Skip to main content

Is Being a Transsexual Scriptural?

A letter written to a Christian friend who questioned my transition and offered to pray for me to not go through with it. He was aware of another transsexual who had a change of heart and reverted back to male. My friend thought I was making the same mistake and offered to put him in touch with me so we could talk. I declined the offer.
August, 2008 
Hi Terry.
Thank you for your email.
My dad, who is a very devout Christian, came with my mom the day after I shared with them in April. He had been wrestling with what I had shared all night and was afraid that I was slapping God in the face and going against His divine plan. Or worse yet, that I had turned my back on Christ. Those questions were not new to me since I had in fact been wrestling with them all of my adult life, since I was 20 years old. That is when I came to faith in Jesus, in large part due to His invitation for all who are weary and heavy laden, and also His promise, that I would find rest. In the ensuing 38 years I developed a very fundamentalist view that was pretty black and white with regards to my "burden." along with my wife, we approach it on a purely spiritual level and saw it as a spiritual battle. 
Of course, there is a spiritual component to everything in our lives, but we are also physical and mental beings and consequently vulnerable to the corruption that is in the world. I answered my dad in the form of a question. I asked him what God's divine plan was for our niece who at the time was pregnant and had been told that her baby had a 90% chance of being born with serious complications and possible malformations in her body? And what about people with physical disabilities who required painful surgeries and or who were unable to move or take care of themselves? And why didn't God heal people universally? 
These questions were not meant to be a smokescreen or a justification for the decisions I have had to make, because if I could have it my way, these would be the last things I would have chosen for myself, nor would I wish them on my worst enemy. I have only recently been able to reconcile who I am inside with what I have believed all these years. I have come to a place where I no longer view my condition as 'bondage" but as my thorn in the flesh. I think there is a very big difference between the two. Yes, they both result from the Fall, but in the same way that Jesus did not heal everyone in His generation, then we must acknowledge like Paul did, that not everything that is broken is going to be fixed in this life. Christ is still first in my life.
I have read many testimonies of others with a similar burden to mine. Like the person you mentioned, I have read about those who have decided to revert to their original gender role and have thought about their reasons and how they might apply to my life. My expectations for embarking on this prescribed path for myself has been tempered by many, many stories like these. As I said, these are really my last options because I have exhausted everything else. I have not rushed into this without serious consideration for what this would mean spiritually,  socially, physically, financially and to my family. And I have also come to a place in my understanding of Scripture that there is a lot of ambiguity with respect to many aspects of the human condition.
I also see that when we attempt to establish a doctrine in some of these areas, that we run the risk of becoming like the Pharisees and erect walls of exclusion to separate us from anyone who may hold a different view. Is God not big enough to include and invite those who are marginalized and "different?" I believe He is. Otherwise, why would He have dispatched Philip to intercept the Ethiopian Eunuch as he return home from Jerusalem? The fact is that this person would not have been allowed to step on the Temple grounds because he was ceremonially unclean, yet he had a heart for God and had travelled hundreds of miles to come to Jerusalem. Though being a devoted Jew, he was still excluded until the Holy Spirit drew him in and then there was no distinction between the eunuch and any other believer.
I have come to realize that I misunderstood Jesus' invitation most of my life. I had expected Jesus to remove my burden and weariness and kept waiting for the day when I would be made normal. I became very adept at collecting verses like one might gather ammunition in order to shoot myself down and beat myself into submission. But I had no rest until It dawned on me that Jesus never promised to remove the burden, but instead to give me rest in spite of my burden and weariness. I am finally at rest with who I am in much the same way that a person who is paralyzed is at rest in their condition. 
One other thing that I realized was that God was answering my prayers in a way I never acknowledged. It wasn't until I had this mental picture of someone with bone cancer who is told that the only way to save their life is by amputating both legs above the knee and objects to the proposed treatment because they will look different, will have to learn new skills and will be in a wheel chair the rest of their lives. Perhaps God's provision and answer to this person's prayer was that he had the right medical care and access to those who would help rehabilitate him so he could live, rather than die from cancer. In my pride, I was that person. I recoiled at the proposed treatment because it would mean a set of life changing steps I would have to take. Why couldn't God mend something so private and personal quietly and secretly. Why such a public remedy? 
The fact is that much more is understood about gender dysphoria today than ever before and we live in a city, province and country that is open minded towards the condition. God has allowed me to live in a time and place where there is hope for me, to finally be released from the sadness and depression that have been my curse ever since I can remember. 
As a believer in Jesus, I look for the day when we will be set free once and for all. I look forward to a new spiritual body that will be neither male nor female. More importantly, I look forward to seeing Him face to face and falling at His feet in humble adoration.
I hope this might answer and address some of the concerns you expressed. I have had the privilege of sharing with many fellow believers who have never considered this issue before, at least not until I disclosed to them. I am grateful that I have many who have pledged to journey on with me, with my loving wife and our three sons, and to love us and pray for us. 
Faith, hope and love.

Popular posts from this blog

Behind the scenes of "Ask a transgender Christian"

A young woman I greatly admire is Rachel Held Evans. She is an amazing author, blogger, speaker, wife, mother and a seriously articulate Evangelical Christian who is not afraid to enter into conversations that would make many others run and hide in their little dogma houses.

Earlier in September of 2012, Rachel contacted me to see if I would be willing to be interviewed as part of her popular blog series titled "AKS A…" Would I be willing to be the target for "Ask a Transgender Christian?"My new friend Justin Lee, executive director of the Gay Christian Network (GCN) and author of the soon to be released book"Torn: Rescuing the Gospel from the Gays-vs.-Christians Debate" suggested me as the person to ask. (In the same way, Justin is the person Rachel chose for the "Ask a Gay Christian" interview.

Having followed Rachel for several months, my initial reaction to her email was one of disbelief and trepidation, given the level of intellectual and t…

Cats and dogs seem to matter more to the ruling BC Liberals than trans persons.

The Apparent Hypocrisy of British Columbia’s Elected Liberal Government
The same week that Transgender advocates and allies stood in front of the BC Legislature in support of the introduction of a private member’s bill aimed at protecting the rights of transgender people, the BC Liberal Government announced an order-in-council that adopts the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association’s Codes of Practice for both kennel and cat breeding.

Indeed, this is very good news for dogs and cats in British Columbia.
Yet, this same Government has sat intentionally on it’s laurels, refusing to pass an exact version of the “trans rights bill” on three previous occasions. This is the fourth time the Honourable Spencer Chandra Herbert, MLA for Vancouver-West End, introduces this bill. The bill would amend the BC Human Rights Code (BCHRC) to include “gender identity and gender expression.”
Having “gender identity and gender expression” included in the BCHRC will afford increased protection, safety, and …

Witnessing a Birth of Sorts

When the moment to start life anew comes, it usually happens in the quietness of one's spirit. Yesterday, February 21, 2012 will mark the moment my friend Tori took that step in the most unassuming way.

In 1999, about the time I was being assessed and diagnosed at the Vancouver Hospital's Gender Clinic, I made a couple of calls to a support group in the area. Their brochure listed a phone number and stated calls could be made on Thursday nights if you needed to speak to someone, otherwise you could leave a message and someone would get back to you. The woman who answered was friendly and explained the purpose of the group an how one would go about attending their meetings and other events. Membership was reserved for those who had been vetted and approved by the membership committee. Confidentiality and security of personal information was very high on the group's priority list.

Given the group's stated purposed was to provide a safe place for heterosexual men to cross…