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Jim Daly Christian Blog and Commentary

When Your Child Struggles with Their Sexual Identity

  • Jim Daly
    Jim Daly is president and chief executive officer of Focus on the Family, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping families thrive.
  • 2016 Sep 01
  • Comments

“Mom, there’s something I have to tell you. I’m gay.”

Ann Mobley’s son, Dan, was 25 when he told her that. She was blindsided. She had never suspected that he was a homosexual and felt woefully unprepared to know how to respond.

What would you do?

The answer to that question can be a dicey subject. There are a lot of very strong opinions out there. The most significant – and increasingly overlooked in our culture – is the biblical viewpoint. Not only does theology address a lot of important questions, Christ Himself shows us how we should respond in circumstances like this.

Consider the woman at the well rejected by her own village, Mary the prostitute, and Zacchaeus the despised tax collector. Jesus offered each one of these broken souls, and others, grace, not condemnation.

Just like those broken people, we all need God’s grace, too, because at our core we all struggle. Jesus said, “Everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart” (Matthew 5:28, ESV).

Each of us is being confronted by an enemy who is trying to snatch away something beautiful that God has created for us – our sexuality expressed through marriage – and gnarl it into some twisted version of itself. That’s just as true for heterosexuals as it is for same-sex attracted people.

That’s why we need grace. Without it, we suffer judgment. But without truth, there are no boundaries and everyone does what’s right in their own eyes. Jesus embodies the perfect balance of those two qualities: “Grace and truth came through Jesus Christ” (John 1:17).

The question is, how can we express the grace and truth of Jesus toward a child who announces he or she is gay?

On today’s and tomorrow’s programs, we’ll have a conversation with Ann Mobley, who will share with us how she has responded to her son’s pronouncement that he is gay. I think you’ll find what she has to share informative and helpful.

Or maybe you’ve encountered that situation already, and you’re worried that you didn’t handle it very well. She’ll offer encouragement to you as well and suggest ways for you to address this issue moving forward.

After you hear the program, I’d be interested in your perspective. If you’re willing, comment below if one of your children has come out as gay. What did you handle well? What would you do differently?

You can hear “When Your Child Struggles with Their Sexual Identity” on your local radio station, online, or via our free, downloadable mobile phone app.


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Publication date: September 1, 2016