Written by Linda Italiano
It wasn’t always like this. I didn’t always enjoy a life full of quality friends, days spent productively, and a real understanding of why I am on this earth. No, just a few short years ago I stayed mostly in the house and isolated myself. I was afraid to live and afraid to die. Allow me to back up and fill you in as to what led to this amazing transformation in my life.
I grew up with three brothers in a nice house in a nice neighborhood. I was a high achiever and an active kid. However, my mother was an anxious woman and, in turn, I was an anxious child. I took solace in athletics and playing the piano, but an injury took athletics away from me when I was fourteen and my piano playing fell away a few years later.
In 1980, a month before I turned eighteen, my older brother was killed in a car accident. This was the event that changed everything for me. I went from a stable person with goals and dreams to an angry, hopeless, directionless person. My family started growing apart immediately after the accident as we each dealt with the loss separately. This began many years of victim mentality thinking, which hindered me in a big way as it colored all of my decisions going forward.
In 1980, the drinking age was eighteen, much to my detriment. It had become increasingly difficult for me to spend time at home because my mother was taking out all of her unhappiness and hurt on me. I had become her target for all that was lost in our family. I began to spend much of my time in bars. I drank to excess from the start and I quickly became an alcoholic. I also met a woman who introduced me to lesbianism. I chose this lifestyle for thirty years or so until I became a Christian in 2014.
Drinking for me was like a job. I lived in fear of withdrawal and tried unsuccessfully to walk that line between maintenance drinking and blackout drinking. Blackout always won. This lasted until the age of thirty-three when I finally stopped drinking.
Even though I was sober, I was aware that there was still a huge void in my life. I started living a more solitary existence and was full of fear. I had very little self worth and was settling for crumbs from people in my life when I should have been expecting more.
I developed a plan. I was going to find a woman who would treat me well and I would spend the rest of my life with her. I had convinced myself over the years that I was born a homosexual, even though there was evidence to the contrary, and I thought this was the only path I could take. Being around homosexuals for so long, the idea was reinforced in me that I was only attracted to women and that same-sex attraction was a positive thing.
It wasn’t until I started attending church in early 2014, that I saw a different way of living and thinking. This was where my plan and God’s plan collided. As I began attending week after week, I started to understand the Word of God, but I had it in my mind that lesbianism was going to be the deal breaker. I thought that if the church wasn’t going to condone it that I would leave. I also thought that once everyone found out about me I would be asked to leave or I would feel unwelcome.
Thankfully, I was wrong about all of this. I requested a meeting with the pastor where I told her everything and I was met with love and respect. I was also shown exactly what the Bible says about homosexuality and it was made clear to me that it was unacceptable and wrong. I came away from that meeting still feeling welcome and accepted in the church, but understanding that homosexuality is a sin like any other sin. I understood that the Word of God is more important than anything else, and He is the answer to all of my problems. It did not take very long before I was completely delivered from the homosexual lifestyle and I totally renounced it. God did for me what I had been unwilling or unable to do for myself.
The rewards have been many. Today, I walk in God’s light and endeavor to be Christ-like in all that I do. By not living for myself and living for God, a beautiful thing has happened. I can live courageously and fearlessly, keeping my eyes on Him and not on me.
God has begun restoring me in every way. I had not played the piano for over twenty-five years and that has been restored to the point where I am on the praise and worship team at church. I am more joyous and free than I have ever been. I have a church full of people that I love and that love me. I am eternity-minded rather than focused on what society says is important and valuable. I am now walking in God’s will. I am no longer afraid to live and no longer afraid to die. I am free at last and I owe it all to the Lord Almighty!
If you want to give your heart to the Lord and receive all the blessings God has in store for you just say a prayer like this: Father God, I make you the Lord of my life. Come into my heart. I repent of my sins and please forgive me for sinning against You. I accept Jesus as my personal Lord and Savior. I believe that You died on the cross for me and that I am now saved and born again. Now go and live like it!
SOURCE: Charisma Magazine