Bridge of Grace and Truth

LGBT+

Foundations

Discover what Grace Church believes about LGBT+ and why.

Journey of Hope

Join the movement of those whose journey includes LGBT+, by embracing your true identity in Christ.

Faithful Journey

Receive encouragement, insight and guidance as one who loves a person who is LGBT+.

Encouragement, resources and community for all who are impacted by LGBT+.
Share your story. Ask questions.
Belong.Join the Movement.

Foundations: Discover what Grace Church believes about LGBT+ and why.

What Grace Church Believes and Why

Christian & Missionary Alliance’ Stance on Human Sexuality The official statement of The Christian and Missionary Alliance

What the Bible Says About Same-Gender Sexual Intimacy The sole sexualized relationship that is upheld by the Bible is one man and one woman within marriage.

What The Bible Says About Grace The grace of God is for any and all peoples, regardless of their fallen condition.

Grace Church’ Position on LGBT+ In today’s secular culture we feel it’s necessary to explain not only what we believe about LGBT+ matters but why we believe.

The Kind of Church We Aim To Be

Is Grace an “Affirming church”? 

People to Be Loved: Homosexuality and Grace In this video, Preston Sprinkle challenges how we look at those living with SSA.

Sprinkle, Preston People to Be Loved: Why Homosexuality Is Not Just an Issue
In a manner that appeals to a scholarly and lay-audience alike, Preston takes on difficult questions such as how should the church treat people struggling with same-sex attraction? Is same-sex attraction a product of biological or societal factors or both? How should the church think about larger cultural issues, such as gay marriage, gay pride, and whether intolerance over LGBT amounts to racism? How (or if) Christians should do business with LGBT persons and supportive companies?

Is Your Church a Safe Place for Those Who Experience Same-Sex Attraction?

Melissa Fisher, John Burke The Way of Hope: A Fresh Perspective on Sexual Identity, Same-Sex Marriage, and the Church With deep understanding born from her own painful experiences, Melissa Fisher shows that somewhere between the extremes of condemning and condoning is compassion. In this book, she aims to equip the church to make a positive difference in the lives of those hurting from relational or sexual brokenness. Perfect for pastors, parents, siblings, and friends of the ten million people in America who identify as LGBTQ, who long to love them well.

What Others with Similar Beliefs are Saying

Yuan, Christopher Holy Sexuality and the Gospel
Holy Sexuality is chastity in singleness or faithfulness in marriage. God has uniquely qualified Dr. Yuan with personal experience and theological training to winsomely present a robust theology of sexuality in an approachable, practical, and relevant manner. Whether you want to share Christ to a loved one who identifies as gay or you’re wrestling with questions of identity yourself, this book will help you better understand sexuality in light of God’s grand story and realize that holy sexuality is actually good news for all.

Gagnon, Via  Homosexuality and the Bible: Two Views  
In this brief book, two New Testament scholars discuss the relevant biblical texts on the subject of homosexual behavior and orientation. Discussing both Old Testament and New Testament texts, each author also raises important interpretive and moral questions and then offers a response to the other’s main assertions.

Allberry, Sam  Is God anti-gay? Questions Christians Ask
Sam is a British pastor/theologian who has struggled with same-sex attraction. This book is a quick and readable 85 page survey of scripture. This provides the kind of foundational knowledge that will be helpful.

Francis Chan speaks on homosexuality

Ravi Zacharias speaks on SSA issues in the church

The Gospel Coalition: How can the Gospel be good news?

Sam Allberry speaks about Jesus, Sexuality & The Good News

Yancy, Phillip What’s So Amazing About Grace?
Yancey sets grace in the midst of life’s stark images, tests its mettle against horrific “ungrace.” Can grace survive in the midst of such atrocities as the Nazi holocaust? Can it triumph over the brutality of the Ku Klux Klan? Should any grace at all be shown to the likes of Jeffrey Dahmer, who killed and cannibalized seventeen young men? Grace does not excuse sin, says Yancey, but it treasures the sinner. True grace is shocking, scandalous. It shakes our conventions with its insistence on getting close to sinners and touching them with mercy and hope. It forgives the unfaithful spouse, the racist, the child abuser. It loves today’s AIDS-ridden addict as much as the tax collector of Jesus’ day. In his most personal and provocative book ever, Yancey offers compelling, true portraits of grace’s life-changing power. He searches for its presence in his own life and in the church. He asks, How can Christians contend graciously with moral issues that threaten all they hold dear?

Complementary Ministries

Center for Faith, Sexuality and Gender  (Preston Sprinkle)
Follow the journey of real people who have wrestled with their faith, sexuality or gender.

Christopher Yuan  and his parents have spoken at Grace Church and Cuyahoga Valley Church in recent years.  His website contains excerpts from excellent conferences and speaking engagements.  “I do not look to my sexuality for my identity.  I am a child of God. God does not call us to be heterosexual or homosexual; He calls us to be holy.”

Hope for Wholeness
The goal of the Hope for Wholeness website is to shed light on the complicated issues of sexual and relational brokenness with special expertise on homosexuality and transgenderism.

Lead Them Home Ministries  Loving LGBTQ Young People in the Church: This is the website of an excellent organization offering information and support including a series of podcasts.

The Marin Foundation This organization works to build bridges between the LGBT+ community and conservatives, through scientific research, biblical and social education, and diverse community gatherings.

Walls Down  – This website helps equip the Church to be competent caregivers and disciple-makers in the LGBT and SSA community.

Harvest USA

Hole in My Heart Ministries  – This ministry offers resources for people wrestling with issues of sexuality. Laurie Krieg and her husband Krieg write about how each of them have needed to submit their broken sexuality to the lordship of Jesus Christ in marriage, and how they have come alive as a result.

Journey of Hope: Care Community for LGBT+

Meets 2nd Tuesday of each month at 7 PM in Room 9

Leader: Sharmir Oglesby  imteachingu@yahoo.com; 216.240.2534
Leader: Pam Labatto  pmlbbt@gmail.com ; 318.557.0329
Pastor: Dennis Barta  dennis.barta@gracecma.org; 440.243.4885×117

Read our Principles of Support

Our goal as a group:

What is God’s desire for each of us as we move forward together in step with Jesus?
“It is the Holy Spirit’s job to convict, God’s job to judge, our job to love.” – Billy Graham

Looking back – We as individuals and as a Church, have a history of getting our roles wrong. We have assumed roles that are not ours. Christ said “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another” (John 13:34-35). We are painfully aware that we have fallen short in this, particularly toward LGBT+ people, and have often been more hateful, bigoted, homophobic than loving, open-hearted and welcoming. We regret as a church and as individuals the rift between us and seek forgiveness and reconciliation.

Looking forward – We are committed to extend love and care to all people. Our desire for LGBT+ people is the same as for ourselves and all people: Our purpose is to exalt Jesus Christ by making disciples who… Love Jesus, Grow with others and Serve the World. Our desire for each of us is to encounter Christ where we are and to walk more and more in step with him in all areas of our lives. We aim to work together to grow in faith, mutual trust and community as we each commit to:

Listen – with open hearts to understand the other person’s experience. By listening attentively to each other’s concerns we hope to establish the respect and trust necessary to open the door for each of us to share more deeply our experiences, hurts, hopes & desires. “Be quick to listen, slow to speak” (James 1:19).

Empathize – identifying with another person’s joys and pains even when our experiences are quite different. Growing in our ability to validate the experiences and convictions of others, even when they differ from our own.

Agree – find common ground. We will never agree on everything – whether personal, theological, political or social — but we are confident that we will continue to find more common ground than we ever imagined.

Partner – together, move forward in our journeys toward and with Christ as we commit ourselves to give loving support to each other, especially when it is really hard.

Share – the purpose, peace, hope and love that God reveals to us, with all who care to hear.

Our principles represent what we are striving for: our touchstones and aspirations as we journey to come to a full Biblical understanding and response to the range of sexual diversities present in our culture. This is our belief system regarding universal, necessary truths of scripture that guide and strengthen our feelings, thoughts, and behaviors when life brings us this particular challenge.

1. We will see all individuals, including ourselves, as God’s very much loved, unique creation, yet broken/distorted by the presence of sin in each of us, and in our world, and are very thankful for Christ’s work of redemption offered to all. 1 John 4:10

2. We don’t have all the answers, we don’t even know all the questions. But we know Christ does and desires to show us the way.
1 Peter 1:15-16, Proverbs 3:5-6

3. We aim to grow in our ability to love and treat each other as Jesus loves and treats us: in a perfect blend of both Grace and Truth.
John 1:14,17; Phil 1:9-11

4. We find strength and understanding in sharing our journeys and listening to the journeys of others. Gal 6:2

5. We reject stigma in ourselves and others and acknowledge that ridding ourselves of prejudice is a process, not an event. We affirm the value and dignity of every person, thankful that Jesus unites us as “one people”. James 4:12, Eph 2:14

6. We won’t consider anyone’s pain to be less than our own. Phil 2:30

7. As God forgives us, we forgive ourselves and others, and reject guilt. Matt 6:12-15

8. We are not here to debate. We acknowledge our differences and share in a non-confrontational manner.
2 Tim 2:23, James 1:19, Eph 4:1-3

9. We accept we cannot resolve all problems and disagreements, or change other people, and so place them in God’s hands.
1 Sam 16:7, Romans 8:26

10. We expect a better future in a realistic way. Romans 8:28, Eph 3:14-21, Phil 4:6-7

11. God never gives up on us, so we will never give up hope for ourselves and others. Romans 15:13; 8:31-39, Eph 3:14-21

12. The personal information we hear at our meetings, stay at our meetings. We share in confidence that what we say will go no further. Proverbs 11:13

Testimonials from Journey of Hope Members

“Bridge of Grace and Truth has been a blessing to me. I feel I can come as I am and
receive love and acceptance. I have found resources and support to help me on my
journey with Jesus.” MS, Attender of Journey of Hope Group

“I was homosexual. I was in much darkness and much sin in so many ways. In Jesus Christ I became free indeed. I am continually being transformed to His likeness every day. I am forgiven. I came to Bridge of Grace and Truth about 3 years ago. I came to share story and offer hope. I came to talk of God’s grace, mercy and love for me. Jesus is now my love story.” DK, Attender of Journey of Hope Group

“I was gay all my life and even though I had a strong Christian upbringing I constantly justified my lifestyle. Less than a year ago God chased me down. In an instant I, to this day, cannot explain the Love that filled me and changed my life. But my family said to me; this is the result of your moms many years of praying for you. I have since then been attending Journey to Hope to share with others on this new journey. The encouragement and love this group has given me has been a weekly hug from God. These friends can relate to my past and help me grow; it is such a gift.” PL, Attender of Journey of Hope Group

Understanding Yourself and Who you Are In Christ

Sprinkle, Preston Living in a Gray World: A Christian Teen’s Guide to Understanding Homosexuality
As a Christian teen, there may seem to be few easy answers to the issues you regularly encounter. Can you be friends with someone who is gay? What if your sister is a lesbian, or you sometimes wonder if you might be as well? Does the Bible really say homosexuality is wrong? What does God want us to do and say? This book offers insight into these questions and more.

Personal Stories

Yuan, Christopher & Angela  Out of a Far Country: A Gay Son’s Journey to God. A Broken Mother’s Search for Hope
Years of heartbreak, confusion, and prayer followed before the Yuans found a place of complete surrender, which is God’s desire for all families. Their amazing story, told from the perspectives of both mother and son, offers hope for anyone affected by homosexuality.

In Gay Girl, Good God, author Jackie Hill Perry shares her own story, offering practical tools that helped her in the process of finding wholeness. Jackie grew up fatherless and experienced gender confusion. She embraced masculinity and homosexuality with every fiber of her being. She knew that Christians had a lot to say about all of the above. But was she supposed to change herself? How was she supposed to stop loving women, when homosexuality felt more natural to her than heterosexuality ever could?

Butterfield, Rosaria C. The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert: An English Professor’s Journey into Christian Faith
Rosaria, by the standards of many, was living a very good life. She had a tenured position at a large university in a field for which she cared deeply. She owned two homes with her partner, in which they provided hospitality to students and activists that were looking to make a difference in the world. In the community, Rosaria was involved in volunteer work. At the university, she was a respected advisor of students and her department’s curriculum.

Then, in her late 30’s, Rosaria encountered something that turned her world upside down–the idea that Christianity, a religion she had regarded as problematic and sometimes downright damaging, might be right about who God was. That idea seemed to fly in the face of the people and causes that she most loved. What follows is a story of what she describes as a train wreck at the hand of the supernatural. These are her secret thoughts about those events, written as only a reflective English professor could.

Coles, Gregory  Single, Gay, Christian: A Personal Journey of Faith and Sexual Identity
Let’s make a deal, you and me. Let’s make promises to each other. I promise to tell you my story. The whole story. I’ll tell you about a boy in love with Jesus who, at the fateful onset of puberty, realized his sexual attractions were persistently and exclusively for other guys. I’ll tell you how I lay on my bed in the middle of the night and whispered to myself the words I’ve whispered a thousand times since: “I’m gay.” I’ll show you the world through my eyes. I’ll tell you what it’s like to belong nowhere. To know that much of my Christian family will forever consider me unnatural, dangerous, because of something that feels as involuntary as my eye color. And to know that much of the LGBTQ community that shares my experience as a sexual minority will disagree with the way I’ve chosen to interpret the call of Jesus, believing I’ve bought into a tragic, archaic ritual of self-hatred. But I promise my story won’t all be sadness and loneliness and struggle. I’ll tell you good things too, hopeful things, funny things, like the time I accidentally came out to my best friend during his bachelor party. I’ll tell you what it felt like the first time someone looked me in the eyes and said, “You are not a mistake.” I’ll tell you that joy and sorrow are not opposites, that my life has never been more beautiful than when it was most brokenhearted. If you’ll listen, I promise I’ll tell you everything, and you can decide for yourself what you want to believe about me.

Heyer, Walt  A Transgender’s Faith  
A Transgender’s Faith courageously challenges political correctness and the gender change activists who say “Transgenders are born that way” by daring to share the powerful testimony of one man’s faith and restoration to his birth gender.

Jernigan, Dennis Sing Over Me Since 1988 I’ve been publicly sharing the story of how I walked out of a perceived homosexual identity. Why? Because I remember being a boy wondering if freedom was possible. The church didn’t have answers. The world didn’t have answers. The gay community just tried to make me give up and accept this as my innate identity. Yet, something deep inside of me kept knocking at the door of my heart saying, ‘There must be more. This cannot be your ultimate destiny and identity.’ When God met me with the Truth of the transforming power of Jesus Christ, and I began what I call my incredible journey, I began to realize that I’d been lied to by the world and the philosophies of man. After seven years of freedom under my belt, the Lord asked me to begin publicly sharing my story because there were others out there who felt the same as I felt – that there must be more.

Through My Eyes   – Christian young people who’ve experienced same-sex attraction speak about coming to Christ, their growing awareness of SSA, and their experience in the church.

Dennis Jernigan’s Testimony – I grew up in the church…imagine my horror when, at the age of 10 and already knowing my struggle, I overheard the men of the church discussing homosexuality…

Love Letter to a Lesbian by Jackie Hill-Perry  I too was a lesbian. I had same-sex attractions as early as five years old. As I grew up, those feelings never subsided. They only grew. I would find myself having crushes on my female best friends, but I was far too ashamed to admit it to them — let alone to myself.

Moore, Matt  I Begged God to Make Me Straight and He Never Answered 
So I prayed. Oh. How. I. Prayed. “God, make me normal.” “God, make me straight.” “God, make me like everyone else.”
But God didn’t answer those prayers. Why?

Faithful Journey: Receive encouragement, insight and guidance as one who loves a person who is LGBT+.

Support Community for Family & Friends meets 2nd Tuesday each month at 7 PM in Room 10

Leader: Marie Ferrell  farrellmarie0@gmail.com 440-748-1617
Pastor: Dennis Barta dennis.barta@gracecma.org 440.243.4885×117

Read Our Principles Of Support

Our goal as a group:

What is God’s desire for each of us as we move forward together in step with Jesus?
“It is the Holy Spirit’s job to convict, God’s job to judge, our job to love.” – Billy Graham

Looking back – We as individuals and as a Church, have a history of getting our roles wrong. We have assumed roles that are not ours. Christ said “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another” (John 13:34-35). We are painfully aware that we have fallen short in this, particularly toward LGBT+ people, and have often been more hateful, bigoted, homophobic than loving, open-hearted and welcoming. We regret as a church and as individuals the rift between us and seek forgiveness and reconciliation.

Looking forward – We are committed to extend love and care to all people. Our desire for LGBT+ people is the same as for ourselves and all people: Our purpose is to exalt Jesus Christ by making disciples who… Love Jesus, Grow with others and Serve the World. Our desire for each of us is to encounter Christ where we are and to walk more and more in step with him in all areas of our lives. We aim to work together to grow in faith, mutual trust and community as we each commit to:

Listen – with open hearts to understand the other person’s experience. By listening attentively to each other’s concerns we hope to establish the respect and trust necessary to open the door for each of us to share more deeply our experiences, hurts, hopes & desires. “Be quick to listen, slow to speak” (James 1:19).

Empathize – identifying with another person’s joys and pains even when our experiences are quite different. Growing in our ability to validate the experiences and convictions of others, even when they differ from our own.

Agree – find common ground. We will never agree on everything – whether personal, theological, political or social — but we are confident that we will continue to find more common ground than we ever imagined.

Partner – together, move forward in our journeys toward and with Christ as we commit ourselves to give loving support to each other, especially when it is really hard.

Share – the purpose, peace, hope and love that God reveals to us, with all who care to hear.

Our principles represent what we are striving for: our touchstones and aspirations as we journey to come to a full Biblical understanding and response to the range of sexual diversities present in our culture. This is our belief system regarding universal, necessary truths of scripture that guide and strengthen our feelings, thoughts, and behaviors when life brings us this particular challenge.

1. We will see all individuals, including ourselves, as God’s very much loved, unique creation, yet broken/distorted by the presence of sin in each of us, and in our world, and are very thankful for Christ’s work of redemption offered to all. 1 John 4:10

2. We don’t have all the answers, we don’t even know all the questions. But we know Christ does and desires to show us the way.
1 Peter 1:15-16, Proverbs 3:5-6

3. We aim to grow in our ability to love and treat each other as Jesus loves and treats us: in a perfect blend of both Grace and Truth.
John 1:14,17; Phil 1:9-11

4. We find strength and understanding in sharing our journeys and listening to the journeys of others. Gal 6:2

5. We reject stigma in ourselves and others and acknowledge that ridding ourselves of prejudice is a process, not an event. We affirm the value and dignity of every person, thankful that Jesus unites us as “one people”. James 4:12, Eph 2:14

6. We won’t consider anyone’s pain to be less than our own. Phil 2:30

7. As God forgives us, we forgive ourselves and others, and reject guilt. Matt 6:12-15

8. We are not here to debate. We acknowledge our differences and share in a non-confrontational manner.
2 Tim 2:23, James 1:19, Eph 4:1-3

9. We accept we cannot resolve all problems and disagreements, or change other people, and so place them in God’s hands.
1 Sam 16:7, Romans 8:26

10. We expect a better future in a realistic way. Romans 8:28, Eph 3:14-21, Phil 4:6-7

11. God never gives up on us, so we will never give up hope for ourselves and others. Romans 15:13; 8:31-39, Eph 3:14-21

12. The personal information we hear at our meetings, stay at our meetings. We share in confidence that what we say will go no further. Proverbs 11:13

Testimonials from Faithful Journey Community members

“We were looking for understanding and support from others who have similar experiences and desires that we have. We found that lifeline at Bridge of Grace and Truth. We are deeply thankful to God for a group that follows the Bible and supports so
well.” D&KM, Attenders of Faithful Journey Group

“The group has been invaluable because we have begun to better understand how we are to love well those who are following a path for which we have little understanding. Sharing our grief with others, listening and finding some understanding of the struggle, helps us to love as Jesus loved.” DR, Attender of Faithful Journey Group

“The group has taken our difficult family situation and has provided us a venue to share and discuss personal situations within a Christian environment. They have also provided resources that have helped guide us through the journey. They display love to all who attend.” K&KS, Attender of Faithful Journey Group

“It has always been good to be with others who share my story, but sharing with my dear friend, BB, was the highlight for me! Just to see the transformation of her life has given me hope for my daughter! Thanks for staying faithful!” JH, Attender of Faithful Journey Group

“Learning to love well. 1 Corinthians 13:4-7. I especially like v.7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always persevere.” KS, Attender of Faithful Journey Group

Understanding Your Loved One and What They Need From You

Lead Them Home Ministries, Guiding Families of LGBT+ Loved Ones
“Guiding Families is, quite simply, the best resource I’ve ever read when it comes to navigating the often complex relationship between Christians and their LGBT+ loved one. This resource is short and accessible, and yet comes with years of experience from one of Christianity’s leading voices in the LGBT+ conversation. Whether you have an LGBT+ child, sibling, friend, neighbor, or co-worker, Guiding Families will help you love well without sacrificing your convictions.” – Preston Sprinkle, president of The Center for Faith, Sexuality & Gender

 

Geiger, Tim  What to Do When Your Child Says, “I’m Gay”
If your child said this, you are probably experiencing a combination of shock, denial, anger, confusion, and uncertainty. Despite your shock, you still want to respond well. What should you say? What questions should you ask? How do you move forward in your relationship? Geiger walks with readers through the ups and downs of dealing with your child’s revelation. With the wisdom and compassion of Scripture, he offers helpful advice for navigating the new complexities in our relationship with your child and hope for moving forward together.

Space at the Table  – In this video, Evangelical theologian Brad, and his gay son Drew tell their story.

Kaltenbach, Caleb Messy Grace: How a Pastor with Gay Parents Learned to Love Others Without Sacrificing Conviction
Caleb Kaltenbach was raised by LGBT parents, marched in gay pride parades as a youngster, and experienced firsthand the hatred and bitterness of some Christians toward his family. But then Caleb surprised everyone, including himself, by becoming a Christian…and a pastor.

Mobley, Ann If I Tell You I’m Gay, Will You Still Love Me?: One Mother’s Journey to Truth and Grace 
The shocking revelation that her son was gay threw Ann Mobley into a lonely, emotional tailspin and triggered a decision to hide the appalling discovery from family and friends. But as troubling questions continued to swirl in her mind, she launched a desperate search for personal and biblical answers. How did God see her son? Was homosexuality the worst of sins? How could her son be gay? And would his homosexual lifestyle tear them apart?

Roberts, Vaughan Talking Points: Transgender Author and speaker, Vaughan Roberts surveys the Christian worldview and seeks to apply these principles to the many complex questions surrounding gender identity in Transgender, a volume from the Talking Points series. This short book gives an overview and a starting point for constructive discussion as we seek to live in a world with different values, and love, serve and relate to transgender people.

Advice from Dr. Leon and Angela Yuan 

Christopher Yuan’s parents found they needed a paradigm shift in four areas:

• We are not the cause of our children’s faults.  Adam and Eve had the perfect father, and yet they still messed up!  God does not call us to raise Godly children, He calls us to be Godly parents.

• We are not the cure for our children’s problems. The father of the prodigal son did not pursue him in an attempt to fix him.  He waited expectantly for him to return when he was ready.

• Our children are not our own. They are God’s children who He entrusts to us.  Let Him handle them as they grow up and leave our home.  Our kids can become our idol.  Look first to God and be ready to lead them there also when they are ready.

• Love is: not enabling. We must each learn to face the consequences of our own choices and actions.  When we interfere with that process, we get in God’s way.  They spoke of Christopher and the hard road he traveled to the Lord.  They also spoke of his brother who has made “better choices” and looks like the “perfect son”, but has not found his real need for God.

What is Gender Dysphoria?  – In this video, Dr. Mark Yarhouse presents recent research on the topic of gender dysphoria for a helpful framework in the conversation of identity.

Advice from Dr. Leon and Angela Yuan

Christopher Yuan’s parents found they needed a paradigm shift in four areas:

• We are not the cause of our children’s faults.  Adam and Eve had the perfect father, and yet they still messed up!  God does not call us to raise Godly children, He calls us to be Godly parents.

• We are not the cure for our children’s problems. The father of the prodigal son did not pursue him in an attempt to fix him.  He waited expectantly for him to return when he was ready.

• Our children are not our own. They are God’s children who He entrusts to us.  Let Him handle them as they grow up and leave our home.  Our kids can become our idol.  Look first to God and be ready to lead them there also when they are ready.

• Love is: not enabling. We must each learn to face the consequences of our own choices and actions.  When we interfere with that process, we get in God’s way.  They spoke of Christopher and the hard road he traveled to the Lord.  They also spoke of his brother who has made “better choices” and looks like the “perfect son”, but has not found his real need for God.

When You Pray For Your Loved Ones

1. FOCUS ON GOD
Rather than focusing on any problems, consider Peter as he walked on the water. Matthew 14:22-23.
Worship God for who He is and thank Him for the perfect plan He has for this person.

2. ASK GOD TO ALLOW YOU TO SEE THIS PERSON THROUGH HIS LOVING EYES.
Consider the parables of the lost coin, the lost sheep, the lost son (Luke 15:1-24).
God does not look at the outside of a person, but at his heart (1 Samuel 16:7).

3. THANK GOD FOR ALL OF THIS PERSON’S POTENTIALS
Their abilities, skills, gifts and endearing qualitites – Everyone has some!

“For you formed my inward parts; you covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, and that my soul knows very well.  My frame was not hidden from You, when I was made in secret, And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. And in Your book they all were written, the days fashioned for me, When as yet there were none of them.” – Psalm 139:13-16

4. ASK GOD TO GIVE YOU A SPECIFIC PROMISE
A Scripture verse to claim in prayer for this person.

“If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.”
– John 1:5-7

5. ASK GOD TO BLOCK SATAN’S PLANS.  

“Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to ME, strengthen your brethren.”
– Luke 22:31-32

6. ASK GOD TO MAKE THIS PERSON OPEN AND RECEPTIVE TO GOD’S VOICE.  

“For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit have their minds set on the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.” – Romans 8:5-6

“Behold, I have been standing at the door and continually knocking….” – Revelation 3:20

7. ASK GOD TO USE ANY MEANS NECESSARY
to dissolve this person’s resistance to following the Holy Spirit’s guidance.

“Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought,
but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.” – Romans 8:26

“The father prunes the branches so that they might produce good fruit.” –  John 15:1-4

8. ASK GOD TO BLESS THIS PERSON
in a specific way so that there will be no doubt in this person’s mind that the blessing is from God.

“But, as it is written, ‘What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him.'”
– 1 Corinthians 2:9

9. ASK GOD TO MAKE YOU WILLING TO DO WHATEVER HE ASKS
you to do in the life of this person, even when it means doing nothing.

“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will guide you with my eye.” – Psalm 32:8

Personal Stories

Loved by Community: Steve & Marilyn’s Story
Not long after arriving at her apartment, one of her friends stopped by. We were friendly and talked freely with her, but during the conversation, listening and watching their reactions to each other, both my wife and I came away with a very disturbing feeling. After discussing our reactions on the drive home, we decided to call and ask some questions. Our daughter confirmed our suspicion: she was in a lesbian relationship.

When My Daughter Said ‘I’m Gay’: Confessions of an Evangelical Pastor
The note said, “I am gay. I am happy this way. And if you really love me, you won’t try to change me, and you will not try to talk with me about this.”  

Disclaimer: There are a growing number of books, websites and resources on the subject of sexuality claiming to be from a Christian perspective. Some align more closely with Grace Church’s Bible-based doctrine, beliefs and practices than others. We have also found that some resources are more helpful than others. As a result we have carefully selected the resources included in these pages. Inclusion in these pages, however, does not mean that we endorse or agree with everything in each resource.