To My Brother and Sister With Identity Issues,
I’ve started penning this letter several times. I’ve also stopped several times. Your plight is one difficult to address. Your plight is one that makes me uncomfortable.
Perhaps I’m uncomfortable because I see how I could have very well become you. Perhaps I’m uncomfortable because I know the backlash that could ensue when I share my views on the subject. The truth is I understand that there are few things more painful than for one to not understand who one is. I don’t particularly like dealing with painful things.
Those whose understanding of themselves align with societal and cultural understandings of who and what they should be, never quite understand why others who are not as lucky as they, search so relentlessly for an answer to the question of “Who am I?”. Those whose understanding of themselves mesh with societal and cultural constructs of what they should be, very rarely seem to understand that not knowing who you are strikes the very center of your existence: your purpose; your reason for being.
In setting the stage for what I’m about to say, I should probably let you know that my stance is one predicated on my faith. In setting the stage for this letter, I’d like to say that you may not necessarily like every perspective that I hold on the subject. In setting the stage for this letter, I’d like to say that though my views may differ that I’ll never be callous because I understand your dilemma.
Though I understand it and I would love nothing more than to relieve you of your pain and your confusion by saying the words that would bring some measure of comfort to you, I probably can’t. I can’t say, “Live your truth”. I can’t say, “You were born that way so be you.” I can’t offer you any of the platitudes that would render you comfortable in your state of confusion.
I begrudge you these platitudes because I wish for you to live and experience God’s heart for you; God’s best for you. I begrudge you these platitudes because I believe that a decision to live contrary to what God has created you to be is a decision to settle for less than God’s best. I begrudge you these platitudes because I trust God’s wisdom, His design and purpose for you.
He called you man and though I believe that manhood is not what we have reduced it to, I also believe that it comes with a distinct God-given, God-designed sexual identity. I believe that the man’s rib is only a woman. He called you woman and though I believe that womanhood is not what we have reduced it to, I also believe that it comes with a distinct God-given, God-designed sexual identity. I believe that the woman was made for the man. I believe that God designed us male and female, in his image. I also believe that when it comes to sexuality, the fullness of God’s glory can only be reflected in a sexual union between a man and a woman.
I do not wish for you to feel broken or beaten. I do not wish for you to feel ostracized or unwanted. This is me simply saying that I want God’s best for you.
The conclusion of this letter should probably begin now. But as I read over the words that I’ve written, I question why I was even reluctant to address your plight in the first place.
As my thoughts wander, I realize that the issue with identity is something that every human being can identify with; an issue that every human has experienced. And perhaps if we seek not to separate issues of sexual identity from the issues we experience in the other realms of identity – emotional, physical and spiritual – then we can remove the contrived complexities surrounding the issues of sexual identity; that you can better hear us in the stead of feeling beaten by us.
I think if we can see that the issue with identity emerges anytime we seek to live out of God’s best for us, then we can recognize that the issue with identity is something that the liar, the glutton, the reveler, the fornicator, the alcoholic, the drug addict, the narcissist, the thief, the boaster – as well as the homosexual, bi-sexual and transsexual – can identify with.
For all the times that we’ve made you feel like your wrongs were so much greater; for all the times we’ve made you feel like there is no redemption for your inability to understand who you are, I apologize. But I must end for now, and I end with this.
Ultimately, God’s heart is for us all to live in satisfaction – happily – with the way that he has created us; fulfilling that which he formed us for. For this, I pray that wherever you experience a tug of war with identity, that you will seek out God’s heart for you and aspire to it.
Wanting God’s Best For Ya