I had placed the story of my coming out of the closet here a while ago, and then went through one of those manic moments where I throw everything away. You know those spring cleaning moments?
I do that often with old writings. I had maybe four novels I’d written in the 90’s and picked them up – because back then they were typed out – and threw them in the garbage. Probably where they belonged.
I do that with a lot of stuff – just throw it away. (I’m sure there is some deep psychological meaning that I’ll have to figure out later on why I do this.)
I had also written so many essays and small studies that I placed here and then deleted because I wanted to revamp my site. I do that a lot too.
But, that’s not what I’m writing about.
If you read my blog you’ve seen photos of my girlfriend (the woman I plan to marry) and you know I’m pretty gay.
My life now is not what I had planned. It started out in a small urban city in California. That city, Gardena, was predominantly Asian – Japanese. For some reason, my life has revolved around Asian people. I really don’t know why. My maid of honor when I had been married was Korean. The first girl I had a crush on in kindergarten was Japanese. My favorite boss was from Taiwan. One of my dearest and most trusted friends in the world is Chinese (his parents were immigrants who came here years ago). The country I traveled to as a missionary was the Philippines, Hong Kong and China. Now, I’m promoting the only Asian candidate for President, Andrew Yang. I’m in love with a beautiful Chinese woman. I’m kind of hooked on K-Drama’s and Japanese anime. I also love J-pop, K-pop and China Pop (?).
So, basically I have been reincarnated from an Asian country – just not sure which one.
No, I’m just kidding.
And I’ve gone off on a tangent again that has nothing to do with what I originally was writing about.
When I Fell Out of the Closet
There was no sudden moment that I realized, “I’m gay! Oh, my goodness! Now, I’ll need to find out where they all meet for this gay agenda they are pushing. How do I get access to the club?”
There is seriously not a club or hidden lair where they conspire this gay agenda.
But what I found out is: I am not really part of the lesbian club. When I came out of the closet I found out I’m not part of the lesbian scene because I was married for over 20 years and that means I am a lesbian outlier.
When I started dating after my divorce many women treated me strangely. One actually asked, “Why were you married for so long if you were gay?” And then she continued to scrutinize my authenticity for the remainder of the date and it irked me to no end.
I am positive, and without a doubt, very gay. But, I have also been very religious and those two don’t mix. You have to constantly pray the gay away.
No, hah, I’m kidding about that last part. I just honestly was pretty clueless for most of my life.
I used the tagline on my blog, “A Silly Sapphian’s Spiritual Sojourn,” because I liked how it sounded. That’s pretty much it. I don’t put a lot of thought into things.
“Oh, sounds good. I’ll use it!” *big smile*
That’s me, for the most part – clueless and kind of an airhead.
God Actually Pushed Me Out of the Closet
What??? Say What??? You’re blaming God for being gay?
Well, this is how it went. Let’s not go too overboard and mix semantics.
I “got saved” in 1977 by being witnessed to by a really sweet young woman who met me in school. We were both in the high school choir.
I was an alto and she was a soprano. I was a guitarist and songwriter, and she loved my music. We hit it off.
She was pretty cute, and honestly I was attracted to her and so I loved hanging out with her and letting her tell me all about Jesus. I had a serious crush on her and would follow her anywhere… even to Jesus.
So, my attraction to K – I’ll call her K – got Jesus in the door, and I was soon visiting her church and went forward, got baptized and the rest was history. Pretty soon, I really did fall for Jesus – like hard. He was my all and all.
I was pushing Jesus on everyone like a drug. Take him. Take him! Into your heart, dammit!
She was going to leave on missions for the summer and so at 17 I wanted to become a missionary. I had nothing going for me at my dysfunctional home of alcoholics and drug addicts and dealers, and so yeah, in California I joined a Southern Baptist church founded by people from Texas, got heavily involved, and then jumped on the bandwagon of religious zealots wanting to save the world through evangelism.
And overall, I was really sold on the whole “come to Jesus” thing. Really. It took over my brainwaves and I felt I was in this godly bubble. Even my mother, who is pretty religious, thought I had gone overboard with the whole “Be saved!” “Come to Jesus,” “You’re going to hell!” thing. I was telling everyone they were going to hell if they did not believe in Jesus. Come to think of it, “what does that really mean?” Believe in a person? God? Person-God? Believing isn’t a tangible thing.
No questions asked – just believe it. The Bible says it, so it’s true. But does it???
My eyes were constantly swirly and glistening with Jesus joy and love… kind of… you know, except that whole “Believe or you go to hell” thing. That’s not really a very nice thing to tell people. I told a whole lot they were going. But I wasn’t. I was chosen. I was special. Not like those non-believing kind.
I joined a Christian campus ministry (cult) and was soon traveling all over and sharing the “good news” with anyone and everyone. I traveled to England, Scotland, Philippines, Hong Kong, China and across the United States. Easily telling everyone I knew how to get to heaven and they were all going to hell if they didn’t believe. It’s a faith thing – don’t think too deeply.
I eventually left that group (cult) and moved to Texas to help a friend with his new campus ministry (a different cult), and started attending his church.
At that church, I met my now ex-husband in around 1987 and we were married. I left the second group (cult) and was happily married, leaving all that cult stuff behind.
For those first few years it was absolute bliss. Well, the sex sucked – like really. I didn’t get it. Why do people like sex? It really sucks and I hated that part of marriage. I asked my mom, “When do you start to like this?” And she said it will happen.
It never happened.
But, I got pregnant within a year and had my son. NOW, I knew what love truly was because I’d never loved anyone more than my little boy. He was amazing. Parental love is amazing.
And then I got pregnant within another two years and had my beautiful daughter. Again, I fell in love even more. She was the cutest and sweetest person in the world.
Children are your blessing and the love of your life. Honestly, I am so thankful I have my kids. They are both so amazing.
So, as you can see, God blessed me greatly with two awesome kids.
That was the best part of my marriage.
Marriage, and Yet Gay
I became very involved in women’s Bible study for most of the 90’s while my children were small. I was so involved and I was reading my Bible and writing studies like… ALL the time. I was totally into God and Jesus, baby. I was a real evangelical’s dream team of knowledge. Women at church would praise me for my godliness and knowledge. I’d go home and pat myself on the back (figuratively).
“Where’s that verse?”
“Why, right here!”
I knew the Bible backward and forward.
We were a family of American godliness: Christian, Conservative, Republican and living in the suburbs with others just like us.
But, as I watched my children and they asked questions about things, I had to answer them. I also had to spend time alone because my husband was always working to pay for our expensive home in a golf course community (I did the whole volunteer, PTA, and tennis club thing) and having four mouths to feed. Life with my husband became more and more precipitous as I still did not enjoy intimate times with him. I didn’t like him holding me, or kissing, or pretty much anything.
He told me to go see a doctor. There was obviously something wrong with me because I didn’t enjoy sex. This also made him very grumpy and angry. So much so, he was taking it out on our children – mainly our son who was being difficult. (We would find out later why he was being so difficult.)
My son was having problems in school. He was not like other kids. He was just so different. I was so godly I originally thought he was demon-possessed because he was making low guttural sounds, barking and chirping, and jumping around in his skin, kicking the table and shirking his shoulders, his eyes would roll back and forward. But yeah, that’s called Tourette Syndrome, but I was a godly dolt, so buried in the Bible I didn’t see what was happening around me.
Because of my son’s TS I began to wake up. I needed to help my son. My son soon took precedence over the whole godly thing because I really love my son.
My ex did not handle our son’s TS well, and then the comorbid problems that come with TS started showing up, like ADHD and depression, suicidal thoughts and social problems. He was reactionary and would do something suddenly without thinking it through. (He now has horrible OCD and it has taken over his life as an adult.) I have deep respect for what my son has gone through in his life.
Back Up on Jesus
It’s not that I had to leave Jesus and God, it’s that I had to start looking at a bigger picture of the world. Let me rephrase: I had to wake up to reality.
Mental illness and physiological problems of the brain occur in human beings. Humans are all very different. We are all constructed differently. There is more to life than what is in one book. God is so much bigger, if you believe in God, and if you don’t, the world and life is so much bigger than one religion or system of belief. There has to be more in such a large construct of difference and nature. To think that all knowledge of God only relies on one – ONE – book?
I started studying about Tourette Syndrome and all the other comorbid factors that came along with it, and I started to look into life and why? I began to question stuff.
I started to question things much more. The internet was just gaining legs and now I had a new search tool available to me.
At around the turn of the millennium, I was online more and more.
I joined some boards and found people saying things outside of my church group and own cloistered life. I became one of those dumb Christians online, you know the ones? Facts don’t mean anything because… you know, God? Faith is intangible. I could just say the infallible Bible said it and that makes it right. Don’t give me science or any reasoning, I have the Bible right here. It has zero mistakes.
Wow, I was really not very bright.
Questioning the Bible and God
People didn’t care about going to hell. And I wondered, “Why? Do you want to go to Hell?”
Well, is there a hell even mentioned in the Bible? Did you know C.S. Lewis didn’t believe there was a hell? I wondered that too. I began to question a lot of things.
Many of the strongly held beliefs, I realized, are only mentioned once or twice and then they became canon. And those placements in the Bible were even questionably added within all the years the Bible was rewritten. There are two or three verses against homosexuality that were added in the 1600’s and were never original text. Did you know that?
Why don’t people own slaves when it’s cool to own slaves in the Bible. Why do so-called Christians get divorced when it is suggested that you really are not supposed to?
Basically, everyone was using the Bible as a hammer when they wanted to push their own view and agenda, and then ignored when it went against what they wanted. They said some things are cultural and other things are not? Did you know homosexuality is mentioned only once or twice in the Bible? Out of how many thousands of pages? And yet, culturally we live in a country that despises gay people because… why?
All kinds of mental gymnastics and word variations were thrown into the mix so points and arguments could be won. I know someone who actually brought up David of the Bible to argue why it was okay to have affairs on his wife. He went on an hour rant about how he was so godly and being like David. He was picking up chicks right and left.
And he was very believable because he knew his Bible stuff. And yeah, David fooled around on his hundreds of wives a lot. It was a thing back then. He also committed murder – but, a man after God’s own heart? Makes you question stuff, yeah?
So… basically, there are so many contradictions that you can pretty much push any agenda and tell others God says its cool if you want something to turn out the way you want it to turn out.
My Quest Began…
…to find out what Jesus really said and who is God? What is the Bible? When was it written? How was it written? How was it put together and by whom? Who decided what books to keep of ancient writings, what texts were manipulated to fit in, and what texts were kept out? I read all these books to answer these questions. But I really just wanted to know, “WHAT DID JESUS REALLY SAY?” And that was because, I kind of liked Jesus as a person.
My favorite was “The Jesus Sayings: The Quest for His Authentic Message,” by Rex Weyler. That book hit me hard because he was searching and asking the same questions I was asking. I also liked, “The Jesus Wars,” by John Philip Jenkins. There were myriad other books, but those were the ones that I enjoyed the most in my search.
You know what? Actually, the Gospel of Thomas was the one written the closest to when he was supposedly on earth, but it said stuff about Jesus the hierarchy did not want to be known. There were a bunch of other writings.
Did you know Jesus never called himself God, only the son of God, at the same level as all son’s and daughter’s (women included) who love God, and follow God’s teaching, and yet passages were changed to change the entire New Testament of the Bible to be that He was God incarnate. That was part of the Council of Nicea’s implementation. They needed a Deity.
So, 150 to 200 years later something was written on this Savior? Was it passed down by word of mouth? In fact, there wasn’t a lot of documentation. But at the time they were having problems with the Jewish people and so they needed someone to split them up and squash their movements.
The Bible lays out certain statements and then changes the statement. I mean, I know there are Bible pushers that will argue up and down that I’m wrong… but I’m not. Seriously, spend around 30 years reading it and studying it and you will see these giant plot holes in this book. You don’t need a degree to see this, by the way. Just be an avid reader.
It had around 40 authors over the span of hundreds and thousands of years and somehow they were completely in sync?
I knew when I woke up that I had been brainwashed. For years. I felt like my thoughts were my own for the first time. And then…
I Wanted to Know the Truth About God
You will find a certain commentary on how you should treat others that holds throughout all of history. Also, in most ancient writings you will find out that how you treat others is amazingly similar.
Whether it is Buddhist, Hindu, Taoist, Shinto, and many of the other religions, or many philosophers of the past, that speak of peaceful living and knowing yourself, they actually sounded a lot like what Jesus actually said once you trim away all the fat.
The basic tenets of kindness are:
How you treat others
How you treat yourself
How you treat creation and the world around you
How you should not ever, ever judge another
Mercy is greater than judgment
Be good to those who are weaker
Be hospitable to a stranger
Love God and Love others
Know yourself (THIS IS THE BIGGEST ONE)
And hopefully, I didn’t miss one.
You know what is really not talked about by God or Jesus in reality? Sin. They don’t really think that much of it or about it. Jesus was always brushing it off and trying to get people to see what was at the heart of the problem. When the young lawyer asked him about the greatest law of God, you could almost see Jesus face palming, “Oy, he just doesn’t get it.” And so he told him about something that he could relate, and it was an awesome trolling, but the young lawyer still just didn’t get it. He was so set on law and sin.
Pharisees loved talking about sin. Pharisees loved judging others. Human beings LOVE to judge and push others down. Its how they lift themselves up. We see that all the time online and with the cancel culture, online shaming, and how everyone just loves to jump on the bandwagon and go after a supposed wrongdoer with the pitchforks.
People love to judge, don’t they?
You ever meet someone who likes to lift their esteem by cutting down another person? That’s sin blaming. It might have a different name, but its the same thing. If you are busy pointing out sin then you get a pass as the judge of the other. People want to push down others to feel good about themselves.
Sin was a concept loved by the writers of the Bible. The 10 commandments? They could be boiled down to how you love another and how you love God. None of those have to do with keeping score on the sin card.
But what about sin? Homosexuality is living in sin! Oh my! No, not really. Licentious behavior might be living in sin, but being gay is not living in sin. (Seriously, read the Bible.) But why licentious behavior? Well, because it might hurt you or others. You ever heard of STD’s? Or, even the psychological damage?
And that’s what it boils down to: hurting yourself or others is not a good thing. Kills a soul in the long run.
Don’t hurt others and don’t hurt yourself.
And that’s the end of the first part of my coming out story. Please come back for Part Two if you liked this one. If not, let me know. If you did, please let me know with a “Like” or follow. I love comments too as long as they aren’t dumb.
My book, “This Silly Sapphian’s Spiritual Sojourn: A Poorly Remembered Memoir,” will be published possibly next year. This is kind of a streamlined version. I actually go much more into my childhood and upbringing. I hope it comes out okay. (I just laughed at that pun.)
I hope you all have a good night and good searching! 🙂
Goodnight Gracie! 😀 ❤ I love you.