(This is the 20th dialogue in this series. It’s an edited and reconstructed version of the actual talk, but it accurately represents the essence of what was said. This is done with his permission, provided all personal references are omitted. I pick it up as usual after the opening chit-chat.)
Me: Hey, how’s everything going?
Him: Well, that’s why I called. After our last talk I thought I needed to follow up and let you know what’s going down.
Me: I was just thinking about you the other day. So, yes, I‘m glad you called. So what’s going on?
Him: Last time we talked I told you about the guy I was getting a crush on. And that I felt I was going to give in and fall into sin. I felt I couldn’t fight it any more.
Me: Yes, I remember. When I hung up that day I thought you were a goner. So what happened?
Him: Well, I went home that weekend and did something I would not have been able to do a year ago.
Me: And what was that?
Him: I talked to my dad about it.
Me: Really?! And how did he react to that??!!
Him: Pretty well, actually. I told him I was having a real struggle with temptation and wanted to know what he’d do if he were in my place. He said he’s never been in my place and laughed. Then we just talked about sexual temptation and that it doesn’t matter if you’re being tempted as a straight guy or a gay one, the biblical information applies the same.
Me: That’s good. I would basically agree with that. So what did he say about that?
Him: He just went over the standard biblical passages about sexual purity and how to deal with temptation. He ended up by telling me that I really knew what to do. I just needed to determine to do it for Christ. And I knew he was right. Then we talked about the guy in particular I was attracted to. I couldn’t believe I was actually talking so openly about this with my dad! But he listened with obvious interest and concern.
Me: That’s really remarkable, especially after his initial reaction when you told your family you were ‘gay’. That’s not what you normally find in these situations.
Him: The change in my dad is unbelievable. He told me it began when one day he was reading about the woman caught in adultery in the gospel of John. The words there about casting the first stone came home to him and started to change his thinking about how he was treating me.
Me: So how did your conversation turn out?
Him: He asked me if the young man I was attracted to knew how I felt about him. I told him no, I had never said anything. Then he asked if I was going to. That kind of took me by surprise. I sat looking at him and finally said I probably wouldn’t. He said that was good, especially since if he was a Christian, he didn’t need the temptation that would probably bring to him.
Him: Yeah, wow is right. And I knew as we were talking that it would be a great evil on my part to put that kind of a stumbling block in the way of a fellow believer. My dad then said he would probably have better counsel to give me if it was a girl I was having sexual desire for. He could empathize with that. Then we laughed and he hugged me and told me he was there to talk about this anytime I needed to.
Me: That was it?
Him: Pretty much. It was just the talking that did about as much good as any advice he could give. Besides, like he said, I knew what I needed to do about it.
Me: So how are things going at college now with this guy around that you like?
Him: It’s not any different than what straight Christian guys have to resist when they see girls they think are hot.
Me: True. That’s a good way to approach it. The important thing is maintaining sexually pure thoughts as much as possible and avoiding tempting situations.
Him: The hard thing though is that a straight guy can look forward to developing a relationship with a girl and then maybe someday getting married. But Christians like me who are attracted to guys and have no sexual attraction to females don’t have that to look forward to. That’s hard.
Me: For sure. The standard counsel is one of two options, either resignation to a celibate life or opposite-sex marriage with all the difficulties that brings with it for you and the woman you marry.
Him: Neither sounds too desirable to me. Why doesn’t God just change me and make me a hetero?
Me: That’s a question without any answer I’ve ever found. I don’t know.
Him: Why is anyone like us in the first place? Why?
Me: Another question without an answer.
Him: You’re a real answer man. HA!
Me: If you ever find the answers, would you clue me in?
Him: I promise.
Me: Hey, nice talking to you. And I’m glad you’re doing as well as you are. I was worried this wouldn’t be the conversation we’d be having next time we talked.
Him: Oh, you know how it goes. Strong today, weak tomorrow. God keeps us.
Me: Indeed. And I have to hang up. Lunch is over and my desk is full of deadlines.
Him: OK. Thanks for talking. And keep praying for me as I do for you. Bye.