Saturday, 28 March 2015

Questioning Your Sexuality as a Christian

As some of you are aware I live and minister in Bournemouth within the 5th largest LGBT community in the UK. I spend my time listening, loving and reaching out to my local community, many of whom identify as LGBT, and as a youth worker at heart much of my time is spent with young people. 

It is out of this practice that this resource has come from. I appreciate that some of you may disagree with me. But please know that this comes from place of loving people well. This blog has many pieces written on some of the things I am involved in please feel free to take a look. 

The resource below was written for Spring Harvests ‘Big Issues – A Helpful Handbook For Young People And Youth Leaders On Some Of Life Challenges 2015’ 

I wrote it for free as a gift to all the young people attending Spring Harvest who find themselves questioning their sexuality. Both my own children have had significant faith experiences at SH and for that I am incredibly thankful!   

The whole booklet is available to purchase at this years Spring Harvest event or you can buy it online by visiting here 



Questioning Your Sexuality

What’s The Issue?
Who we find attractive often plays a big part in how we see ourselves and in how we feel others can see us. At times it can feel like it defines who we are and what our future will be.

Homosexuality, Same Sex Attraction, gay, lesbian or however you choose to label it - some of us find ourselves attracted to the same sex.

There are also some of us who find both the same and opposite gendered people attractive. This is often known as being bisexual.

Of course there are those of us who simply don’t find anyone sexually attractive at all and this is often known as being asexual.

For many of us at different points in our life we can seek to question what label fits us best in the quest to know who we really are.

Truth is, we are way more than our sexuality!


We are ALL made by God.


We are ALL loved by God.


We are ALL created uniquely and each and every one of us is attracted to different types of people.

This Big Issue gives advice and direction for anyone questioning their sexuality and identity because of it.

Why Me?
There are no formal statistics of how many people identify as being attracted to the same sex. There are two main reasons for this: firstly, sexuality isn’t always easy to attach a label to, and secondly, it can often be difficult for people to share how they identify sexually. 

As Christians some of us can worry about sharing or owning our sexuality because we might worry about what others might think or how people might treat us if they know we experience same-sex attraction.

Fear can keep even the most confident person silent.

However, it is safe to say that there are many Christians who find people of the same sex attractive. So if you find people of the same sex attractive you are definitely not alone!

Our identity is so much bigger than whom we find attractive though. As Christians our primary identity is that of a Child of God.

What Does The Bible Say?
The Bible contains only a few verses that discuss same sex relationships,
and there are many different theological views that stem from them.

Christians disagree about what the verses actually mean and how
they should be applied to today’s world. This can mean that the churches we find ourselves in might have a very different response to the topic compared to other churches.


These differences can make it hard for us to understand what the Bible wants to say to each of us today.

But remember that this is not a new thing. For centuries Christians far more intelligent than us have been trying to discern what the Bible does say about many difficult issues and they haven’t always been able to agree.

So whilst not all Christians or even all churches agree on a definitive ‘This is what the bible says’ we can all agree that God is love.

We all agree that God knows each and every one of us. Jesus’ life, death and resurrection truth is based on his identity and not on how we self-identify sexually.

What Can I Do?
It can be lonely and difficult as a Christian to safely explore your sense of sexuality and identity. This often means that we can seek unhealthy ways and places to explore who we are in secret. Some of us can find ourselves living double or even treble lives and this can result in us feeling guilty, ashamed and isolated from both God and others

Speak Up
Ever heard an adult say something like ‘Yeah we can have a chat but I can’t promise to keep everything you say a secret’?

This can put a lot of people off talking to a Youth Worker or a Church Pastor about sexuality, but please understand that your sexual identity is not something that needs reporting. Your identity is personal and confidential to you.

Youth workers and pastors should only ever report stuff when there’s a risk of danger to yourself or others – to do with safeguarding. That’s the only time they would need to say anything to a professional like the Police or Social Services.

So - sharing with a responsible adult that you trust can be positive. Sharing that you have been finding people of the same sex attractive or that you are questioning your sexuality should not result in them telling anyone.

They will be able to listen to you, give advice and help you find local services that might be useful. They will also be able to pray with you, and ask God to continue to show you how much he loves you.

Seeking God
When you start to question your sexuality or find people of the same sex attractive you may only want to spend time studying what the verses in the Bible say on the subject. Others may find themselves withdrawing from acts of worship, prayer and Bible reading all together.


As we have said throughout, you are more than your sexuality and we would encourage you to find ways to keep seeking God.

It’s important to be part of a church where you feel comfortable and accepted as a child of God. As we’ve mentioned, Christians hold different views on sexuality, so different churches handle this issue in different ways. Finding a church that holds similar values to you can be really helpful.

Try following a set of daily devotion notes or undertake a bible reading plan. Find people that you can pray with.

Remember God is interested in all aspects of your life and wants you to share your whole self with him not just this part.

Where Can You Get More Help?
Inclusive Church - inclusive-church.com
Are committed to working towards the church being open and welcome to all people. The site has an online directory of inclusive churches so you can find one near you.


Diverse Church - diversechurch.org.uk
An online community of 18 – 30yr olds who identify as ‘Fully LGBT and Fully Christian’ Although a closed group they regularly post podcasts and youtube videos that anyone of any age can access.


Diverse Church Parents - email parents@diversechurch.org.uk
An ecumenical online community of Christian parents of LGBT young people in the UK. 
The group offers confidential pastoral support to parents whether they affirm same sex relationships or not. 

Living Out – livingout.org
A group of Christians who experience same-sex attraction bringing out into the open the questions and dilemmas that gay Christians can often face.


The Gay Christian Network – gaychristian.net
Dedicated to building bridges and offering support for those caught in the crossfire of one of today’s most divisive culture wars.

Love Is An Orientation – Book by Andrew Marin

Some useful biographies: 
Wesley Hill, Washed and Waiting 
Rachel Mann, Dazzling Darkness 
Eve Tushnet, Gay and Catholic

The Truth
Who ever you find yourself attracted to or how ever you decide to label you sexuality, there are some amazing things about you that are 100% true.

God loves you and cares about all of you - including the bits that no one else knows about and even when you feel far from him. He loves you with an unconditional love that cannot be matched by any one else. Thankfully there is nothing you can do to change this. God’s love for you is not dependent on who you find attractive or your sexuality God knows you better than you know yourself. He knows your fears and your hurts. Don’t take our word for it. Check out these verses in the Bible for yourself:

God sees you as his child (John 1:12)
God has known you since he knitted you together in your mother’s womb (Psalm 139)
You cannot be separated from the love of God. (Romans 8:35-39)
In Jesus there is no condemnation (Romans 8:1-2)
You can come to God with total confidence (Hebrews 4:16)
God has amazing things for you to do for Him (Ephesians 2:10)


I am always up for conversing with others so if this has led you to want to chat please do contact me ...

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