Friday, April 18, 2008

It's Been One Year Blogging (Or: Post One)

Like with the very first post on this blog, this was not what I'd initially had in mind to write about. What I'd considered was a follow up to that first post. I thought I'd remind people that there are still some very sad and serious problems going on in our country and in the world today. But, I thought I'd save that for another time. Yes, there are many things wrong in the world today, but there are many wonderful and joyous things as well. This blog has been one of those things for me. So, I decided to describe how this blog came about and to also share with all of you what was originally intended to be the very first post on this blog.

Here's how it came about. Last year I met a guy online named Jason Huck. Some of you may know of him. He usually comments on certain other blogs. The two of us began writing back and forth to each other through email, essentially debating the policies of Exodus International, and giving our own viewpoints on matters concerning homosexuality. To tell you the truth, I think I may have honestly annoyed the heck out of him. I was just so desperate for answers and I really did want to hear what he had to say. I liked writing to him because he challenged me. He made me think about where I stand on certain issues. And if he happens to read this, I want him to know that he did help to change my mind concerning hate crimes legislation for homosexuals. I'm on board with that now. Reason being, if it's okay to have such legislation for Christians, it has to be okay to have it for homosexuals as well—as for any group that can be discriminated against or abused out of hate or prejudice. But it was Jason who pointed out to me Jay's blog “Adventures Of A Christian Collegian”. I had never known such blogs as his were even in existence until that time, and after reading several posts by Jay, and reviewing some of the blogs linked from his, I quickly became hooked. I wanted to join in on this little online blogging community. I wanted to share my thoughts and to read what others had to say. I wanted to be able to express openly what things I struggle with and to have others to talk to about those things. So, I started this blog.

The following was meant to be the first post on this blog. A school shooting at Virginia Tech made me reconsider publishing it at the time though, and so it got put on the shelf until now. Feeling saddened by those tragic events, I decided to instead evaluate how far our country and culture seem to have declined morally in recent years. I summarized an email I'd read, which to my mind proved some very concrete reasons for why our nation seems to be slipping so far away from God. I was looking for something that could explain why anyone would go into a school and begin shooting and killing innocent people like that. As I already mentioned, my initial intent for this post was to do a follow up of that first one. But I came to the conclusion that that first post still stands on its own. There's very little a follow up could add that isn't already made clear.

So, without further ado, here is the originally intended first entry for this blog.


Hi everyone. I suppose I should start things off by explaining the name of my blog. The last couple of years I have been on what I'd like to call a whirlwind journey. I've been on a journey of self-discovery, which began in May of 2005, when my brother told me, “I found what you have in your closet.” To which, I knew he'd found out my deepest, darkest secret. It was the secret I had hid from everyone in my life, that I had spent so much time covering up, lying and pretending, in order to keep. He knew I was gay.

I felt crushed, panicked, afraid, ashamed, humiliated, and angry all at the same time. How could my brother have invaded my privacy like that? How could he have gone behind my back like that? How could he presume to bring up something he had no right to bring up? What right did he have!? Who was he to “out” me like that?

Up until then, no one on this entire planet knew that I struggled with my sexuality. I had never come out to anyone. I had never hinted to anyone. I'd simply kept this struggle to myself. I'd bottled up years worth of feelings and emotions, and I'd thrown away the key to my heart. Very few people have ever truly gotten to know me. There are so many whom I've pushed away or distanced myself from throughout the years, just out of fear that they may suspect me of being gay. I'd learned never to open up to people.

After my brother found out I was gay (which I suppose I should explain the whole closet thing—no pun intended by that. I had a few recorded episodes of the show “Queer As Folk” locked in a two-drawer filing cabinet in my closet. My brother found the key to the lock, and the rest explains itself) I felt devastated. I'd already felt a lot of guilt about what limited homosexual activity I'd engaged in, and had already by that time, decided not to go looking for another relationship. Although I wasn't one-hundred percent opposed to the idea of some good-looking guy finding me and sweeping me off my feet. However, being a Christian, I knew that God's intent for me was not a life of homosexuality. I knew that the pornography I'd been looking at, the one homosexual relationship I had experienced, and all of it, wasn't right. I felt that in my heart as much as in my mind. As right as it seemed to be for me, it never felt right. I hope that makes sense. But I had never had the direction, the will power, or the understanding or support to be able to do anything about any of it. I had never heard anyone say, “You can change. You don't have to be that way. You don't have to give in to those things. You don't have to be gay if you don't want to be”.

Now I know some of you may take offense to the notion that “change is possible”, but I'm here to describe how my life has changed, not my sexuality (although we can discuss that later). In the last couple of years, I have been on this journey to change my life. And during that time, I've literally felt myself caught up in this sort of whirlwind journey of self-discovery. I am still on that great journey even today.

The purpose of this blog is to discuss my thoughts on all that I've learned the past couple of years, and am continuing to learn. But it is also to bring to light my struggles, feelings toward Christianity, and really, just to give people a place where they can talk about their own feelings. I want to welcome anyone who wants to post their comments on this blog to do so. If I've learned anything the last couple of years, it's that we need each other's help and encouragement. Let's support each other. I know I'm not the only celibate gay Christian out there. Feel free to drop me a line, and any prayer support is appreciated. Likewise, I'm willing to pray for any of you.

I am new to the whole blogger's world, so please forgive me if I ever break etiquette.


Well, there you have it. That was what was originally intended to be my first post. I suppose posting it now is better late than never—it's a year overdue.

It honestly is hard for me to believe that it's been a full year now since I started this blog. When I first started it, I honestly didn't expect it to last for more than a few months. And if not for a few things achieved through blogging, it would have only been that. But it has helped me so much just being able to write out my thoughts for this blog. I've learned to open up a bit more and not keep so much bottled up inside of me all the time. And for those who have been reading since the start, you've seen most of my ups and downs throughout the last year. It's helped me to read other peoples blogs. I've learned a lot from my fellow bloggers. I've become friends with some of you and I've prayed with you and shared my life with you. I've accepted your help and offered my help in return. I've gotten to know so many of you, and that's been the best part of all of this. I've made friends who have taught me just how much God loves and cares about me, and how others can love me, despite whatever hang-ups I may have. I thank God for all of you.

So, here's to hopefully another year of blogging, and a great many more to come. Who knows what adventures will lay ahead and what the Lord will have in store for us? Oh the places we'll go!

God bless.

6 comments:

Joe said...

Hi Brandon,

How has it been between you and your family since Christmas? Assuming they don't read this blog - does it feel like they understand your 'situation' one year on?

:: Praying that they will support you no matter what ::

Joe

Brandon said...

Joe,

Things have been good. I've not really asked my parents for any additional support or help, but the fact that they've not treated me any different is all the support I could ever ask of them. So, in that regard, they've been very supportive. And I know that if I did need their help or whatever they would be there for me.

As for my brother, things were a little rough with him when he first found out almost three years ago, but we've been good for a long time now. I think he understands my situation for the most part, but not completely. He seems to think that being a guy I HAVE to like girls. He seems to think that liking guys is just something extra. It's been trying for me to get him to realize that that's not the case and that I honestly don't feel much attraction for girls at all.

Thanks for the prayers. :)

Jay said...

It's been good having you around, Brandon. Praying for you.

~Jay

Glenn Houtchens said...

Grats on your first year and a wonderful first post. Thank you for sharing it wit us, Brandon. God bless,
Glenn

Brandon said...

Thanks guys. :)

Beast said...

Hi Brandon,

Congratulations! You make my journey meaningful, too!

Bless!

Beast