While reviewing my blog, I discovered this post from a couple of years back which I failed to publish. It obviously is dated and doesn’t match the calendar, but it’s still applicable.
It’s been an awesome day filled with love and joy. Surrounded by my loving wife, beautiful daughters, awesome son in law, and two granddaughters – one of which is only 1 week old – we have loved and laughed.
I have carried with me an asterisk. There in the back of my mind. There in the scar tissue part of my heart. The * ties itself to everything I am and attempt to do. The * that changes the way I’m viewed.
A faithful husband – with an * of past failures. A nagging memory that won’t go away. I know she feels it, too.
A good dad – except for that awful * that haunts my efforts to lead my family. I fear they feel it, too.
Well, * is what * is. This “holiday” has been a tad tarnished. For me anyway.
Tomorrow will be a new day with new mercies. I will trust that He will bring some new healing and strength.
Maybe in time the * will shrink in its influence and power over me.
Today, I sent a FB message to those who I was pastoring when I screwed up. I admitted my sin and my failing. I admitted I failed them and God. I admitted that I really messed up the work God was doing through the efforts of our church plant. I admitted that I nearly lost my family in the process.
I asked for forgiveness.
It was therapeutic to my soul and mind. But more importantly, it was what God called me to do…sitting right there in church this morning.
Within just a few hours, I was overwhelmed by the outpouring of love and forgiveness in expressive and gritty-honest replies. It is an amazing spectical of grace, mercy, and love the likes of which I have rarely witnessed to this point in my life…second only to that of my wife.
I recieved forgiveness….again; because, to a person, they all stated that they had forgiven me at the very beginning.
I have felt God’s presence in my life in special ways the last few weeks. The loving presence of my wife, children, and a community of faith are some powerful avenues through which I am experiencing the love and presence of my Heavenly Father.
Does that mean that “it” has gone away and that I’m now “fixed?” No.
It simply means that I’m finally reaching a place to understand that God loves me just the way I am and that He can give me strength to live my life in such a way that He is glorified and His Church is strengthened. I’m understanding that through the loving actions of my family and friends. Although most don’t know that I had a gay affair or that I secretly identify as a gay Christian man in a mixed-orientation marriage, those of them that do have had loving reactions just as those who don’t.
So, yeah. Today I cleared the air with some dear friends.
She visited my place of employment to shop for something. When she came home, this is what she said. The shame she carries for my moral failure runs this deep. “What do they know about him?” “What do they say about me?”
I’ve created this. Yet, I’m powerless to cure this.