Increasingly, the world is making it more difficult to leave the gay lifestyle.  Those who desire to leave are ridiculed and urged to reconsider.  More than ever, it requires a clean break from the voices of liberalism and seduction.  Gay friends become tools of the enemy, bringing doubt and fear.  The person leaving homosexuality has just entered a spiritual battleground and their soul is the prize.  The apostle Peter spoke of times like these: “For you have spent enough time in the past doing what pagans choose to do.  They think it strange that you do not plunge with them into the same flood of dissipation, and they heap abuse on you.  But they will have to give account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead.” (1 Peter 4:3-5)


If you are to know victory, you must fight for your life.  The battle has intensified, but it still can be won. The victory is a miracle of God, but that miracle begins when a decisive decision is made for change, and with a submitted heart that will not put roadblocks in God's way.  As you make your way to repentance, baptism in Jesus Name, and the infilling of the Holy Ghost, you will begin a journey of overcoming: a journey of change. This new journey and this new life will conflict with worldly thought and it will run contrary to self-gratification.  In exchange, it will bring the peace that only God can bring.


BROKENNESS:  Change begins when the heart is right before God.  “The Lord is close to those whose hearts are breaking; He rescues those who are humbly sorry for their sins.” (Ps, 34:18)  Many want change, but do not find it because change comes from a repentant heart.  None of the other seemingly good motivations will start the change process.  The next word always seems to war with our pride: that word is “SURRENDER.”  There must be a willingness to allow God to lead, to take you wherever He will, as a Shepherd leads his sheep.  We cannot tell God how to change us or when He will change us.  We must develop trusting obedience.  It is being absolutely sure that God intends only good for your life and you need have no fear of His guidance and direction.  One must contrast control of their life with God's control.  If you are honest, God can do the better job.


ALL LINKS TO THE PAST MUST BE CUT:  Whenever we make radical changes in our life, we must eradicate all influences that will work against our new desires and goals.  Unless we are diligent about this, we will find ourselves in a kind of push-pull existence that brings frustration and despair.  Every object that brings up associations from the past must go.  What we leave behind is more than objects or sexual acting out: it is a mind-set.  We have gone from darkness to light: from impurity to purity and that purity must be evident in every aspect of our lives.  While we are still “in the world,” we are no longer “of the world.”  “If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.” (John 15:19)


GIVE THANKS: The lack of a positive attitude makes the road to victory far more difficult that it was ever intended to be.  Because we may not be at the exact place “we think” we should be, we moan and groan about what God hasn't done, disregarding completely everything that God has already accomplished in our lives.  He will complete what He started. (Phil. 1:6)  When we are positive about God we pave the way for a smoother transition from old lifestyle to new.  When we are negative, we become self-involved which leads to isolation and depression.  When we are positive, we are more outgoing and able to relate better to others.


SPIRITUAL WARFARE:  The enemy has a deep investment in homosexuality.  He is the father of the lie: “once gay, always gay.”  Homosexuality is one area that satan has rarely been challenged.  Now, homosexuality is being resisted and overcome.  Of course the enemy will try to cover up any proof that change is possible.  He will attempt to destroy those who witness to change.  He has a special interest in setting snares uniquely designed for those who have left his kingdom.  Spiritual battles will come.  Worship is your key to victory.  Satan desires our worship, and what he hates most is when we worship God.  We gain ground over the enemy when all his trials and temptations lead us into WORSHIP OF GOD.  Remember this the next time temptations surround you.


SEEK YE FIRST THE KINGDOM OF GOD:  Many individuals who are coming out of homosexuality often go before the Lord, praying: “Lord, fix the gay issues FIRST, and THEN I'll be able to serve You.”  What they are seeking is to have all of their same-sex attractions, thoughts, memories, and temptations completely changed and wiped out.  In reality, just the opposite is true.  We have been given the impression that orientation change and reparative therapy are the solutions.  Sanctification is not getting rid of our temptations, but pursuing holiness in the midst of them.  If our goal is making people straight, then we are practicing a false gospel.  The opposite of “homosexuality” is not “heterosexuality.”  It’s HOLINESS!  We seek and serve the Lord FIRST, and THEN!  In that process of growing stronger and closer to Him, He does the “fixing” of all our issues: not just the gay issues.  While there will be times it seems God is doing nothing about our sexual struggles, the truth is He's busy fixing deeper rooted, underlying issues.  Homosexual behaviors and actions are actually nothing more than the “surface symptom” of deeper underlying emotional and spiritual issues: issues such as old hurts, pains, and emotional wounds: anger, unforgiveness, rebellion, pride, selfishness, etc.  As we grow in the Lord and as those underlying issues are healed, the surface symptoms begin to decrease and slowly fade away. 


LISTEN TO GOD: NOT to your flesh, not to memories, and not to temptations.  Every person on the face of the earth will have unwanted thoughts pop into their head: they will have memories from the past and you can count on temptations coming your way as you serve the Lord.  You must understand that NONE of those are sin.  They become sin if we CHOOSE to hold on to them, allowing lust to begin, and then action.  The lust of the flesh and the lust of our eyes are the sin.  The old enemy will be right there, telling you lie after lie.  He will try telling you that the thoughts, memories, and temptations are sin, “so you might as will go ahead and go further because you have already sinned.”  He will also lie to you and tell you that because you do experience these thoughts, you are not set free and you will not make it.  It is in these times that you remember to rebuke the lies and continue to WORSHIP THE LORD.


SUPPORT: “Lone Ranger” Christianity does not work and is not God's design.  God never intended us to walk through the change process alone.  You will need support from people who have come out of homosexuality as well as from those who were never involved in the gay lifestyle.  You will need support and friendships with both men and women.  You will always need some kind of support group, and a church cell group can help fill that need.  Honesty and openness will be necessary.  It is essential your pastor knows what you are struggling with.  Often a pastor can seek out others who will be supportive to you as well.  God is pleased when we courageously step out in faith and take relational risks.


NEVER GIVE UP: Most people have no idea what it means to cling to Christ.  They have the false belief they can clean up their own lives, and then present their clean lives to Christ as a gift to Him.  Sadly we just don't have the power within ourselves to lead a sinless life.  How difficult it is to fully understand the victory we enjoy is not our victory, but Christ's.  The victory was won at the cross, and we simply plug into that victory by our faith and belief in Christ.  When temptation comes, when we slip, stumble, or even fall, through Christ, we GET BACK UP, NO MATTER WHAT.  The decision to leave the homosexual lifestyle must be a decision made for life.  There will come many times of testing, but we must maintain a “hell or high water” kind of determination that will carry us through the rough times no matter what.  There can be no attitude of “if it doesn't work out in a year's time, then I will go back.”  While God may test us, God doesn't respond well when we test Him.  He never works on our time schedule, and completely ignores all our conditions.  God will not bargain with us.  God works on a trust basis.  He rewards our faith and trust. 


While God could change us in an instant, He has instead chosen to change us gradually: At times we all need to be reminded that perhaps we do not need the thorn in our flesh removed: perhaps what we really need is MORE OF HIS GRACE!  2 Corinthians 12 tells us that “IN MY WEAKNESS HE IS STRONG” and that “HIS GRACE IS SUFFICIENT!”  It is a long, difficult road and there is a cross to bear.  God allows tests of our loyalty, but when we fail the tests, His love comforts us and His Holy Spirit brings us instruction on how we ought to live.  He has provided everything we need to live an overcoming and a blessed life.  We want the easy road, and change is never easy.  There is a cross to bear and a price to pay.  “In your struggle against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood” (Heb. 12:4)  Take courage: God rewards our obedience.  Give God your all, and He will surely give you the desires of your heart.  “And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace who imparts all blessing and favor, who has called you to His own eternal glory in Christ Jesus, will Himself complete and make you what you ought to be, establish and ground you securely, and strengthen and settle you.” (1 Peter 1:10 Amp. Bible)

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