My 12 years as a correspondence counselor for Love In Action (an ex-gay ministry that has since changed its name to Restoration Path) gave me much joy. Now, 18 years after reluctantly resigning my position for personal reasons, I still believe in its objective of helping people turn away from homosexuality and toward a life of obedience. In several respects, I praise the Lord for His grace in allowing me to serve Him through that organization.
Having said that, the years since my resignation have changed my perspectives on many aspects of my involvement with LiA. In writing about my time in this ministry, I don’t mean to blame, embarrass or slander my co-workers or superiors. My disagreements with their theologies and policies in no way diminish my love and respect for them. Yet I no longer see their approach to ministry as being Bible-based. More importantly, I see many of my attitudes and actions during that 12 years as dishonoring to the Lord.
Obviously, my attitudes reflect solely on me. Therefore, I can write about them without fear of impugning anybody else. But I also promoted psychological ideas and misused Scripture in accordance with the teachings of LiA, even when I knew that I compromised God’s Word.
My readers need to know the truth about my sin for a few different reasons.
Firstly, in understanding how I used Love In Action for selfish purposes, perhaps my readers can avoid the same mistakes in their area of service to the Lord. I plan to spend Monday’s blog post explaining how I used the ministry selfishly, and what I’ve foolishly lost as a result of my self-serving attitudes. I can’t change what I did, but I pray I might inspire my readers to serve Christ for His glory rather than their own.
Secondly, my readers need to see that I’ve fallen into many of the doctrinal deceptions that I now call into question. Love In Action operated from a Charismatic theology, and sometimes combined Biblical truth, psychological principles and a little mysticism. Once in a while, I struggled with conviction that we strayed from Scripture, but I wanted their acceptance and approval more than I wanted truth. My readers need to see that I all too well understand the compromises that evangelicals make.
Finally, I’d like my readers to learn from my mistakes. Okay…from my sin. I grieve over the ways that I squandered the ministry that God had entrusted to me. I regret that I failed in honoring Christ as completely as I should have. My counseling letters rightly empathized with the emotional pain of my clients, but I wrongly focused on Jesus as their Healer rather than on their responsibility to obey Him. May my readers see that Christian ministry draws people to exalt Christ whether He alleviates their suffering or not.
Despite all my errors during my years with Love In Action, I praise God that He can instruct my readers through the acknowledgment of those errors. Indeed, He is glorious.