For as long as I could remember, I had not felt like a boy. I so clearly remember that time when I was 8 years old, up in my second floor bedroom, sitting on my bed alone and crying out to God, “God, please, change me into a girl. It seems I have everything it takes to be a girl and nothing it takes to be a boy. Please, change me into a girl.”
Even at that age, I said that prayer with every fiber of my soul. I meant it. I knew God could do it – no doubt. After all, if He made the “mistake” (making me a boy), then He could fix it. I made my request; I gave Him the chance.
I woke up the next day and I was still a boy. “Ok, God, I prayed that prayer knowing full well that you could change me into a girl but you didn’t. Evidently, You are determined that I remain a boy. I have no idea how I am going to do this (be a boy), but okay.” I accepted that God’s plan was for me to be a boy – a male. But accepting my gender assignment didn’t mean liking it.
A decade went by during which I forced myself to do things that other boys were doing around me – homecoming, prom, socializing, etc. One exception was sports. I was not into sports. And I had great difficulty building romantic relationships with females. I feared males and at the same time I admired them. Although I had accepted my gender role, my struggle with gender identification continued. I felt feminine in comparison to other males and that difference caused me to feel the opposite of them. Further, I also learned that by taking a feminine posture, I could obtain the connection that I longed for with males. There was tension in my psyche, and that tension led to depression. Would I ever feel like a male?
Even though I had believed in God for years, it was not until my early twenties that I met Jesus as the Living God—my Redeemer, Restorer and Friend. It was at this time that I entered into a dynamic relationship with Jesus as Lord and Savior. I trusted Him to know me better than I knew myself. After all, I kept telling myself, “He is The Creator. He created me. Surely, He knew what was best for me.” I was going to follow His design and intent for me as a male no matter what. With the encouragement and prayers of Christ-following, non-judgmental friends and who exemplified His character, I surrendered to His infinite wisdom and His guidance.
I figured that if God had made me a male (DNA and genitals), then I had better make peace with that fact or live in misery. And I was determined not to live in misery. He was going to have to help me live the way I was – male.
Upon my entering into this relationship, I remember so well the thought that flooded my heart: “Jesus you are the first man I am trusting enough not to hurt me, and I am going to let you love me.”
Two thoughts flowed out of that commitment. One, I knew that my view of men up to that point was that ‘they are hurtful.’ Secondly, I was at the beginning of recovering my masculine identity as Jesus became the masculine source of a loving relationship. He would be my reference point to then move into healthy relationships with other males.
I continued to be open to His guidance and directives as lead by His Spirit and matched by His Word. He showed me my own heart. (He was not at all concerned with my exterior.) Unknown to my finite mind and the finite knowledge of others, The Creator revealed numerous postures of my heart that infected my gender identity. He showed me my sin-sick heart. I had been infected by the Fall, by my own self-focus, and by other fallen people.
One result of my fallen nature that I needed to surrender was contempt.
To be continued