What's The Basis For These Beliefs?
Because It is Idolatry to Put More Importance on the Imperfect Bible Over that of the Perfect Holy Spirit (God)*
Hi, everyone. Welcome to Gary Lynn's Home Page. That's me, Gary Lynn, in the picture below when I was a fresh-faced and pretty much naive 17 year old High School Senior at Excelsior High School, class of 1958, in the Los Angeles suburb of Norwalk, California, USA. The trouble was that at the time this picture was taken I had finally figured out that I was bisexual and just the thought of being classified by people in my world as "human garbage" or one of those "half homo rejects" really depressed me. And being really shy, fairly skinny and a late bloomer didn't help. Somehow I got through those years and now, I'm 75 years old and have finally accepted it and moved on. Why did it take me so long? My brief life story below will explain it all.
What is the meaning of our lives?
In other words, what
is the point of you and I being here in this world at this time
during our assigned life spans?
This is a question that most of
us ask ourselves occasionally or at least once at some point in our lives.
And I'm finding that at my
age I think about it a lot. As a follower of Christ with a strong and
active line of communication with God ("prayer life" in Church speak), I believe that He wants me
to make a positive difference in
this world while I'm here,
to unselfishly leave this world a little
better place because I was here. I have already had the fortunate
opportunity to do many useful things for others that have given my life much
meaning, but God's not through with me yet. I believe that He has led me to the conclusion
that my life, with all its accumulated
experiences of good times and bad, things done right and things done wrong, has
taught me many things and that these lessons don't have to just stay with me.
Maybe one more small accomplishment I
can make in my life is to pass on to you the reader, the truthfulness of the above headlines,
the most important of all of the lessons of my life.
If I open the eyes and change the mind of just one person on this controversial
topic, that would be good enough for me.
*lyrics to "Beautiful", CD "Stripped", sung by Christina Aguilera, written and composed by Linda Perry
MY STORY- (and indeed we all have a story):
Self-Hate, Shame and Guilt
At 75 years of age now, many of the specific details of my
difficult youth lived as a bisexual have been lost to the effects of a declining
memory that was never very good to start out with. But the memories of my
feelings of self-hate, shame and guilt beginning in my middle to late teenage
years will always be with me. Why was I drawn into looking at the other boys
changing clothes in the locker room before and after gym class starting in Junior
High? Why couldn’t I be like other boys who exclusively liked girls? I liked
girls alright, but it was my attraction to boys that caused me so much distress.
I desperately didn't want to be this way, an embarrassment, a bisexual.
just was what I was and I couldn't change who I was attracted to no matter how
hard I tried. I just was. . . .
These painful feelings haunted me because of my upbringing in various Independent Christian Churches (Church of Christ) located around Los Angeles, California (these included the Inglewood First Christian Church in Inglewood, California and the Knott Avenue Christian Church in Anaheim, California) who proclaimed then and still do that “God’s word says that Homosexuality is against His Plan.” As a result of my church's teaching I believed that I was defective, that I was in danger of spending eternity in Hell and that I was not good enough for God to love me. Going to church for me was not much fun. But it was all I knew to do so I soldiered on. As a personal comment here: As you will see in this web site I have recently found out that the Bible does not say that homosexuality is against His Plan. In fact all of His committed followers are in His Plan. God does not play favorites as between His Heterosexual and Homosexual Children. Acts 10:34-35 (New Living Translation) Then Peter replied, “I see very clearly that God doesn’t show partiality. In every nation he accepts those who fear him and do what is right.” and Galatians 3:28 (New Living Translation) "There is no longer Jew or Gentile, slave or free, male and female. For you are all one in Christ Jesus."
But mostly I felt really alone in dealing with all
this. Until I was 12 years old as an only child I was raised by my maternal
grandparents (Grandmother Doman was an avid churchgoer) because my parents were
in the Army during World War II and then divorced soon afterward. Then I went to
live with my mother and step-father after a brutal court battle over my custody.
My parents hated each other and made sure that I knew all of their ex’s “evil
ways”. My mother and step-father to say the least had little or no child-rearing
abilities. My step-father was a very intelligent man but rather cold and unable
to express whatever love he might have had for me. Nevertheless, I'll always be
eternally grateful that he paid for my education from 7th grade through high
school and for much of my college education. As for my mother, she was always
critical of me and could never give me instructions without screaming. Although
this doesn't come under the heading of an instruction, I’ll never forget while
standing by her bed only in her lingerie one time when I was 13 or 14 years old
standing across from her, she pointed at her abdomen and blamed me at the top of
her voice for causing the “unsightly” stretch marks as a result of my birth. Before they passed away though I
was able to assure myself that they both loved me, but it was a sentimental and
of love that didn’t help me very much as a teenager or young man.
After I turned 11, my father's side of the family pretty much helped make up in the three months of the summer when I stayed with them for what was lacking in the other nine months that I was with my mother and step-father in North Hollywood and later La Mirada, California. My father and step-mother on their farm in California's San Joaquin Valley (Strathmore, Calif. & Porterville, Calif.) and my paternal grandparents, uncles, aunts and cousins in Redlands, Calif. were generally warm and loving people as contrasted with the distant and cold fish that made up my mother's side of the family whose motto seemed to be, "serious people don't do hugs." But whether I got hugs or didn't get hugs, I found out by their comments towards the end of their lives that all 4 of my parents would have completely rejected and disowned me as a bisexual teenager or man if I had been completely honest about my orientation with any of them. In the end their love for me wasn't as important as their reputations or "What would their neighbors, friends and the family think if they found out?" As a teen, I'm sure that they would have sent me to a "Christian" therapist to get my head straightened out as Mother had an inflated view of what psychologists and psychiatrists could do back then. And remember that back in the 50's and 60's nobody knew anything about homosexuality except that it was thought to be a mental illness, and/or a choice and a disgusting depravity. The first important books and studies by respected theologians, psychologists, psychiatrists, social scientists, anthropologists and other academics that began to seriously question all those hurtful and unfounded beliefs regarding gays weren't written until the 1980's and 1990's. And if I had been honest that I was still a bisexual after all the treatments (since one's sexuality can not be changed as the overwhelming majority of the mental health community now knows), all 4 of my parents would have wanted nothing more to do with me. Yes, I would have lost my family and been out in the street because that was just the way my folks were, well-meaning but too sure of themselves people limited by the knowledge of their times. And without a home base and a family I couldn't have gotten any of the education and jobs I was later able to get. My life in effect would have virtually ceased to exist as it did for others who were more honest about their sexuality.
Now back to my life as it was back then . . . . and though I did have a few honest-to-goodness girlfriends as a teenager and a young man, as a bisexual I wound up never being able to commit myself to a partner, either male or female, even briefly. And to show you how desperate I was to fit in to "normal" society, at about 26 years of age I spent 500 dollars (worth about a 1,000 dollars or more now) on a computer dating club trying to solve my "problem" by trying to find just the right woman, because I figured finding the right woman was the key to solving everything, right? Wrong. Because week after week, dating different hopeful women for over 10 months led me nowhere except more frustration. Was I sexually attracted to many of them? Sure. But the idea of actually living with any one of them had no appeal for me at all. And though I was attracted to several men I met over the years, the idea of setting up house with any of them was just as unappealing. Plus because of the social stigma attached to the idea of 2 men living together as a homosexual couple in the 1960s, I never seriously considered that as an option. So the conflicting feelings continued just as they had been way back in junior high. But though my 4 parents were always suspicious of me, they would never know for sure during their lifetimes about my orientation. I have made a concerted effort over the last few years to forgive them in my prayers in order to truly put that part of my life behind me.
I got a bachelors degree majoring in Accounting from San Diego State University after an obligatory 22 month stay in the Army and even worked hard and passed the required exam and became a CPA. But I turned out to be a lousy accountant and looked around to find out what God really had in mind for my life. I became a lay youth leader in 2 Los Angeles area Christian churches (Westwood Hills Christian Church, Dr. Myron Taylor-pastor; Little Brown Church, Rev. John Wells & Rev. Dr. Laurence Keene-pastors) after figuring out I had an ability for interacting with teens and by working in temporary accounting jobs I was able to support myself and to pay for most of the expenses incurred with the groups for over 7 years. We made some really good memories together as a group: Sunday school classes, Summer and Winter camps in the mountains, weekend get-togethers in the snow at Big Bear Lake, hiking adventures in the Sierras, playing tennis, work trips to an orphanage in Tijuana, Mexico, etc. The parents of these teenagers trusted me with the physical, spiritual and emotional well being of their precious children and I did everything I possible could to honor that trust. The Zweigler family in particular took me into their home, hearts and lives with some extra special hospitality that I will never forget.
Click on the Above Image for More Pictures of The Group
Because I was constantly connected to God asking him to use my attractions to
males for Him rather than letting me use my boys for my selfish sexual pleasure,
I never had a problem with this kind of temptation. Was it always easy?
No, but nothing of value in our lives ever is. God was always there for me
when I needed help to keep me focused on the task he had assigned me. I
asked Him to give me the power to live the life he wanted me to have, then He
gave me the ability and opportunity to do it. The kids in the group were truly a
great bunch and they are still in my
thoughts and prayers to this
Then in 1977, after 2 summers of leading college age groups to work at Niños de México, an orphanage outside of Mexico City I was invited to come back and work full time (ironically because I was a CPA). So I accepted the offer and now have lived in Mexico for over 33 years and have carved out a life for myself. I worked for only 5 years at the Home but ended up staying in Mexico as an English teacher working for both a private language institute located in downtown Mexico City and also for the Universidad Autónoma Chapingo, the main Federal agricultural university in Mexico located in the suburbs of Mexico City, near Texcoco, State of Mexico. It turned out that God gave me the talent for teaching as I loved working with and getting to know so many very special Mexican young people who I found to be very friendly and very intelligent over a 24 year career. I wound up adopting 6 of the older teenage boys as they were ready to leave the Home. We like to say that we adopted each other as they didn’t have a father or a good place to go and I didn’t have any children. I now have 6 mostly happily married sons (Francisco, Armando, Serafín, Rene, Adán and Gilberto) with 13 and counting wonderful grandchildren (see below for their names and the names of my marvelous daughter-in-laws) plus several very special nephews who came from the Home as well. I am now retired and enjoying life to the fullest. I have been able to find all the love I need from God by way of my blood and adopted family and good friends. It all goes to show that God has a plan for all His children, including all the beautiful varieties of homosexuals and bisexuals, not just heterosexuals.
But it wasn’t until I was 65 years old that I found out by reading the books that are
listed in the Bibliography on page 31 that
homophobic message preached by my church just wasn’t true
as you will see for yourself if you work your way through this website. At first
it made me really angry what these pastors, Sunday school teachers and other
church leaders had put me through by passing on such a hateful message about
people like me who were in a minority and just different. But then I calmed down
and realized that most of them were good people who were only passing on ancient
church and societal traditions based on Biblical myths and misinterpretations
that most everybody else believed too. And I believe that many or most of them
had little idea of the harm and pain they were causing.
But one thing, as a bisexual I always thought that I could fake my way through life pretending to be a pure blooded straight man and for the most part I have been able to accomplish this, though some people were suspicious because I never married. Though I know that thoughts of suicide crossed my mind several times as a teenager and in my early 20's when I was feeling really depressed about my bisexuality, my memory is somewhat hazy as to whether I actually ever tried to carry through with these thoughts. Oh, and no, my bisexuality was never my choice. Nobody, least of all me, wakes up one morning and thinks, "I have a great idea, I think I'd like to become a member of a detested minority." Hello!
Proof that Homosexuality is Not a Choice - Try the Test On Yourself!!
So Click Here to see what the test involves and also see the scientific and medical evidence that confirms that homosexuality is not a choice. Homosexuality: Nature or Nurture? (Part 1 of 5). Also On The Same Page "Realizing That You're Different From Others, What a Gay or Lesbian Teen Goes Through"
A Blessing in Disguise
Though I never felt this way until recently, my bisexuality was really a blessing in disguise given to me by God. My life has actually been very good. Jesus never promised us that life would be easy, only that it would be worth it.
Hope for Gay Teens and Young Adults - Never Give Up On Life
So this is the reason for this website - to provide the most reliable information possible to homosexual or bisexual teenagers and young adults who are trapped into anti-gay or homophobic religious situations and give them what I didn’t have, hope. Basically I just want to let you all know that life can be very good despite all the bullies and religious bigots, so don't give up on it in a fit of depression. You are not alone and It Does Get Better after middle school and high school.
If the information I have provided here can improve the life and outlook for just one teenager or young adult, maybe even stop one person from even thinking about committing suicide, that would be good enough for me and make me feel that my life experience dealing with this struggle meant something to someone and it wasn't all in vain.
Here for Part
1, Two Christmas Stories - "Halim's Lament" by
Paul Schroder & "A Gay Christmas Carol" by Bill W
Click Here for Part 2, "Homosexuality is Neither a Choice Nor a Sin - Table of Contents"
Click Here for Part 3, The ♂♂ Stories That Have Grabbed My Heart - "Beyond The Rain" by Grasshopper; "Days of Silence" by Viv;
"God Made Me This Way" by Grant Bentley - Gay High School Love Stories - Overcoming The Barriers
Click Here for Part 4, To Read True, Tragic and Unnecessary Gay Youth Suicide Stories - What Can You Do To Help?
Click Here for Gary
Recommended Sites for Dealing with Homophobia and Discrimination Against Gays in Our Society
Click Here for Gary Lynn's Favorite Sites for Really Good Gay Teen Fictional Stories, Forums, Blogs, Chat Rooms & Message Boards
If you would like to communicate with me, my e-mail address is: email@example.com
Frequently Asked Question: Is there some special meaning to your domain name? Yes, my domain name "lakeweedatarrowhead" comes from the life changing experience I had at Lake Arrowhead which is a popular lake and recreational area in the mountains above Los Angeles, California. It was there when I was a 30 something church high school youth group leader in the early 1970's that I almost lost my life by drowning. I had stupidly decided to swim across the lake with my male teenage charges who were in much better shape than I was, when I became completely exhausted and then when swimming towards the closest shore I got totally entangled with the shoreline lake weed and knew this was probably the end for me. I yelled "help" and was miraculously saved by a strong swimmer who just "happened" to be sunbathing on the shore. After that experience I knew that God had something special planned for my life because by all rights I should have paid the ultimate price because of a bad decision. Of course, after that my nickname in the group was "Lake Weed".
Added Feature: Click for "Two Prayers to Start Out the Day With"
As a teenager and young man, Justin Lee felt deeply torn. Nicknamed "God Boy" by
his peers, he knew that he was called to a life in the evangelical Christian
ministry. But Lee harbored a secret: He also knew that he was gay. In this
groundbreaking book, Lee recalls the events--his coming out to his parents, his
experiences with the "ex-gay" movement, and his in-depth study of the
Bible--that led him, eventually, to self-acceptance.
But more than just a memoir, TORN provides insightful, practical guidance for all committed Christians who wonder how to relate to gay friends or family members--or who struggle with their own sexuality. Convinced that "in a culture that sees gays and Christians as enemies, gay Christians are in a unique position to bring peace," Lee demonstrates that people of faith on both sides of the debate can respect, learn from, and love one another.
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