In the previous post, I talk about how when I experience an attraction to a guy, not only does my desire have a sexual aspect, but I also desire to befriend him, serve him, and love him like a good friend. These are good desires that are part of my SSA.
Ryan pointed out that in saying that, it could sound like I mean that the desire to befriend, serve, etc. always comes from a homosexual desire. I do not mean that at all. What I am saying is that I experience those things more intensely toward guys that I am attracted to, and that those desires coupled with the physical desire all conspire together to form my experience of a same-sex attraction.
They don't always go together. I definitely feel the desire to love, serve, and befriend guys that I am not attracted to as well. In fact, that is probably how it works for me most often. I am not attracted to every guy, or even most guys, that I am friends with. I guess you could say it like this: When I experience a desire to love my friends well, that does not necessarily mean that I am attracted to them; I feel those desires toward many of my friends that I am not attracted to sexually. However, whenever I experience a physical attraction toward another guy, it almost always includes (or at least is right along side) an intense desire to get to know them and be their friend.
This is how all attractions work, isn't it? Even hetero attraction. I'll give an example. Back in college, I had a great friend whom I spent most of my time with. We did everything together and knew each other really well. Then he got a girlfriend. All of a sudden, all he wanted to do was hang out with her, get to know her, serve her, etc. Along with his physical attraction to her came an intense desire to be her friend. And you can't really divorce that from the physical attraction.
That is my experience as well. My same-sex attractions have many different elements to them - some sinful, some not sinful. Along with the physical desires (bad) come intense desires to befriend and serve, which are good desires.
Couldn't this be an application of 2 Corinthians 12: 9? "But he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in your weakness.'" I experience the weakness of same-sex attraction. And that weakness becomes the very site of the grace of God in which he makes me a better, more Christlike, friend. This should not surprise us. We serve a God who makes beauty from ashes, and uses the schemes of Satan for our good. Praise the Lord that he is that way!
That conversation with Ryan also led to some other interesting thoughts, but I want to devote an entire post to them. Until next time...