“…that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you
out of darkness into His marvelous light…” (1 Peter 2:9b)
After many years of living in the homosexual lifestyle, I was drawn to faith in Christ through the persistent love of a group of believers. The transformation I experienced is compelling evidence of the freedom available to anyone who will trust the unceasing love of God.
From my experience, the homosexual lifestyle isn’t fun, glamorous or trendy. It doesn’t fill the emptiness inside or help someone find his or her identity. It doesn’t bring peace—and it never will. I lived as a lesbian for 14 years and now, by the grace of God, I have left that life behind forever.
Much of my willingness to experiment with homosexuality was influenced by the environment of my youth. I was hardened by a difficult childhood. Most of the men in my life abused me physically and sexually. After graduating from high school and moving away from home, I accepted Christ as my Savior, got involved in church and studied the Bible. I knew that God created man for woman and woman for man and knew that He had a plan for my life. I also knew homosexuality was a sin, but I ignored what I knew and walked away from God.
The memory of being raped as a child left me angry and scared, so I gravitated toward relationships with women to avoid repeated pain. I thought I could find my own solution to the deep pain inside. God let me walk away, but He never stopped loving me.
At first, the emotional pull toward other women was stronger than the sexual lure, but I fed both desires by placing myself in compromising and tempting situations. James 1:14-15 says, “Each one is tempted, when by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. Then after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin and sin when it is full grown, gives birth to death.”
I experienced a type of death over and over again as I sought to fill the emptiness in my life with things that could never satisfy. During sleepless nights, I wondered, “Will I ever have a family?” I imagined a different life with a husband and children and questioned my choices, but I couldn’t imagine a way out.
Hollywood would have you believe that gays and lesbians are happy, humorous and well-adjusted people, but very rarely do they show the other side. They don’t show the tears and the desperate ache to be loved beneath all the jokes, clever comebacks and playful remarks.
I felt twisted inside—like something wasn’t right—when I pursued same-sex relationships. I listened to society’s lie that I was born that way and just needed to accept it. I went to gay bars hoping to meet people. I smiled on the outside, but a war raged on the inside. I knew I was living a lie.
When I was 40 years old, a conversation with a woman at a grocery store landed me in a Bible study at her church. There were nine other women in the group. I told those ladies, “I am living a homosexual lifestyle, but I want to leave it if you will help me.”
The women in that group loved me and prayed for me as I processed through the healing from abuse and into freedom from the things that had enslaved me. One family asked me to move into their home for a year. I lived my second childhood in that Christian household and established a foundation on which to rebuild my. As they opened their home to show me love and acceptance, God opened His arms and let me cry away my pain.
I know this transformation is not a denial of suppressed homosexual feelings. I left the lesbian lifestyle the same way I went in—by my own free will. When I left, I had something better to run to: the love of Jesus Christ.
Christ’s’ love didn’t brainwash me, but it did change me. “He brought me out of a terrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my steps. He has put a new song in my mouth…” (Psalm 40:2-3)
Sin will take you deeper into the pit than you ever want to go and it will keep you longer than you ever want to stay. God’s love is our only freedom from sin and His love is only found through a relationship with Jesus Christ. I know, because I have witnessed it in my life.
God’s message is not, “Stop being a sinner and then come to me.” It is just the opposite: “Come to me and then we will face whatever changes need to be made together.”
“Jesus, I declare You to be my risen Lord, God and Savior. Forgive me of my sins and come into my heart. Thank you for freeing me from sin and for healing my pain with your great love.”
Janet tells her story in the book Called Out, available at her website.