A continuation of and conclusion to my post of 3/25/2016:
Now this might sound all well and good. Yet some might ask, “What about theological issues? What does God have to say about this? What does the Bible say?”
The detailed answer is another book, not a letter. But I am not dodging the question. I deal with these sorts of questions on this blog (started in November 2013). I would always welcome a discussion on these topics, whether one on one or with a group, Bibles open. Based on growing evidence that I and many others like me were born this way (this is not a choice), combined with the many verses that show how God identifies people and how we were formed before we were born, I feel more strongly about this now than I did in November 2012. I still uncover other verses from time to time that support this viewpoint. Since you found this letter on my blog, you will find other blog posts where I expound on this topic. Look for the page “Key Bible Verses”, or blog posts under the category “The Bible on Transsexualism”.
I said that I would get back to Pastor, and this is the appropriate point in the letter. I will not mislead you by letting you think that he endorses my opinion in these matters. We have not discussed this topic recently, so he should be the one to weigh in on where he stands at this time. But one of his best qualities (and why you are so blessed to have him as your pastor) is his transparency. My understanding is that his willingness to continue to fellowship with me is based on the following: that Christians are called to love one another; that he considers the totality of what he knows about me and my Christian walk, not just one item, albeit a significant one; his awareness that just as I am not perfect, he is not perfect; his awareness that while he believes his position to be right, that he is not inerrant. And if I have misspoken on any of these or omitted anything, I trust that Pastor will make the necessary corrections.
When I met with Pastor and his wife in January 2012 to inform them of this development in my life and to ask for counseling (which eventually was handled solely by Pastor), he admitted that he did not have a theological knowledge of the topic. He did what he needed to do to get up to speed and I talked to someone he recommended that I talk to. Most importantly, our prayer of agreement was that God’s will for my life be revealed.
With the guidance of the Holy Spirit and affirmation from many (but not all) people: strangers, family members, friends, clients and best of all, solid, conservative Christians, I believe that His will for my life is being revealed. And I believe that I am living that will as best I can, especially in this matter.
New people in my life who I have not told accept me as female and most of the people who I have told accept me as female. Some people who have known me for a long time tell me that “if they didn’t know, they wouldn’t know”. People who have met me recently tell me that they find it hard to believe that I was ever anything except female. Even a number of people who met me for the first time during my last year at CBC are now telling me that they have only thought of me as female. And I was wearing male clothes when I met them.
There are two minor areas of disagreement that I had with Pastor. I am sharing them with you to show how my understanding continues to progress.
One was when I made a statement that there was no verse or combination of verses in the Bible to back a certain point of view (I am pretty sure it was on whether we are born with gender identity and genitalia that always match). Pastor’s reply was to the effect that there are some things that are so universally accepted that they do not need to be included. I let his point stand at the time. Later on, I realized that such a belief does not agree with the evangelical Christian position that the Bible is the inspired, inerrant and infallible word of God. If anyone should go to the Bible with any question, and if an answer cannot be found whether by direct statement, induction or deduction from the entire word of God, then the Bible has failed on that point. But it cannot fail and be infallible at the same time.
The other was when we exchanging positions and points of view based on scripture. I would say something from the Bible. Then Pastor would answer it from the Bible. Then I would answer it with something else from the Bible. It was a lively, respectful and friendly discussion, sometimes continuing for a couple of counseling sessions. Finally Pastor threw in the towel (still in good humor) and said that I was smart enough that no matter what he told me, I would always find a way to counter it with something else from the Bible. I also let that stand. But later on, in correspondence with another Christian, a similar remark was made. However, it was not in good humor. And that got me to thinking about the implication of that statement. And it wasn’t long before I rejected it. No matter how smart I am, God is a whole lot smarter than me. There’s no comparison. Now if God finds me in error on this topic, wouldn’t He be able to come up with verses and an explanation that I wouldn’t be able to counter? And wouldn’t a God who has spoken through a donkey and heathen kings be able to speak through a godly Christian pastor or another dedicated servant of the Lord?
More important, Pastor’s continued and steadfast friendship has been highly prized by me. He has always treated me appropriately, in accord with my presentation. He is genuine. He values me as a person and as a Christian. He takes time for my concerns when he derives no tangible benefit from doing so. It is hard enough to find those qualities in anyone, let alone someone who disagrees on such a significant issue.
Now that I know that my transition is no longer secret, I would recommend CBC to anyone in the area. Of course, I would recommend my own church as well!
I will close this by leaving you with two sayings that I have lived by since I started to come out and then a final wrap up.
- If I want to be understood, I need to be understanding.
- If it took me fifty years to deal with this, I can’t expect you to understand this in fifty minutes.
Yes, my presentation (my clothing, voice and mannerisms) has changed somewhat. I am somewhat freer with my emotions and in worship. I cherish the more open friendships that I have with some women now that a glass wall has been removed. I enjoy the private smiles that I receive from other women when we pass by each other with that quiet acknowledgement of our shared sisterhood. But for the most part, I haven’t changed that much. I can still do math, I can still parallel park, I still have a great sense of direction, I still have the same crazy sense of humor, I still like sports and I still love the Lord.
If anyone would like to contact me or meet with me, I would be delighted. If I was ever invited to speak or attend a function at CBC, I would be honored.
Please know that you are prayed for often, loved always and missed very much.
That I may come unto you with joy by the will of God, and may with you be refreshed. Now the God of peace be with you all. Amen. – Romans 15:32-33