Masculinity Verses Sainthood
When I was between five and seven years old, my mom asked me to help clean
up the kitchen, and I responded with, "That's a girl's job." She replied,
"But I don't have a daughter, so until I get one you have to do your part."
I perceived her meaning to be "I not only need a daughter, but I want a
daughter more than a son." As a result I pursued domestic activities and
avoided masculine ones because I feared her rejection.
I was not very macho in high school. I was a failure at sports, and the
guys called me a fem and a fag. I didn't know what those words meant, but
I did know they were bad and described what I was.
The root of deception had begun to develop in my life regarding who I was
as a person and as a male. It was the voice of the deceiver who said,
"You're just not like other boys. You and your dad have nothing in common.
You are so different, it's proof that you are gay."
Bitterness began to grow in my life. I was hurt by my peers and hurt by my
own misperceptions. I nurtured and cherished those hurts and they grew big
and ugly. They built incredible walls between other men and myself. I
said, "Straight men are all alike, insensitive, rude creeps. I want
nothing to do with them." It was this attitude that catapulted me into the
gay subculture, looking for some kind of role model.
I've always viewed myself as a loving, caring, and sensitive person. But I
grew up in a docile family and in a Christian community where "Thou shalt
not become angry" was the eleventh commandment. That meant that hurts and
problems were never dealt with. They were just pushed under for the sake
of maintaining peace.
I allowed others to walk all over me and influence me to act against the
values I had. Instead of acting as an adult with other adults, I was
always the compliant child, doing what a "parent" told me to do. It
created a deep anger in me for being so wishy-washy. And it created an
even deeper hostility toward those who walked on me.
In counseling I've found, to my shock, that my major involvement in
homosexual behaviour has been due to a need to release my built up tension
and anger. It was through the homosexual act that I was able to break out
of the "nice boy" role. Instead of giving, I could take. Instead of
serving, I could control and manipulate and get away with it.
When I deal with others as my equal, and when I stand up for myself and
what I believe, a lot of my anger dissipates. At other times anger is
dealt with when I forgive someone who has hurt me. And at still other
times, having some new perspective on a situation eliminates a good deal of
my angry feelings.
I've also had to deal with anger towards God When I first purposed to give
my life to Him, including my homosexuality, I went for quite a while
without being bothered by homosexual issues. But then, I fell again,
"God," I screamed. "I thought You had taken care of this, Why can't you
Tears flowed, and frustration, anger and confusion poured out. I remember
praying many times that God would allow an accident so I would become
quadriplegic and no longer be able to go out and fall.
That would have stopped the behaviour, but it wouldn't have been the
solution to the real problem. The solution involves learning about God's
true character. His love, forgiveness, and grace ... and a lot about right
I also had to learn that anger does not equal sin. The Bible says, "Be
angry, but do not sin ..." (Ephesians 4:26). This means developing
responsible ways of communicating my feelings and releasing my anger.
I've been in conflict because of the two images I've been offered to
"measure up" to. Jesus has been presented as the Lamb led to slaughter,
the ultimate servant, the paramount martyr (although I run a close second).
The world, on the other had, has said, "Be macho."
That involves emotional or physical dominance. It also doesn't allow for
any show of emotions, let alone emotional bonding. Being tough and using
people is the standard. There's no communication other than a few grunts
(given in reference to good food or hot women).
In my spirit, I know that God has made me as a man, to be masculine and to
be a Christian. But these images pose my conflict. They are like oil and
water. They don't mix. When I'm right with the Lord and being sensitive,
caring, and loving, I don't feel masculine. Ironically, in the past, I
have felt masculine when I've been abusive, crude, and insensitive, that
is, involved in homosexual behaviour.
A sense of who I am as a man has been coming as I learn to express
strength, anger, self-control, and assertiveness as reflections of God's
For instance, as a waiter I have to cope with customers who complain about
their food. In the past, I would practically grovel at their feet,
apologizing profusely even though the problem might not be my fault.
Now I'm better at saying, at least internally, it's not my fault. I don't
take responsibility for all the things that go wrong, and I'm standing up
for myself more consistently.
In relating to men at church, I push myself to overcome feelings of
intimidation. I will go to events like a fellowship dinner by myself, and
if there's a circle of men talking, I'll go up and join the conversation.
This is breaking down the myth that I'm so different. Plus, I'm
discovering that these men don't fulfil the stereotypes I had of
masculinity. They have individual strengths and weaknesses, too. Straight
men are not all alike.
I didn't know then what I do now: that I desperately need communion with
God and fellowship in the Body of Christ. In developing relationships that
provide valid means of sharing and touching, I am getting my legitimate
needs for love met in a Christian context.
In those early days waves of loneliness would wash over me. "I don't want
sex," I would think, "I just want someone to hold me and be close." But it
always set me up for a fall. My efforts to repress those feelings were
futile because they were based in very real needs for love and
companionship. Those needs were not put within me to isolate me from God
and the Body, but to draw me to them.
Believing that I have been created in God's image as a man has given me new
eyes to see myself and others. I'm not as bound by the old ways of viewing
myself as I was. The new as come! (II Corinthians 5:17)
If I am made in God's image, then He is the source of my identity. If sin
separates me from that source, then I begin to look to others and to things
to define who I am and who I should become. That distorts my identity.
Then I have to go back to Isaiah 51:1:
"Hearken to me, you who pursue deliverance, you who seek the Lord; Look to
the rock from which you were hewn and to the quarry from which you were
For further information about homosexuality or about other areas of sexual
brokenness, please contact:
LOVE IN ACTION
G.P.O. Box 1115
ADELAIDE SA 5001
Phone (08) 371 0446
This article is reprinted by permission from
P O Box 33039
Seattle WA 98133-0039
MINISTRY TO HOMOSEXUALS
Database Listing - Ministry To
Christian Resources on Homosexuality on the web
These documents are free from BelieversCafe.com
the complete christian resource site with more than 5000 webpages.