My closeted testimony

by Jamie

My story starts around four years ago near the end of my first year at Grammar school. I was a young and very atheist boy who hated God and all to do with him. I always took every chance to put down Christians by telling them how stupid they were, and how they should just open their eyes and stop following the herd. I remained like this until around third or fourth year but I'll get to that soon enough.

Around the end of first year, I met a boy I will never forget. I'd never really noticed him before but from that day I could never not notice him again. He was perfect. He was beautiful, smart, funny, nice and I instantly fell in love with him. The only problem (in my eyes at the time anyway) was the fact that he was one of the most Christian boys I've ever met, and very homophobic.

Not much happened for a while. I was always thinking about him and staring at him in the corridors and changing rooms like a teenage girl stares at her celebrity crush. We got to know each other through rugby and became friends, not good friends. I would have to say just slightly more than acquaintances. Not good enough friends to say Hi in the corridor but good enough to say Hi outside of school if that says anything.

After a few years I matured a bit faster than my friendship group in school and got bored with them. I wanted new friends. I tried a few different groups, the popular kids, the normal kids and I eventually settled with the musical kids. I went up to music every day except Friday. On Friday all the musical kids went to S.U. - Scripture Union - and I didn't want anything to do with that! This mindset didn't last long and I went to S.U. to see what all the hype was about.

I got interested. I thought maybe I should learn about what I'm always denouncing as rubbish so I did. I went to Scripture Union for a few months and as I'm sure you've guessed, the love of my life went with his friendship group, kindly dubbed the Bible-bashers. As I still wasn't completely happy with my friends I started hanging out with the Bible-bashers and this boy. For the sake of ease we shall call him Matthew.

I was put in the same group as Matthew for Duke of Edinburgh, and we grew closer with time. The Duke of Edinburg Award Scheme is offered as an extra-curricular activity at some schools. I ate lunch with Matthew every day because I wanted to be close to him, to see him every day. He told me about God, how he gave his only Son for me and how he loved me. I slowly became more and more curious. One Sunday afternoon I was sitting listening to music. I prayed to God for a sign. I asked for it through my iPhone for some reason and that's what I got.

I pressed shuffle on music and out of my 750 songs, the one Christian song I had came on. That's a 1 in 750 chance or a 0.013% chance. I thought I'd take the 99.87% chance of it being God and I prayed for forgiveness. I asked for Him to enter my heart and accepted Jesus as my Savior.

I told Matthew a week later and he was so happy for me. Skip forward one year to February 2013. I went through a lot of tough stuff which ultimately left me with clinical depression. Being a teenager is not easy. I hated everything, my life included. I locked the world out and went quiet. The only reason I went to school was to see Matthew and hear his voice. He kept me strong. That's also the only reason I didn't kill myself. I didn't want to die and be without him.

I got through all that, two months of it. Since that happened I have prayed every single day. I got baptized and I feel closer to God than ever before. I know God never gives us any more than we can handle and he was with me the whole time. I remained strong with his love and protection.

God has touched my life since then as well. I had gone a bit haywire with drinking and smoking. I got very drunk regularly and smoked as well with other friends. The day before my baptism, I was sitting with a glass of vodka about to take a drink when I got a text from Matthew saying he wasn't coming to my baptism because of the fact that I drank regularly. It shook me to the core and I threw the drink out.

God didn't want me drinking or smoking. A few weeks ago I was at my cousin's for a house warming party. She offered me a coke and I asked for something exciting in it. A few minutes later mum came over and gave me a plain coke. My mum had made it instead of my cousin and she just gave me plain coke. God stopped me drinking that day as well.

I have been told my whole life that being gay goes against God, but my love for Matthew is what got me closer to God. It's a gift from God that has changed my entire life for the better. Being gay is what helped make it possible for my life and my soul to be saved because God used my friendship with Matthew to point me to Jesus. God affects our life through those around us, and we don't even know when he is touching our life. He wants us to decide for ourselves about getting saved.

That is why God gave us free will. He loves us more than anything but a lot of decisions God leaves up to us. God made me gay so that I would fall in love with Matthew and get to know God through him. For me, this is proof enough that God loves gay people and doesn't think it's an abomination.

Now all I need to do is convince Matthew to stop being homophobic and accept me when I eventually come out, and maybe even he is closeted as well. God has touched each of our lives and sometimes we don't even know it. Maybe you reading this is God showing you something you've never seen before.

"I have faith in my God, I trust in him wholly and I believe in him wholly. I love The Lord, for he heard my voice; he heard my cry for mercy. Because he turned his ear to me, I will call on him as long as I live." - Psalms 116:1

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