Thursday, July 31, 2014

Act Two, Scene Three - “My Mountain”

This post is part of my on-going story that I have been telling through this blog.  If you are just coming here for the first time or if you need to catch up, you can catch the earlier parts of the story in Setting the Stage or Act One.  See the navigation panel to the right labeled My Story.  I hope that my sharing of my story is helpful, encouraging, informative, or at least entertaining for you.  Please feel free to comment or contact me at the e-mail address below.  Thanks!

Timeframe: Fall, 1996

Within a few months of getting saved and becoming a part of the church at New Promise, I was feeling pretty discouraged.  I didn’t think I would ever be able to rid myself of my homosexual desires.  To make things even more frustrating, I still felt that I couldn’t even tell anyone about my struggles.  I had shared with a couple of people that I was struggling with pornography, but I kept those conversations vague and very “straight” sounding.  I felt that people could handle me struggling with pornography.  I felt they could have been all right with it if I was a drug addict or even a murderer, but being gay had such a stigma attached to it that I knew I couldn’t tell tell anyone.  They would shun me for sure or, worse, they would support me with their words and their behavior and body language would show their discomfort.

Later that year, in the Fall, a church had a gospel singer named John Starnes perform on a Sunday evening.  It wasn’t really a style of music that I would have sought out on my own or thought I would have liked, but I was so hungry for anything Christian at that time that I was very moved by the music that night.  After he was finished playing, Mr. Starnes had an altar call.  He called anyone forward that felt that they had a mountain in their life that they could not overcome.

Well, I knew what my mountain was, and I was convinced that God was speaking through the singer directly to me in that moment.  Without hesitation, I went forward.  I had made up my mind that even if he asked what I wanted prayer for, I was going to tell him.  This was just one stop for him.  My secret would leave with him when he went on to the next stop.  I was relieved when I didn’t have to say it out loud, but I knew it didn’t matter.  God knew why I was there, and I knew that God would hold me accountable.

As I was prayed over that God would help me overcome my mountain, I prayed within myself that God would rid me of my homosexual desires.  I knew that God had the power to restore me to being the person that I was intended to be.

As I left church that night, I felt lighter.  It was as though a weight had been lifted off my shoulders.  It was difficult to contain myself.  I wanted to tell everyone what I believed God had just done in my life, but I hesitated.  Even if I told them that God had healed me of my homosexuality, I still felt like they would look at that sin differently.  Plus, I needed some time to prove to myself and to God that I really had changed.

Within a few days, I had already reached the point that I just couldn’t contain my excitement.  I called Angela and told her that I needed to talk to her.  We made plans to have lunch at her house the next day.  I couldn’t wait to tell her what God had done for me.


© Joshua Culbertson 2014

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