long lunch.

Yesterday, a friend sat across from me at the table. He listened to me talk about my shame. The shame I feel when I question God and why He allowed me to be gay and why is it so unfair. My friend listened to me talk about my frustration with my friends and how they don’t understand and how it feels like they don’t even really want to. He listened to my anger over how the Church treats single people and sends the message that they are unimportant and not as much a part of God’s kingdom as married people. He listened to me talk about my fear of sharing any of this with other guys because I’m still scared of being ostracized or stereotyped as the obvious outcast, because being gay is a special kind of fucked up if you’re a Christian.

He listened. He didn’t tell me I was wrong. He told me he was sorry, that it is hard, and that Churches are falling single people. He validated my emotions.

And honestly, I didn’t leave this lunch with any more answers than I came with. It still seems unfair. It’s still hard. But I do know that I’m not alone. I know that I have people.

And somehow that’s enough.

Thanks, friend.

late at night

It just feels so fucking unfair. It’s bad enough that I realized I was gay to begin with. But I did the closeted insecure high school kid thing. I did the coming out thing. Over and over and over. The not knowing who would still be my friend. The unwarranted messages from “concerned” family. The looks that said, “Sure you are,” when I tried to explain that I still loved God and was still Christian. I still go through this shit.

But where’s my happy ending? Hell, I don’t need the happy ending, but where’s the part where I get to kiss a boy for the first time? When does the plot change and I end up with a bunch of cute pictures of me and him on my Instagram? That’s how this story is always supposed to go.

But why does even asking that feel like cheating?

I can’t shake God. He is always there. Silent a lot lately. I ignore Him, but I don’t actually think He’s not there. Watching. Disappointed.  I can almost hear Him. “I’ve made it so clear Noah. It’s up to you now. If you love Me, you’ll give up these questions. All you need is Me.” But You promised me so much more! Friendship? That’s a joke. My closest friend said that if I talk about these things she feels pressure. SHE feels a burden. How sad for her. What about my other closest friend? I mean, he literally looks me, ME, in the face and says shit like, “Life is so hard, I’m always gonna be alone.” Fuck you man. How insensitive can a person be?

I am sick. I can’t give up being gay. But I can’t give up God either. Lord, have mercy.

why I’m here

I’ve known that I wanted needed to start writing for awhile now. In the words of the number one bro himself, “I was with book, as mother is with child.” Of course, I am not with book. That’s far too put together and planned out and complex for what I am. I am with rants, questions, existential crises, spiritual anxieties, half-hearted prayers, whole-hearted prayers, unwanted feelings, hard truths that I can’t let go of and don’t even know if they’re true, and relationship issues. That is what I am with.

So let’s start with what put me over the edge enough to actually sit down and start writing. There are two things of which I am sure. Pay attention, they’re important:

  1. I am gay. As in, attracted-to-other-men gay.
  2. I am Christian. As in, believe the Bible and take this shit seriously and holy-crap-a-Man-was-actually-raised-from-the-dead Christian.

So you see the problem, dear reader.

I thought I had reconciled these two things. Maybe I’ll write a post about that one day. For now, it will suffice to say that I thought I was perfectly okay knowing that I had to be celibate for life in order to follow Christ and be gay. Marriage-be-damned, I’d thought. Marriage is for the weak. If Paul is to be believed, God will love me more if I’m #singleforlife (literally). Okay, that’s an exaggeration, but I did think that I would be okay with not being married or ever thinking about being married and never having anyone who was my own and being alone forever. Sorry, I’m being dramatic again.

Lately, I am not so sure that I have reconciled these two things. So many weird circumstances have led me to question everything. A friend and pastor I knew came out. Then that same night I met the friend of a friend who I swear has to be gay but is too scared to tell anyone and he was so cute and I wanted to tell him that it would be okay. Then me and a friend each made a Tinder profile as a joke to see what kind of matches we would get, and then I realized it wasn’t so much a joke to me and I really wouldn’t mind meeting a guy who was also into guys because there is, I was realizing, a distinct lack of guys-who-are-into-other-guys in my life. And then I was racked with guilt and so I deleted Tinder but within a few days I was back on because I just want, at the very least, a friend who I can relate to. I love my friends, they’re so important to me, but lately I’ve realized that my closest friends can’t fulfill some of the emotional needs I have and I really am trying not to blame them for that. But nevertheless I’ve avoided everyone who wasn’t my family lately and I keep checking Tinder and I just want someone to talk to who is gay.

Then I went with one of my oldest friends (who would never question why I was on Tinder, God bless) to see Into the Woods because hell, I wanted to do something fun that my other friends rolled their eyes at (which was hurtful, by the way). I forgot how that stupid, beautiful musical ends, with the lesson from the story being “hey, there really aren’t any right answers, all you have is the people around you.” And then I thought about how that isn’t enough. I need a right answer. Why does the Lord require this of me? I’m not strong enough to not have a person. Another thing that happened at the theatre that night was that I really really liked one of the guys in the cast because he was cute and funny and let’s face it, if he’s that good at musical theatre he probably falls into that category of guys-who-are-into-other-guys. And then my friend and I made found him on Instagram because we’re creepy like that, and later when I was home I went several years in to his old photos, because I’m even creepier like that. And what did I see but that he has been dating the same guy for like 3 years. And they look so happy in every picture. And I remind myself that Instagram is just a highlight reel of someone’s life and they can’t really be that happy, right? But I didn’t believe myself. Sure, no one is happy all the time, but I had no reason to think that these two guys weren’t satisfied with each other.

And I’m supposed to be satisfied with being single forever? Why would God ask that of anyone who didn’t want to choose it freely? Why?

And then I thought maybe He isn’t asking this of me. There are plenty of people who I believe are truly Christians and truly know Jesus and are truly homosexual and are in relationships that are loving and satisfying and sanctifying.

But then I think that I have indeed read the Bible. That God indeed does not seem to condone gay sex. But then I think, “Okay, no sex, but what about cuddling? Handholding? Being roommates forever? Would God deny me this?”

This is all I want. A friend. A boyfriend who I don’t sleep with, or marry. But does other boyfriend things. Like going to the movies together on Friday night. Like praying together. Someone who is a part of my life and we go to each other’s parents’ houses on holidays. I hurt as I type these things because I want it so badly.

I just want this friend. I will keep looking for this friend. I will pray to God to send me this friend.

I’m not sure writing this helped. But at least now it’s out there. As rocky as my relationship with Him feels right now, praise be to God.