Sue is our firstborn. She was a fervent believer and Bible student as a child and teenager. We often discussed Scripture passages, theology and the Christian life. She joined the church before college, led college dorm Bible studies, and attended the student mission conferences.
Things changed midway through college. We don’t know what happened but we clearly remember the time and place where she told us she no longer believed in Jesus Christ. We were devastated. She explained that she could not accept that Jesus’ death and resurrection was the only means by which people could enter heaven. Though not an atheist, she said she was no longer a Christian in the sense in which we use the term. Scripture teaches that apart from accepting Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior, Sue will not enter the kingdom of heaven. And that broke our hearts.
We earnestly prayed for the Holy Spirit to bring her back to Jesus Christ. Our time frame was six months. But we did not see that happen.
Sue worked hard, and found a good position in a promising career. We rejoiced in her achievements and thanked the Lord for those blessings. But we longed to hear her pray, play a gospel song, or quote the Bible. We questioned our parenting, pressed God to answer our prayer, and longed to talk with her about her spiritual journey. We wavered between confidence that the Lord would save her and despair that she was hardening her heart.
Doubt and despair grew to bewilderment and anguish when, some years later, Sue told us that she was sexually attracted to females. She said that she was a lesbian and that she had found a new peace in finally acknowledging who she was. As parents, we were faced with the realization that our daughter was living a lifestyle that was leading her further away from the truth found in the Scriptures that she believed so passionately as a child.
We found ourselves in a place we never expected to be. We cried and prayed. We were exhausted during the day and wakeful at night. We asked what we had done wrong, but God spared us from blaming each other for our daughter’s choices and lifestyle. We watched our other children struggle, and wonder how well they really knew their sister. In the middle of it all, we thanked the Lord for her siblings’ steady faith in him. We grew in our knowledge of our daily dependence on Christ’s mercy and keeping.
Sue is thoughtful and kind. She is attentive to our needs. In many ways, Sue is a model daughter. We love her and she loves us. She listens when we share our life: the spiritual, emotional and physical aspects. On the other hand, we differ. She thinks we should agree that she was born with same-sex attraction and accept it as something as natural as one’s race. We know there is much we don’t understand about ourselves but we believe sexual union is God’s gift to a married husband and wife.
Even more deeply, we know that the foundational issue is Sue’s relationship to Jesus Christ. Only through Jesus Christ will she believe him, repent of sin, and receive the will and ability to live for his glory. She lives in a world where things that offend the Lord are considered normal, even more enlightened than Scripture. We know “straights” who also think their ways are better than the Lord’s, but the reality is that only Jesus can deliver our daughter. When she returns to Jesus, she will be at odds with many long-time friends and colleagues.
What we thought was a 6-18 month spiritual struggle has become a decade of intercession for our daughter’s salvation. We pray in faith and hope because of God’s promises and Christ Jesus’ redemption from sin, self and Satan.
We continue to stand in his grace, and only because of grace. We remember that we are his children because while we were hostile and rebellious sinners, God loved and died for us (Romans 5:8,10). It required as much of Jesus’ blood to save our souls as is required to redeem, call and bring our girl to glory.
Our hope endures because God is calling lost people to life in him. We have no evidence that Sue will be saved other than God’s love and faithfulness, but what else do we need? What else would be more reassuring? We have confidence that God will rescue her – maybe after our death. In that hope we live.
This testimony was submitted anonymously