I used to be a Lesbian.

There, I said it. For a year or so, I was in a relationship with a girl, at 16.

She was much older and looked just like a boy. Everyone in her workplace thought she was a boy. Her father wished he had a son, and she didn’t want to disappoint. She called me princess, and made me feel very loved. Growing up in church, I knew that the relationship wasn’t right, but I justified it. It was all about loving a person for who they are inside, and it didn’t matter what they were outside. That was what I told myself. Eventually I knew I had to break it off at some point because I knew I wanted a family, I wanted children, and I knew that despite this feeling of being “in love”, this was not going to last and there would be no happily ever after.

Then I knew it was a “sin”. It didn’t sit well with me and it had always made me uneasy. I stopped going to church as much because it just made me feel guilty. I figured that I would just avoid God altogether since I was disobeying his laws.

What is sin? Sin is anything that falls short of the glory of God. Anything that falls short of the glory and perfection of his creation. Yes, he made us perfect. He made Adam, and said it was good. He made us IN HIS IMAGE, but he also gave us the freedom of choice. Sin is anything that isn’t good for us, that hurts us, that goes against the DNA of who he has made us to be – LIKE HIM.

Everyday I am amazed, at how much my baby girl looks like both my husband and I. How does God do such a great job at combining two people into one perfect little human being? Just as how I look at my baby girl everyday and am so in love with her and see myself in her, that is how God sees us. That is his father’s heart for us. He loves us so much, that he gave his one and only son up, FOR US. If there’s any definition of love, it is the cross, and the cross is grace.

Paul himself said, and I too feel this way – like we are the worst sinners of all! Because when we know how amazing the grace of God is, when we know that we seriously don’t deserve any of his love, when we know that we definitely could not have earned our right standing before God based on what we do – it’s hard to feel like others have sinned more than you – because “we all have sinned and fallen short”.

I’m sharing this because a friend asked me about my views on homosexuality and the opposition stance against the pink dot movement in Singapore.

I have quite a few LGBT friends, and I love them, A LOT. I know the path they have chosen (on who to love and be with) would not complete them in the way God has made us to be complete in – a family unit of man and wife, and the ability to conceive and have children in their image. Does this hurt God and does this make him sad? I believe so. Does this make him stop loving them? I don’t think so.

Is homosexuality a sin? Yes, because it isn’t the way God designed for us to live, and it clearly says in the bible that it is – along with – a proud heart, a lying tongue, eating too much (gluttony), being drunk, undressing a woman/man in your mind without actually doing the act, hating your brother/friend (it is akin to murder according to Jesus) and much more….

Am I making light of homosexuality? No I am not. The point I am trying to get across is that all sins are sins. There are sins that can be seen and there are sins that you can hide – are we in a position to judge if others have greater sins that us? As Jesus said to the crowd that wanted to stone the adulterous woman, “May the one without sin cast the first stone”, and to the adulterous woman, “who is left to condemn you? Neither do I condemn you, go and sin no more”.

See, it is through NO condemnation that we can SIN NO MORE.

I draw a parallel to my ex-addiction to smoking. Did my desire and addiction for smoking dwindle as loving friends and family “nagged” me to quit? Did the lung cancer ads on the cigarette boxes stop me? Did the government’s new rules of “no smoking in this and that place” stop me? Did ostracization from non-smokers or dirty looks from religious Christians stop me?

None of the above.

Smoking is and was an addiction for me after all. It wasn’t till I got embraced by the people at this church called Tuesday Group – who said they didn’t condemn me for my smoking – that I continued to go and grow in my relationship with God. It wasn’t till I went to New Creation Church and learnt about God’s grace that I made me realize that God still loves me and that I have right standing with him not because of anything that I do, but because of what Jesus has done. It wasn’t till I reminded myself that I was still loved, still righteous and that this SIN and addiction had no control over me (Romans 6:14-23) because I am under his grace (unearned, unmerited favor and love) not under law (blessed if you obey ALL and I mean ALL the laws not just some. Cursed if you break even one of the laws) and that I was a New Creation, a new person in Christ – The old has passed and the new has come. (2 Cor 5:17)

So if I was in Singapore would I be rallying and protesting against the Pink Dot Movement? I know its not the same thing to compare the addiction of smoking to choosing your life partners but since I am already drawing parallels – I have close friends that smoke and have same-sex partners and I love them all the same. Since they are already smoking and being in those relationships, would I be happy for them if they were able to smoke wherever they wanted to or be legally recognized as being in a relationship to make their lives easier and to be seen as one in the eyes of the law? I think I actually would be happy for them.

But do I want smoking and legalized same-sex marriages to be taught in schools as perfectly good and normal to my children, and to be socially accepted and taught in society and our culture that my children grow up thinking that is the way we were made to be and this is how life should be like – that smoking is good for your health and body and that it would give you long life and be a blessing to your family and loved ones? – No, I would not.

The Christians protesting the pink dot movement might be living from the same virtues as Jesus, but would Jesus have been part of the protest?

All I saw in the bible was Jesus hanging out with the lowest of society’s outcasts –tax collectors, prostitutes, adulterers, lepers – what everyone would call the greatest sinners of them all. It was the religious Pharisees that he wasn’t too happy being around – those whom felt that they knew the law and had kept them all, those who felt that they were “holier” and “better Christians”. It was to them that Jesus was trying to drive across the point that it wasn’t just your outwardly actions that mattered, but even the thoughts in your mind and what as truly in your heart.

I used to read those chapters thinking it was TOO HARD to be a Christian because even my thoughts were sinful, it was TOO HARD to try to please God and to not sin, so I gave up altogether. What I didn’t know was that Jesus was trying to say… stop trying to justify yourself by your own efforts because it will never be good enough.

We will always miss the mark of God’s glory if we try to be right with him based on our own good deeds. For we ALL have fallen short, and Jesus is the only way that we can have right standing with God. Through believing in what he did for us and who he is and allowing him to love us, we start to see ourselves for whom we were really made to be – a reflection of him, “his image”.

My friends, no matter where you are on this journey of life and whichever stage you are in, all I know is this – we are all a “works-in-progress”.

I am praying that everyday, there will be a renewing of your thoughts to realize how loved you are by God, and that this love and his grace will set you free from whatever that is holding you from being all that he has made you to be.

He loves you with an everlasting love.

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