This is something we all have in common as humans. I’m sure we can all remember a time when we were kids and had a hero, role model, or mentor of the same gender. We all have a desire within us to be close to others of the same-sex. Right? Therefore, same sex closeness in and of itself is right and good. So are we able then to separate sexual longing from same-sex attraction?
Due to the confusion and values that our culture promotes, it’s not long before this normal same-sex attraction can progress to sexual activity. Continual sexual practice then only causes more confusion. Our culture today is quick to confuse intimacy and sexuality directly, thinking that intimacy must include something of a sexual nature. But this doesn’t have to be so.
No, I believe that there is much that others can offer and should, unrelated to sex. I know that for me, I still struggle at times to feel and believe I have a place of belonging amongst my own gender. It’s not that I don’t believe that I am a man. It has more to do with my living experience and acceptance I have or don’t have with those around me. I believe that building meaningful relationships is the key to feel accepted and to fit in. To do this, it takes a time investment…something that is a huge cost for us all. But I still want to believe that it is possible.
We do have a lot of things working against the building of meaningful relationships(ie social media, busy jobs, family dynamics, unavailability, difference of personalities, etc). But we can get past these things. Not only can we, we MUST!
Paul understood this real dynamic and prayed that we would be “strengthened with might by the power of the Spirit in our inner man”(Ephesians 3:16). You see, the ability to produce meaningful relationships grounded in real love is only accomplished by the work of the Spirit within us. So I guess the lack of meaningful relationships could reflect the lack of dependence on the Spirit? We are trying to do this in our own strength and therefore failing. I need that reminder often!
Life is found in the midst of joy in relationships…both in connecting with God and with others. To be honest, when I’m not thriving in this reality, that is when the opposite becomes alluring. That’s when my heart wants to find a temporary satisfaction that will lead to death, a mirage offered by the world that looks like something meaningful with a man. But I’ve come too far. And so I must remind myself that I’m not crazy, strange, or different. Everyone has this longing and “attraction”, but what one chooses to do about it determines what they believe and trust in.