Over the next few weeks author Laurie Krieg shares her story about same-sex attraction. She felt alone, judgment (both internal and external) that she was (is) the worst, wrestled with her identity, and felt hopeless. In this series, Laurie tackles each one of these lies and dispels them.

This Part 3 of a four part series from Laurie. Access the rest of the series here:

We Are Not Alone | We Are Not the Worst | What Am I? | Airplane Lines Offer Hope


 

 

I am often asked, “So, what are you? Are you bisexual? A celibate lesbian married to a guy? Are you in a mixed-sexuality marriage?”

 

I choose to claim zero of these labels. If I must answer I say, “I am a beloved, broken child of God.” If the asker squirms, requesting more, I eventually offer, “I am Matt-attracted, and I have same-sex attractions.”

 

These answers do not often satisfy the curious person inquiring. I understand. In our Facebook-label and sex-obsessed world we want to know how to categorize our friends.

 

But why do we have to do this? Why can’t I simply be a Christian?

 

Here are the three reasons I think we do not need adjectives tied to the Christian identity:

 

It is unnecessary.

 

If I were to say I am a celibate, gay Christian; a bisexual; and so on. I would be adding an unnecessary descriptor to my true identity of Christ-follower or Christian.

 

The title of “Christian” is enough.

 

Our culture (especially our millennial generation) often hides from owning the name Christian because of bad connotations often associated with it. We do not want to be lumped in with vocal, graceless people who claim to be Christians but are anything but Christ-like.

 

We need to take it back. I am a Christian. To be a Christian means I might stumble in my effort to become more like my Savior. I might struggle with pride, gossip, same-sex or opposite-sex lust.

 

But I don’t want to have those struggles associated with my identity. To be a human Christian means I will struggle with things. The struggles, however, don’t make me who I am. They do not change my identity.

 

So to adjust our descriptor from anything other than “Christian” is unnecessary.

 

It creates too many questions.

 

I have read articles and arguments that talked through why I should claim an identity more than that of a Christ-following person.

 

When I mentally consider taking such an identity, however, I am left with more questions than answers.

 

For example, if I say that I am a celibate, lesbian Christian who is Matt-attracted, where is the line I am not supposed to cross?

 

Can I become best friends with a woman to whom I am attracted? Can I hug her for extended periods of time—just as long as I do not mentally travel the road of lust? Could I emotionally enmesh myself with her?

 

If I take the identity of celibate lesbian person, how much of the “lesbian” identity do I get to claim? How much of the activity do I get to engage in?

 

I have more questions than answers.

 

But if I simply own my identity as a beloved and broken child of God, I know where the line is: It is behind me because my focus is on holiness. My focus is on becoming like Jesus.

 

Jesus’ didn’t focus on “don’t do this, but you can do this.” He doesn’t have lines. He has crosses to bear. He has death to self. He has a call to become like himself.

 

To take the identity of gay, celibate Christian complicates more than it simplifies. It plays with fire rather than puts the focus on the King.

 

It doesn’t add to my uniqueness.

 

I confess that I want to be seen as special. A reason I am occasionally tempted to take a same-sex label is because it makes me feel special. I get a flag. I get a club. I get to march in a parade. I have a special people group.

 

But I am lying to myself if I think a gay identity will add to my uniqueness. Jesus knit me in my mother’s womb. He may be God and in charge of everything, but he took time to give me gifts, personality, and a purpose.

 

No flag, club, or parade will add to my specialness.

 

No other human, for that matter, can ever tell me or love me enough to fill the hole in my heart that says, “Do you see me? Do I matter?”

 

A same-sex label could try. A same-sex relationship where I look to that person to help me feel better about myself could give a good effort.

 

But it doesn’t last. It’s never enough.

 

Only Jesus. Only a real friendship with Jesus is enough.

 

And being his friend and being his follower are the only labels I need.

 


 

This Part 3 of a four part series from Laurie. Access the rest of the series here:

We Are Not Alone | We Are Not the Worst | What Am I? | Airplane Lines Offer Hope