When Someone at Your Church Says, “I’m Gay!” “I’m Lesbian!”
Things to Remember –
1. No one is born gay, and no one chooses to be gay or lesbian. Because of relational brokenness in families and among peers, some people experience emotional needs that they try to meet in ungodly ways. Many of them are uncomfortable with their own gender; later, they discover they are attracted to others of the same sex, but this is not their choice. Acting on it, however, is.
2. Change is possible. Even going back to the first-century church, the apostle Paul wrote to former homosexuals in the Corinthian church, “and such were some of you” (1 Cor. 6:11).
3. Because we live in a fallen world, we are all broken. Many people in our churches are sexually broken-victims of incest, pornography and masturbation addicts, and compulsive sex addiction. Homosexuality is only one form of brokenness.
4. Homosexuality grows out of broken relationships and is healed in healthy relationships, especially same-sex relationships. This is one of the reasons it is essential for recovering gays and lesbians to be actively involved in the church, because this is where they can find healthy, God-honoring friendships. Their homosexuality is not contagious!
5. Treat them with respect like you would anyone else. They are people made in the image of God for whom Christ died-they are not their sexuality. Many people trying to come out of the gay and lesbian lifestyle expect to find respect and acceptance only in the gay and lesbian community. Finding it in church is immensely healing to their souls.
6. Accept them where they are, just as Jesus did. Choose to accept the person, but not sinful behavior. People don’t change unless they experience the grace of acceptance first. But once they know they are loved and accepted, many of them are willing to do what it takes to live a life of holiness.