Tag Archives: christians

Labels

One day Brendon brought up that someone had made a negative comment to someone else because of their sexuality at work. I assumed that someone had said something about him. I wanted him to know that I was there for him and we let it go. It came up again only to find out that it was aimed at me. A good friend of Brendon’s that also works were we work asked who was running the machine and was answered with “Oh just a fag.” Brendon’s friend let Brendon know only for his friend to find out that I was Brendon’s boyfriend. His friend is very supportive but did not like the comment that was given. I was surprised to find out that the person who said it was the guy that I had talked to and wrote about in my post “Experience and Discussion”. In moving machines since starting where I work, I do work with this guy now fairly consistantly.

The first couple of days were hard for me as I knew there was a division between us. This is honestly the first time I have been called a fag since I came out. As I go back through the memories trying to recount all of this, it disheartens me. He did not have the guts to say it to my face but to backstab me for something I have no control over. As I thought about it more, he bullies me because he lacks confidence in himself. I possess something that he simply does not. I do not care about his opinions because they are simply that, opinions. He chooses to bully instead of trying to understand. Sexuality is a rough topic and with his brother also being gay I think he has a hard time wrestling with it.

Yesterday he actually made a comment to me. Our candles were pouring too hot; making them very soupy. He had took one of the candles out of the machine to check it.  He compared what the candles were looking like to cum and commented that I liked that. In response, “Who cares?” It is just another stab. Your label of “fag” will not stick to me. I accept myself and God who made me. My love is sincere and passionate. I have a wonderful boyfriend and we have a wonderful life together. I am not going to be pushed down by someone else who simply is not worth my time.

For right now, it is what it is. If it does get worse, I will let someone know. I will not let it get to being a “Code Black”. (At work, a code black is where someone calls that over that PA system that there is fighting or violence in the factory so people will know and break it up.)

It is the hardest for me because we are brothers in Christ. We are both Christians and yet he chooses to bully me. I will not respond with violence but that is why I am easy target. I will do my job and not hold a grudge but he is walking on a fine line to loosing his job if he does not stop what he is doing.

-Josh

Advertisements

The Future of the United States

With all of the events and talk when it comes to the upcoming election, I originally was not going to vote. I disagreed with both of the candidates on some level or another. Yesterday, the more I thought about it the more I realized that I needed to vote but that I was looking at the election in the wrong way. Gay men having the right to legally marry is something that I want to see happen. It should happen because it is the right thing to do. Do not oppress people and call them less than. I realized though that I was putting gay marriage above what was really important. One day gay marriage will be legal whether or not Obama makes it legal or someone else. What is more important is our economy.  Our economy should be the number one focus to voters. There are only so many elections before our country collapses. The government is deeper in debt. If the United States falls, it will hurt the rest of the world in our global economy. As I think about starting my business, I want the United States to be the same throughout my company’s existence. I do not want to be taken over by another country because our economy collapses and I loose everything in the process and then be told how to do business under the new government. Our debt is what is making our country weak. Personal debt and government debt. In my mind, gay rights can wait compared to potentially collapsing and losing all of the freedoms numerous people have lost their lives for. That is why I am voting for who I think will be the best for the economy. No other reason. It is a hard decision and as a country we can always clean up the smaller issues but we cannot clean up if we lose it all.

I do not believe that Obama is supporting gay marriage for the right reasons. It is just a piece of his campaign to get the votes he needs. It was well known the Romney opposes gay marriage so it is a shoe in for gay people and gay allies to vote for Obama. I do not think adding more debt to our country will help our economy but I also do not think that making the middle class pay more and letting the rich stay rich will help either. The middle class just does not have the money to live now let alone raising taxes in the future. I am torn. I will always be here to support and love gay men and I greatly dislike Romney’s lack of respect towards gay people. I will always be there for someone who is struggling with their sexuality but I think we need to wake up and see how weak the United States is really getting. We need to ask ourselves which candidate is best for our economy. I have not fully decided on who I will vote for. I will look at both Obama and Romney’s plans for the economy and whoever else is running for president and make my decision that way.

As the United States, we cannot have it all anymore. We have tried that and it has gotten us to where we are today. In this time of need, we need to cut back and nurse our ailing country back to health. What is essential and what is not? Let us deal with the essentials and as we get back on our feet, have more of the extras come back. When it comes to Romney and PBS, I disagree with Romney cutting it because it will only be a band-aid to the broken levy. It will not do much. At the same time though, we need to cut back on as much debt as we can and cutting funding to PBS will help that. If PBS is not funded by the government, I do not think it will be the end of PBS. PBS will have to tighten itself like every other company and business of the United States in our current recession. Though it is bad now, it will be better in the future. There will be people who are willing to support it just as there always have been. It is important to people of the United States and will be funded one way or another.

I was thinking about this as I was walking into work yesterday but if the economy collapses under Obama and Obama legalizes gay marriage, it will be futile for gay people. Christians will say that our collapse was because of gay people just like Sodom and Gomorrah. There are more factors than just gay people that causes a nation to collapse. I would never want to see this day.

There is still hope for the United States. There is always hope. May we be able to get through this rough time in our history and be able to stand strong on the other side of this. There is trials in life but they are there to make us stronger. Our economic state and state as a nation is teaching us something. Be willing enough to listen and learn.

-Josh


Family Wedding

I had the wonderful opportunity of going to a family wedding yesterday. One of my mom’s aunt’s daughters was getting married. I have no clue what her relation would be to me but my family went to be supportive. The wedding itself was beautiful and simple. It was the first wedding of my adult life. As a kid, I had been to other weddings but I was so little I could not remember them.

As I watched the ceremony unfold, I listened closely to everything that was going on. I saw no reason why two men could not take each other in marriage; to announce to the world that they would be faithful to one another under God for the rest of their lives. It is truly something to be honored and praised. There was a female reverend and to see that was to see progress within the Church. Women also have been suppressed within the Church, not allowed to teach and be in leadership. Positive change is happening.

I thought about my own wedding and marriage. The fact that my parents hinder me from having something so beautiful and sacred. None of my extended family knows that I am gay as my parents do not want to deal with all the drama that goes along with that. Whenever my grandparents on my mom’s side are over, my parents are always around. I think my grandparents have a negative view of gay people simply because they do not know any of them specifically, unbeknownst to them that they do.

Honestly, I think that if I was married it would be the first gay marriage in my family. That is a blessing but also a huge responsibility. I do not want to loose family members over it though I was never really close to them to begin with. My mom’s side is not very religious at all and I would love to be a witness in what God is doing in my life as a gay Christian.

My dad’s side of the family we no longer talk to as they were giving information to my dad’s stepfather that they did not want given to him. That was the Christian side of the family. It is hard as well because my dad’s mother has cancer and since we are cut off from that side of the family, we have no idea how she is doing. Her sister thought it only right for her son to know when the rest of the family knew.

I never want the be one in the family that people think is too good for everyone else. I want to be a part of the family, even if I am gay. Sure, it will be awkward for some but I hope that we can learn from these experiences and grow closer to being a happy, loving family.

For now, I continue to grow deeper with God in my relationship with Him and bettering myself. God will bring the right men into my life at the right time. Marriage will come at the right time in my life. Just because I now have marriage on my mind does not mean I am ready for it. I need to know for myself that the man I am marrying is everything he should be and that I truly am ready to start the journey of a lifetime.

-Josh


Conversation With My Dad (8.30.12)

I was almost late for work today as my dad and I sat down for lunch and he brought up the topic of my sexuality because of an episode of Our America that I asked both of my parents to watch and give their opinions. I had found it because of the newer episode being advertised with an interview of Alan Chambers (Exodus International) having a more pro-gay stance than he used to, moving away from reparative therapy.

It was productive in the fact that he is realizing that there is a war between Christians and the gay community. There were also times that I was personally not impressed with my responses. He asked me if I felt pressure from him to marry a woman and I responded with yes and that is what most parents want for their children. My dad responded with I just want what is best for you, whether or not you are married. My side fell flat on that note. I do think my point was valid but it came out wrong.

He disagreed with me on the Bible being a book of morals and a history book. I thought this was a point all Christians could relate with but I guess not.

The big comment came when I again described Jay Michaelson’s view of Genesis 1-2. In saying that the first problem that God saw as bad was that man was alone so God gave him all the animals He had created to name them and find a suitable match but none was found. My dad comments with “Why don’t you get a dog? You can have Gracie.” (Gracie is a dog that we currently have that has attached to me.) I was offended by this. Getting a dog to help me stay single as a gay man yet have companionship. A dog is not the same as a person, let alone a friend or another man.

We also talked about him calling my sexuality a “struggle”. I told him that I see it as a gift and I honestly do. God made me gay for a reason and purpose and I do not regret being gay. Ultimately, like every other talk we had, he left me with no hope. Nothing will ever get better. The whole “Since you are gay, your life is just going to be miserable. Sorry” type of attitude. Jesus never left people without hope for the future so why does my dad see that as the only option?

To say the least, he does not get it. (During our talk, he still used “that lifestyle”). If he brings up my sexuality again, I will talk about it but I am done hitting a wall. What I was interested in when I sent them the episode was my mom’s opinion on the topic. My dad and I beat a dead horse when it comes to talking about my sexuality but my mom and I have not talked much at all though we are pretty close. I plan on asking her tomorrow so hopefully I can get her take on it.

I honestly wonder how he would respond if I asked what he would do if I married another man. There is definitely a curiosity in me but I will not risk asking that question.

Where I am at right now, I do not feel I need a boyfriend. Sure, I would like to be a relationship to love and be loved but God is working on me to better myself right now and the right man will come along in time. Being in a relationship used to be a big deal for me but now I am focused on bettering myself and my organization for gay men and that is what is exciting, what makes me get up in the morning. I still have a crush on someone and we are still getting to know each other but I am not banking on a relationship. I have joy where I am at on the road to where I am going.

-Josh


Setting the Spark – Part II

I was surprised when my dad opened up to me last night and wanted to talk. We talked for about an hour and a half after I got off work. In wanting to send my parents another email recently, I felt that God was working in bringing my dad to me to talk. At first it was to talk about how I need to communicate more and the feelings each of us feels towards each other. Then the conversation diverged to my sexuality. It could have been much better but, at the end of the day, it was good that we had it so that I further understand where he is coming from. It shocked me where he is at with my sexuality. I already knew he does not think I am gay, I am just deceived as he would put it. There is no gay sexual orientation. He used the term “gay agenda” and I was shocked. For him to not know any vocabulary to talk about the “gay agenda”, it just shows me how far right his views are. All hope of my parents ever accepting me for who I am is shattered. To understand that he would definitely be one who would buy a chicken sandwich on Chick-Fil-A Appreciation Day really hurts.

Later in the discussion, I just felt that he just had the mentality that he was right and I was wrong. He accused me of reading all my information from “liberal” sources. Is Jay Michaelson a liberal source? I would disagree. Michaelson looks at the Bible from the original texts and gives his opinion. There are republicans who support gay marriage. I come into this topic with an open mind as I come into every issue and weigh the facts. Never will I apologize for this approach. I have read the “Christian psychology” books and Exodus International books and I do not agree with them though they gave me a good starting point on my journey.

I think Alex’s reply to “Setting the Spark – Part I” hits the nail on the head. Since we both have different views, neither of us can believe in the other’s viewpoint. The topic hits harder because it deals with who I am as a person. No agreement on who I am can be made so there is no foundation to our relationship at all. All it leaves is for me to be a person I am not, to hide my sexuality from my dad. There is no room for building a healthy relationship when there can be no truth to build a foundation for the relationship. God has called me to still love my dad but I think this will be one of the biggest challenges of my life as nothing about our relationship is grounded in truth or reality. It will be like playing the role of a straight Josh. I have done theatre in high school and college. No matter what, I will always be true about my story and experiences and no choice that I make on this character that I portray to my parents should hinder from showing them that I love them as Jesus would/does.

My mom and I have a very different relationship than my dad solely because we do not talk about my sexuality. Ultimately, it would hurt her more not being in her life. I really need to talk to her more about who I am and get her take. I know she does not approve but maybe she actually would not deny that I am gay. I am just trying to find hope in a hard situation.

A big point, when it comes to my relationship with my dad, is that his view of there not being a gay sexual orientation stems from interpretation of the Bible, not a specific verse where the Bible states that point directly. Interpretations are chosen by the people who believe them. My dad believes that since God condemns homosexuality that people can change and, since this is true, there is no gay sexual orientation. In my mind, it is one thing to disagree with me because of a specific verse in the Bible but to hinder a relationship because of an interpretation of the Bible. I could have an honest, truthful relationship with my dad if he accepted that I have a gay sexual orientation but did not believe that it was right for a man to be with another man.

It was interesting enough to know that he does not think Christians who act out a gay sexuality will go to Hell. He believes that they will grieve the Holy Spirit and that no one can loose their salvation. From a traditional view, I find that 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 (NLT) says that gay people will go to Hell for their sin of homosexuality. “Don’t you realize that those who do wrong will not inherit the Kingdom of God? Don’t fool yourselves. Those who indulge in sexual sin, or who worship idols, or commit adultery, or are male prostitutes, or practice homosexuality, or are thieves, or greedy people, or drunkards, or are abusive, or cheat people—none of these will inherit the Kingdom of God.” As a gay man, I have seen this verse thrown at gay people to condemn them to Hell. What does this verse mean in a traditional viewpoint if it is not condemning gay people to Hell?

Going back to the topic that he first starting talking to me about: communicating with my parents. Our different views hinder communication. I have not told them that I feel like I should start an organization that helps gay men because I know they will disagree with it. Right now I am reading books on how to start one and will probably officially start it after I move out. They will do everything in their power to stop the message of my viewpoint from getting out. They do not know about this blog because they would shut it down as it does not agree with their beliefs and they believe I am deceiving people.My goal is to help people who are gay and to show them that they are loved by God, not to deceive them. In the past, a Facebook status and liking certain pictures have been asked to be taken down and stopped. To their respect and authority I have taken down a status and do not like certain pictures anymore. I see an injustice being done and I want to speak out about it but I am silenced. For this stage of  my life, I will be silenced but there will be days in the future where I will not be. I look forward to those days and being honest with the world about my sexuality. I also look forward to comforting others and encouraging them in this hard journey.

At this time, I do not feel I will be completed able to figure out my sexuality in a house full of tension and parents praying for me that only conflict me more. My ultimate goal as a person is to be loved and to be able to have joy in life. I see that with another man. I want to live my life with a man by my side. If my marriage is never legal or I am looked at by the people around me as a second class citizen because of my sexual orientation, I let that weight go and embrace the legacy of  loving a husband until I die and loving other gay men in their time(s) of need. Being equal is not as important to me as living a legacy of love.

I wish you all the best in your weekend and week to come. Thank you for reading my blog!

God Bless,

Josh


Place In This World


I was inspired to write this blog post from reading The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. Currently, I am halfway through the book. As a side note: If anyone would want to recommend books that they have really enjoyed, feel free to post them in the comments or e-mail me at gayeveryday@gmail.com. Even if it is a gay-themed novel, feel free to share it. The reason that I love reading is to gain life lessons from the stories and apply them to my own life. I love learning about the human condition – every aspect of it. From the happiness and joy of life to the sadness and despair of life. If my readers would like to see my review of The Hunger Games, I would be more than happy to review it, give my take on it.

One thing that I was hit by while reading The Hunger Games is Collins’ element of the Capitol. The 13 districts waged war previously with the Capitol to essentially overthrow it as their government and to create a new one but they failed. The 13th District was even obliterated to show that the Capitol is in control.  The Capitol is always reminding them in different ways that they will always rule over the people made me connect it with the United States today and Christians today. Currently, the United States is crumbling slowly whether people see it or not. I compared the Capitol to the United States now but more so in it’s heyday. Do other countries look at us like the people of Panem (the world of The Hunger Games) view the Capitol? We have all of this prosperity and luxury yet we are not willing to share it with the hurting people of the world? Katniss, the main character of the novel from whose perspective it is written, talks about never riding in a car or never taking a shower before being selected to be a part of the Hunger Games. Also in the novel, the Capitol created Tracker Jackers (a mutation of a bee that basically tracks a person down and kills them if bothered) to remind it’s people that they will always be under the Capitol. Do we have things in our lives that we look it that just discourage us? Maybe it is even thoughts that we are always coming back to that just discourage us from progressing, from moving forward. It encouraged me to have positive things in my life that give me strength. It could be a quote taped up on your bathroom mirror that can be looked at every morning getting ready but something that would be there to remind us that life is not all bad and to keep pressing on. Are we as Christians today the Capitol towards the world? Do we force our beliefs on everyone and tell them that that is just the way things are? Do we let people suffer of treatable diseases and hunger simply because we are lazy living in our “land of luxury” the United States? Are we just accumulating all this wealth just to say we have it when there are hurting people that could really use it but it is locked away in a huge bank account?

I look at famous Christian preachers and pastors and think why do they need the big houses and all these extra items that are expensive purchases. Hopefully one day, God willing, I can influence people all over the world with the love of Jesus to gay men specifically. Honestly, most of the money will go to the cause and not to my salary. There is a difference between living comfortably and living in luxury. I do not need luxury when there are people in the world stricken with all different difficult situations. I cannot even justify having it. Though, I look up at them and point my finger and I am not in their shoes so I could not say if I would be like them but I honestly strive not to be. There has been great efforts done to help the world but there is still work to be done. There is money just sitting in a luxurious home that would be better spend giving aid to hurting people.

As Christians, I think that it is okay for us to look nice and have nice things. God wants to bless us because we are His children and He loves us but when we have to have the biggest and the best, that is when it gets out of hand. If we are Christians, we have the Holy Spirit living inside of us and God calls our bodies temples. We need to take care of our bodies and one way to do that is to look your best. With looking our best, we should also have a kind and compassionate heart. Let us not be nice and clean on the outside but dirty on the inside.

Hopefully I make sense in this post. Sometimes I can get high and lofty when I make a connection. It makes sense in my mind but it might not be conveyed as clearly as it is for me.

I am reminded too through having started a blog that it is so easy to tell others what they need to be doing and not be doing it myself. I want to set the example and be living out the life that I challenge my readers to pursue. One of the ways I reach out and help is this blog to give hope and encouragement to gay men. I contacted my Pastor to have an evening of discussion with my church about simply sharing my testimony and living as a man who is a Christian and also attracted to other men. He is currently out of town but said he would definitely get back to me. As many of my readers know, dialogue is so important when it comes to the topic of gay people. One of the quotes I would like to start is “Honest communication is the key to healing.” It drives me to do what I do. Please pray that God would work in that area of my life and I would have the opportunity to share with my church my story as a gay Christian man and that they would see how some of  their beliefs are corrupt about gay people. I honestly believe that there are straight Christians out there that just make stuff up about gay people and spread it deceiving people when they are unwilling to even have an open conversation with a gay man. This is disheartening and sad to me.

Today, I had the urge to pray for gay men and gay teens. I just asked God to not let any gay man kill themselves today because they are gay. Though there probably will be gay teens that we still lose, I would encourage my readers to also pray that prayer with me. Also, pray for opportunities to comfort and encourage gay man and gay teens when they just need someone to be there for them.

I hope all of my readers have a blessed and wonderful week ahead!

-Josh