For such a time as this

This weekend, members of the TBGL group will be flying in from around the world to attend our second annual retreat and we are delighted to have an opportunity to worship, learn, and grow together. Some outsiders have asked us what the group all about; the question either asked out of genuine interest, or as a more veiled question, suggesting perhaps that our group constitutes so called “conversion therapy”.

Truth is, we are a group of Christians who have two things in common:
  • A passionate love of Jesus
  • A shared background of SSA

These two things have drawn us together, our shared desire; to glorify Jesus in and through our lives, and an acknowledgement that our shared experiences enable us to understand each other better, something a lot of us have discovered is difficult to find in our own church communities.

Our focus as a group is very much on our shared passion for Jesus and not on our shared background.  Each week as we meet, we study the word, we worship, and we commit to pray for each other.  Recently we have been led by one of the group members in a study on the Spiritual Armour, and Spiritual warfare, which has been really enlightening.  Other sessions have included a couple of weeks of shared feedback from the Global prophetic alliance conference, hearing more about what God is saying to the church today, as well as a range of other Bible based teachings. Every so often we have a testimony night; it’s such a blessing to hear what God is doing in the lives of our friends in the group, and of course, during discussion times, if someone is having temptations, struggles or fears of any kind, we listen, support and pray, like any small group would.

So why a group specifically for those who have left their LGBT roots for Jesus?
 
Because in the main, the church is not yet ready to support people who have left a gay identity. Some churches are liberal, some have people sitting on the fence.  Others have no idea that temptation is not sin and still others think the solution is marriage. Some simply don’t talk about sex at all, issues such as adultery, porn use or co-habitation are never spoken about or addressed.

Some group members are reticent to share their background with their church family because of a fear of what will be said, of the perceived double standards that are in place when it comes to sexuality.  It’s liberating for them to find a group which is not judgmental and that provides a safe environment to speak what’s on their heart.

Not only that, but through starting this group we have discovered like-minded people who freely choose total surrender to Christ.  People who are hungry to meet with Him on a daily basis, who have a thirst to grow spiritually and who understand the concept of picking up their cross daily.  It’s such a blessing to all of us to journey together as sisters and brothers in Christ because there is a shared desire to get closer to God and delve deeper into his word.  It's the most challenging small group I've ever belonged to, and the most supportive and loving.

We are believing for great things this weekend.  We want to partner with God and see where he wants us to partner with him, the feeling is that this group, like Esther, is here “for such a time as this”.

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