His Spirit Is Crying out and Yearning

Let me tell you a story of a person who’s family was religious, not spiritual, who has walked a path of hardship, loneliness, denial, and violation within the society called “church;” who feels drawn to spirituality.  This person wants trust and acceptance in a community of spiritual believers, not judged, condemned or rejected for the path he walks today.  From the “get-go,” she felt out of sorts, neither fully female nor fully male. She ran with a group of boys during the week, but on weekends her parents tried to put her in dresses.  She hated that from an early age: it felt contrary to who she was.  Her family was religious, not spiritual. She went to a revival meeting about the age of ten, accepted Christ and was baptized that night.  When her dad, a deacon in the church, found out (someone told him before she got home) he beat her because she did this without his permission. At the time, she was devastated and hurt, not just physically but emotionally. Years later she came to recognize that was the first time she was spiritually hurt. By later elementary school years through high school she was tormented and humiliated by the other girls for being different and not developing physically as they were. The boys generally ignored her gender marker society had tagged her at birth because she could and did compete successfully with them in sports and really didn’t look like a girl. As she grew into a teen, she didn’t turn from the church but yearned for knowledge.  She took every adult class she could, but this only furthered the rift she felt with her peers.
Her spirit was crying out and yearning.
The youth pastor took her into his confidence to teach her what a proper woman is to do. He betrayed her trust and violated her spiritually, emotionally and physically for his own personal gratification.  She was devastated. She then walked away from church for many years, though her spirit was still calling out.  By her early twenty’s, she found the yearning of her spirit too great to ignore and was drawn back to the church in another town. Here she felt forced to take on traditional female roles. By this time she was dressing more masculine or neutral, which matched her physical appearance and was unacceptable to the church community.. This caused her great emotional turmoil and ostracism.  Again, she walked away, feeling alone and rejected.
Her spirit was crying out and yearning.
She moved to another state and finally gave in to society, took a husband and gave birth to a child. She did not conform to society’s demands, though, in her dress, appearance or mannerisms, and was often taken for a male.  Again, the yearning in her spirit persisted so she tenuously reached out to another church community. All seemed well at first.  Her husband allowed her to join mission teams to build churches, which suited her well, but in time, through a series of manipulations over several years and abuse by her husband, she severed her connection with the community. Then eventually she with her three-year-old child ended up in her birth state in a shelter and her husband on death row.
Her spirit was crying out and yearning.
Over the following four years she picked herself up, got out of the shelter system and went to college and discovered she was not alone in this world: there are others like her. In time, after a lot of research, a lot of “now what do I do with this information,” “how do I proceed,” and “do I walk away and ignore this,” she decided to proceed.  Finally, after everything she had walked through, she now knew it was not her fault and she was not abnormal, just part of a hidden society that heterosexuals wish would go away and does nearly everything possible to inflict pain, judgment and ostracism. She is a male with some physical gender characteristics of a female – or a female to male transgender. His spirit starts crying out and yearning. Again, he tenuously is reconstructing trust.  That is complicated.  On one side he is loved and accepted in his local church community.  Some know of his transgender identity and some do not.  On the other hand, he is aware of the conflict in the larger church community concerning GLBT issues. He hears from that group that he is a sinner and does not belong in Christ’s community because he is not acting like a woman, consistent with a set of female physical characteristics, while ignoring that dominant part of him that is physically, emotionally and spiritually male.
His spirit starts crying out and yearning.
I am a Christian.  I want to be accepted and loved among the followers of Christ, as Christ has loved and accepted me. I want again to trust.  But, it is difficult when I hear muffled, but angry, judgment of who I am.

Next blog post: Niebuhrs’ Moral Man and Immoral Society               https://wordpress.com/post/lovejudgenot.wordpress.com/587

His Spirit Is Crying out and Yearning

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