Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Is this what they call prayer?

Last week I took an extended, 4-day long weekend, and went home to Regina.

I also went to the Bible Camp that I used to work for, and still view as one of the most significant places of my life. One of those spaces that made me feel connected to something larger than myself.

Upon visiting it, for the first time as an out-gay man, looking to visit some friends working for the camp administration, I came to realize that I've turned my back on something that is of great importance to me. Relationships.

Months ago, perhaps almost a year ago, after a friend of mine found this blog (well, was actually directed to this blog by a poorly placed comment on his own) and confirmed his suspicions that I was gay, I admitted to him that I was stepping away from a lot of relationships so that I wouldn't ever have to tell them that I was gay.

Including in these relationships were the dozens of young men who saw in me a passion for Christ's justice and a refusal to accept anything other than the ideal pursuit of economic equality and legal/social parity for all peoples.

I am certain that they feel somewhat betrayed by my actions.

And rightfully so. For I never gave them the chance to love me as I am by allowing them to discover that I am gay and choosing to get over it anyways (as I would hope many of them would). I lost my faith in my friends, and chose fear instead of love. In doing so, I have confused many of them and almost certainly caused many of them to direct their faith towards people and influences that I find less desirable. In doing so, I have broken promises to my friends.

Forgive me Father, for I have sinned. I have lead your children astray in the interest of taking the easier road. I have been selfish and committed the greatest of all destructive deeds - breaking hearts, souls, and relationships. Have I learned nothing of love?

God, if you exist and if I am prepared to allow you to exist, please allow me to fix some of these relationships so that I can help these young men and women become the great adults that I know they can be.


  1. Wow, this is a loaded post.
    I don't think it's realistic for you to take on as much responsibility for other people's well-being as you seem prepared to do. It's great to live your life as an example to others, but you should never have to compromise yourself in the process. And consider the amount of pressure you put yourself under.
    Go easier on yourself, Neal. Sure, maybe you acted out of fear, but I can't imagine anyone condemning you for that when they understand why. You did the best you knew how at the time, and, now that you know better, you'll do better.
    Thanks for your honesty and for sharing.

  2. Okay, I see where the wisdom came from, and the love and compassion, too.