Dear Friends, 

I think we can all agree that this is a tough topic to talk about. Few issues in our time are as polarizing as the topics of same sex attraction and gender identity. Unfortunately, a lot of the conversations on the topic end up leading to divisiveness and anger. I’m convinced that there is a better way to handle this. 

I recently shared a message at Kingsland on what the Bible says about same-sex attraction. As I was preparing it, I was reminded over and over of how many ways I fall short of God’s design in my own life. Sharing on this topic - and any topic - always brings me to a place of humility, as I recognize that all of us are desperate for the grace of God. So let’s make a deal: let’s agree to look honestly at the truths of the Bible as well as the scientific and sociological evidence rather than whatever social pressures we are feeling from either side. Let’s agree that the very best place for anyone to find themselves is living in the center of God’s will for their lives - and that means living in obedience to His Word. Let’s agree that we all have issues to deal with, and let’s be willing to allow God to show us a better way related to those issues as opposed to just pointing out the issues of others.

We’re called by God to live in unity with other Christians: 

"Now I urge you, brothers and sisters, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree in what you say, that there be no divisions among you, and that you be united with the same understanding and the same conviction." (1 Corinthians 1:10, CSB)

We’re also called by God to demonstrate Christ’s love to those around us: 

"Therefore, as God’s chosen ones, holy and dearly loved, put on compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience, 13 bearing with one another and forgiving one another if anyone has a grievance against another. Just as the Lord has forgiven you, so you are also to forgive. 14 Above all, put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity." (Colossians 3:12–14, CSB)

A part of demonstrating true love is seeking - and telling - the truth, even when it’s uncomfortable: 

“Brothers and sisters, if someone is overtaken in any wrongdoing, you who are spiritual, restore such a person with a gentle spirit, watching out for yourselves so that you also won’t be tempted.” (Galatians 6:1, CSB)

We’re called to love people, but love them by sharing the truth in love. To rob them of the truth is the opposite of love.     

As I shared recently, Kingsland is famous for going to the “hard places” geographically – we travel to some of the hardest to reach locations in the world to share the Gospel. Let’s be willing to go to the “hard places” philosophically as well. 

The following is a list of useful resources from which you can draw insights into some of the most complex questions related to the topic today. I pray that they are a help to you as you gain a deeper understanding of the complexities of this topic. 

I join with Susan Sowell, the Director of our Family Freedom Ministry, in praying for you. You can read her prayer here. I refuse to accept that we must choose between the pursuit of truth and the freedom to love one another. Jesus chose both. We can too. 

For Grace and Truth, 
Pastor Ryan Rush 


A Night of Hope

 The following is a list of useful resources from which you can draw insights into some of the most complex questions related to the topic: 

THE WAY OF HOPE 
This is Melissa Fisher’s website. Melissa has a wonderful story of God’s love - as well as some insights into how the Church at times unintentionally pushes people away at their times of deepest need. 

PODCAST FROM BIOLA
This podcast from the “Think Biblically” series at Biola University includes a conversation between Sean McDowell and John Stonestreet. They offer insightful responses to many of today’s most common dilemmas related to these issues. 

FOCUS ON THE FAMILY
Focus on the Family offers some clear and compassionate resources related to multiple facets of the issues related to sexuality.

YUAN FAMILY TESTIMONY
A testimony from the Yuan Family, who found a “grace and truth” way forward to walk with their son who revealed to his parents his same sex attraction.

HOPEQUEST
HopeQuest is the ministry of Troy and Melissa Haas, who have championed helping couples navigate through challenges and find freedom in Jesus Christ. They offer some biblical and impactful resources here.

PASTOR MIKE GOEKE RESOURCES
A series of articles by Pastor Mike Goeke, a man who has found freedom in Jesus Christ and shares a unique perspective of God’s faithfulness.

FAMILY FREEDOM RESOURCE CENTER
This is the Family Freedom Resource Center here at Kingsland. We have several resources - and opportunities for pursuing freedom with others who know what it means to experience God’s grace.


Dear One, 

As your sister in Christ, I pray God’s blessings over you as you read this prayer. You are deeply loved by your Father in Heaven.

You are not a disappointment to God. God has not rejected you. God has not abandoned you. God has not turned away from you. The truth is God is pursuing you. God is in the midst of your pain and brokenness with a passion to heal your heart. God sees the battles that wage against your soul and longs to deliver you. God knows the thoughts and images that shame you and make you want to hide. God knows every time you’ve tried to change and every time you were defeated. He knows that you are weary. He knows that you doubt. He knows that you feel alone. He knows how desperate you feel at times. He knows you. He knows your heart and He loves you. God loves you just the way you are and right where you are. God’s love for you is so great that He would give everything to heal your heart and set you free. So that is exactly what He did. God gave you His Son, Jesus, to take your pain, your struggles, your brokenness and your sins. You have a Savior. You have a Healer. You have a Deliverer. You have a Redeemer. You have a friend. You have a Father who loves you.

Lord, I pray for the one reading this prayer to be set free. I pray that every lie the enemy has told them about you, about themselves, about their sexual identity and about their ability to change be broken off of their lives in the name of Jesus. Jesus, I pray that you would open the eyes of their hearts to see the truth of your love for them and the power of the Gospel. Lord, I pray that as they are reading this prayer, that the Holy Spirit would reveal His power and presence to set them free. Lord, I pray that you would bring healing to the pain and brokenness. Lord, uproot the lies of the enemy and heal where the lies have caused deep pain. Jesus, break the chains of darkness off of every man, woman and child and set them free to receive the healing and freedom that you gave them at the Cross.

Lord, help this man, woman or child to bring their heart fully to you. Help them to confess their need for you to heal them and set them free. Help them to have the courage to confess their sins to you. Help them to have the grace to see that your love and the Cross is greater than any sin, addiction and darkness.

Your Prayer:
Lord, I confess that I have been hiding from you. I confess that I struggle with thoughts, images and feelings that are not pure. I confess that I’ve committed sins in my heart, my mind and my actions. Lord, I confess that I’ve allowed the enemy to lie to me and I’ve come into agreement with the enemy’s lies. Lord, I need your help. Lord, I need you to give me the courage to ask for help. I need you to give me a desire to change. I need you to help me believe that you love me, care about me and want to heal me and set me free. Lord, I bring my pain and brokenness to you today and ask you to lead me to a path of healing and freedom in my life. I ask this in the name of Jesus. Amen. 

You are deeply loved. The following are some verses from the Bible about how God loves you and your identity as a child of God. We want to help you experience healing and freedom through the grace of Jesus. Pastor Ryan listed resources for you on this page but you can also email me at ssowell@kingsland.org. We have a team of people in our Freedom Ministry who would be honored to get to pray with you and help you.

I am fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14).

Nothing can separate me from the love of God in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:38-39).

God has lavished His great love on me and I am His child (1 John 3:1).

I have been called out of darkness and into God’s wonderful light to praise Him (1 Peter 2:9).

Christ set me free so that I could live in freedom (Galatians 5:13).

I am a New Creation! I have been given a new life in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17).

God’s love for me is great; His compassions never fail; they are new every morning (Lamentations 3:22-23).

In Grace,

Susan Sowell
Director of Family Freedom Resource Center
ssowell@kingsland.org
281.675.7862

Download a copy of Susan's Prayer