How can Christians reach out to someone with same-sex attractions?

“Christians should love all peoples – homosexual or not.”

~Alan Chambers, author of  God’s Grace and the Homosexual Next Door

  • Change yourself before others. If you anticipate awkwardness, it means you need to deal first with your own attitudes and feelings. No one can force a person to repent of sin or change. Exercise grace and patience for the person to be won over by God’s loving truth.
  •  Bless and embrace. Lovingly welcome people with same-sex attractions. The most effective way to battle the shame and rejection homosexual people face is to look for opportunities to invite them to be part of your life. Take them out to coffee; invite them to participate in your family meal or activities; ask them honest, open-ended questions on how they are doing each time you meet.

  • Offer unconditional, life-giving friendship. A listening ear and empathetic heart on your part are invaluable. An individual involved in homosexuality has often been deeply wounded, even by well-meaning but misinformed Christians. Be willing to listen and befriend. Be the sort of friend a homosexual person can feel free to open up to without fear of rejection and judgment. It is important that help is extended unconditionally to all who are sexually broken, regardless of their willingness or readiness to change.
  • Be honest about your own struggles, fears and temptations. This can help them feel more like “one of the girls/boys”. Even if they struggle with different issues, your homosexual friend will learn how to live out principles of accountability, forgiveness and grace as they are exemplified in your life.
  • Point to Jesus, not to heterosexuality. Like all sinners, homosexual people cannot change by themselves; they need the power of Christ. As He begins the work of sanctification, He will highlight areas in their life which must be surrendered to Him.

Our deliverance from homosexuality comes from a Person, rather than a method… the interesting thing about the change process is that change itself is not our goal. Change is what results as we pursue a far more important and compelling goal: knowing, loving and “beholding” Jesus.

~ Frank Worthen, Love in Action

  • Pray unceasingly. Ask God to pursue your homosexual friend or loved one relentlessly, bearing in mind that God’s ultimate goal is not punishment for their sin, but repentance and restoration to wholeness. Pray for God to work in your heart and life so you can be a channel of God’s grace to help them live as He has designed.

The road to healing for a homosexual person is a relational one.1When the homosexual person is treated the way you would want to be treated, they perceive love from you that undercuts the forces which empower the homosexual impulse.

 

Endnotes
1 Love Won Out series: When a Loved One Says, “I’m Gay.” (Focus on the Family, 2002)