Fearfully and Wonderfully Made
“Why are some people gay?”
This is a question that remains confusing and unanswered for many. However, answering it satisfactorily will carry us a long way toward finding the harmony in the church that has eluded us for a long time.
The answer in Scripture is clear:
There is nothing in Scripture or life that says Psalm 139 belongs to some of us but not others. Each of us is formed by God, whether we are white or black, male or female, gay or straight.
For those of us who are straight, that God made others of us gay can be hard to understand. At times, it can be even harder to accept for those of us who were made gay.
Time and again, when GLBT people share how they came out to themselves, to those they love, and to the world, they speak of an emerging self-awareness that is often grudging because it runs contrary to their own expectations of themselves and their loved ones. We all start out with the cultural presumption that everyone is heterosexual, including ourselves. Realizing and accepting difference from the presumed norm is an amazing and difficult personal journey. A wonderful range of testimony to this experience is available in the book, Crisis: 40 Stories Revealing the Personal, Social, and Religious Pain and Trauma of Growing up Gay in America.
In my own experience, GLBT people often speak the way a college professor friend spoke the other day when she told me at lunch that she knew she was lesbian when she was thirteen years old. In the same vein, my friend Chuck Nichols, who died suddenly last year, spoke of knowing he was different when he was five years old. When he reached adolescence, he realized that the long-recognized difference was that he was gay.
Chuck, a wonderful Christian, used to declare emphatically, “God made me!” For the GLBT faithful I know, this realization and acceptance kindles the gratitude to God expressed in Psalm 139. They know they are fearfully and wonderfully made.