to attack us at our weakest. For you it is SSA. For me, anger and rage. We are both unclean and unworthy.

        But in Christ, we do have victory.

        Maybe if you and I stop trying to fix this on our own, and just let God fix it, maybe then we can be more victorious!

        One other point on God’s time. I am 56 years old. When I was 17, I knew I wanted a baby girl. God finally granted me one after two failed marriages, and in my third (and hopefully final), when I was 53 years old.

        I was about to give up on it. My wife and I were talking vasectomy for me, because we wanted to get her off the pill. Before we could move in any direction, God saw fit to give me what I had been wanting and praying for over 35 years to have.

        God’s time is not like our time. He doesn’t understand long or short as we do. To him a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years is like a day.

        I pray you will find my ministry website and find comfort in my writings. Please do find the contact email address and feel free to contact me directly. I would love to carry on this discussion and encouragement offline.


  11. Been there, done that. Thanks for writing this.

    Funny, isn’t it, how when we are moving toward our strongest moments of faith, the greatest sins abound in our lives. Well, not haha funny, but you know what I mean.

    The two times I was approached and executed church discipline on me, both times I was increasingly involved in church activities and ministry work. I was asked to drop all extra activities, but welcomed to services. Membership was not revoked.

    Both times, it was sins of the flesh, unequally yoking myself to an unbelieving women, whom I ultimately married and eventually was divorced. My third/current wife is not unequally yoked with me. It has gone much better, and now I even have a little girl of my own. Waited 35 years for this blessing.

    Yet today, even now, as I have read the bible dozens of times in recent years, Satan is heavily attacking me on many fronts. Yet I stay faithful, resisting the heinous sins I formerly was part of, and despite my untamed tongue, because I fear the words in Hebrews 6:

    Hebrews 6:4-6 New International Version (NIV)

    It is impossible for those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the coming age and who have fallen away, to be brought back to repentance. To their loss they are crucifying the Son of God all over again and subjecting him to public disgrace.

    So I simply stay in the word. The struggles increase day over day, but I am good to know I have victory in Christ, even when (especially when) I don’t “feel” it.

    “Feelings” with respect to faith is pure fictional heresy. Faith has nothing to do with you you ‘feel’. Emotions are unreliable indicators of faith.

  12. Pingback: Homepage
  13. Pingback: trucking jobs
  14. Pingback: lawyer
  15. Pingback: m88so
  16. Pingback: roofing contractor
  17. Pingback: Drive with Uber
  18. Pingback: Google
  19. Pingback: Google
  20. Pingback: Google
  21. Pingback: see it here

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *