A Second Coming Out

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Caveat: The intent of this piece is not to prove that I am right. The ultimate intention is to unite us as humanity in the plight we all inevitably face - our reckoning with our own mortality - and to encourage a society that allows the individual to have the freedom to explore this in their own way.


"Christianity, if false, is of no importance, and if true, of infinite importance. The only thing it cannot be is moderately important"
- C.S. Lewis

This piece has been the hardest for me to post but also the most true to what I have ever wanted to say. I thought about just not posting at all, but we always have to share what we believe in even when it's scary. Also, we're all going to die one day and I would most certainly posthumously kick myself if I did die tomorrow before I had the chance to share this, so here we go.

"Why don't Christians just mind their own business?"

Something sad happened in Pattaya recently. While I was performing, I met a fellow performer who had everything by the age of 26. He was tall, successful, kind, charismatic, youthful and one of the most famous dancers in the entire world. And suddenly, just hours after we had been dancing together, he left us. I felt so sad ... and also so helpless ... all I could do was hope that wherever he had left us for, he was okay and happy.

And that was a reminder why Christians don't mind their own business.

Say you were at a party, and somehow you knew that there would be an explosion that would kill everybody. Would you not warn your friends, family and immediate company? Of course you would. Similarly, say one truly believed that at the end of human life, there would be an irreversible fate of eternal life or eternal death, wouldn't they encourage their friends, family and company to the better result? Of course they would - and that is the Christian perspective.

Do you ever wonder when you are going to die and where you will go afterward? Are you of the belief that you will disappear into nothingness, or do you think, in this world where the sun watches over us by day and the moon by night that our existence amounts to something more?

For those who are part of the LGBT+ community, I know this is especially hard and confusing. I used lie in bed at night, crying and praying to God that he would change me. As I grew into my adolescence, one of the greatest pains was seeing my fellow Christian friends dating, getting engaged and marrying. Yes, I was so happy for them, but this burned me inside as I kept the secret of my sexuality hidden, thinking that I could not find love or build a family in the traditional sense.

So I am trying to reckon with my destiny as a gay man who believes in God and the Bible, but also loves my family, friends and fellow human being - whether you are gay or straight, or however you'd like to identify.

As a gay Asian man growing up in Australia, I empathise with any minority who has been marginalised. I have experienced the hatred and violence we have been subject to for the history of mankind. When I came out in the church, I lost all of my friends I had growing up and by no other group have I felt more othered. Today, most of my friends are gay, I run a LGBT support group and am the poster boy of many LGBT pride events - so by default, I am the one who the conservatives hate.

"If I have faith to move mountains, but I have not love, I am nothing"1 Corinthians 13:2

But Christians who hate are not my kind of Christians. I want you to know that there are Christian whose views are also not modernly liberal but are still rooted in love.

If you are reading this and you truly don't care that you are going to die and/or have no regard for what happens to you after, then my words might not mean anything to you, but if you mindset that you are open to considering new idea, please keep reading.

Anyone who quotes Bible verses about shellfish or pork prohibition knows nothing about the Bible. I studied Theology in college and was a Sunday School teacher, and can tell you that modern day Christianity stems from a personal and loving relationship with God through Jesus Christ and everything flows from this. Legalism and rules in themselves are dead and useless.

Did you know the one's who coordinated Jesus's crucifixion in the Bible were actually religious and legalistic, and Jesus himself denounced them. So know that any higher-than-thou "Christians" you come across, Jesus denounces them too.

The Christian view is that the world was created by God for humanity and that God gave humanity free will to live by His design, but this led to humanity straying away from God's design. Because of this, God chose to slowly depart from humanity and the world.

Many people ask, why did God create a world with war, disease and sadness? Everything God originally created was actually good, but only became "not good" when God started to depart from the world - like how darkness isn't the opposite of light, it is the absence of light. In this way greater wars, disease, disasters and sadness in the world are signs of God's increasing absence as He parts from our world and with that also His omnipotent sustenance. And the ultimate sign of God's departure is death.

Living in a dying world like this could feel hopeless, and it was until what Christians believe as the death of Jesus that pays for humanity's deviance from God's design and allows us to mend our relationship with God and have access to His eternal sustenance again.

It's hard for me to explain, and some of you probably think I am crazy. Do you ever feel like someone or something is watching over you? Try imagining that entity, without putting any of your own assumptions on this entity, and seriously speak to it with an open heart and reverence. I call that prayer and I believe that is the beginning of connecting with God, and He speaks back, and you slowly learn who He is.

Christianity is about this relationship and this brings so much joy, peace and hope into my life, and it is not about being perfect at all. I am the furthest from perfect, in fact please know that I am what most Christians would call a bad Christian. When Jesus was on earth, he befriended and loved the prostitutes, the diseased and people the general public othered. Like them, I feel the least of all people, but I am trying.

I am not sharing this because I am trying to prove I am right. In a world that cares so little about tomorrow, what I want to leave you with maybe just a thought that perhaps this universe offers something more than just death at the end of life. I encourage you to explore all different beliefs and ideologies before it's too late, and maybe Christianity could be one of them.

Wishing you all the joy, love, happiness, peace and freedom, in this life and the next.

Sorry I just couldn't mind my own business.

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16 comments

  1. Hi Jono. I am not Christian but that was a darn good read. Thank you for being so honest and it's okay for you to believe what you want to.

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    1. Hello! Thank you for following and reading. The point of this article is not for you to share the same beliefs as I, but just to consider your existence. You believe what you want and I believe what I want and we respect each other. If there is some crossover, we can share that.

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    2. Jono you are brilliant and wonderful and I am comforted by your words.

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  2. Respecting your beliefs even though I do not share them.

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  3. I knew that you are incredibly fit, handsome, & open but didn't know that you're a Christian. I think that it's important that you proclaimed your faith in Jesus. I was a straight Christian but can't reconcile my life now as a gay man for almost 10 years with my biblical theology.

    Perhaps it feels different for me because I wasn't gay from the beginning but "converted" over kind of like you convert to Christianity or some other faith as both a lifestyle & as a big part of who you are now as a person.

    I support you for having the courage to write that post & I think that it will encourage others to believe in Jesus.

    May God bless you in your journey!

    -Frank

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    1. Hello Frank! Thank you reading, for the kind comment and for sharing a little about yourself. I hope in any way that this article was helpful to you, even if it just shows you that someone else is going through a similar journey to you.

      You care about your existence and are trying to figure that out. As long as you have God in mind, He will guide you through it.

      Nothing but love from me, and I hope and pray for your continued faith brother as we run the race set before us. God bless!

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    2. Thanks bro. Faith by its very definition is believing in what you cannot be seen. It's too easy for me to focus on what I see.

      Exercise your faith like you exercise your body or else the natural man becomes too strong and overcomes the spiritual man & takes him prisoner.

      May the Lord bless you in your journey,

      Frank

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  4. How come after dancing, a few hours later he left this world?

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  5. My favorite photo set of yours. Where did you take these photos?

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    1. Thank you! In a dry salt lake far into the LA desert :)

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  6. Hi Jono, I've been semi following your story for about 8 or 9 years. I first found you on Tumblr as a gay Christian. I just want to say as a gay Christian that's also Asian, thank you. Thank you for being the light in the darkness. Thank you for being one of my only sources of hope when I didn't know where to turn. I used to read your long written posts years ago on Tumblr and they gave me hope to keep on going. I'm still not fully out and not ready to be, but I'm so encouraged and inspired by your words. I haven't felt such wisdom and relatability together in a long time. I can't mind my own business and I pray that you'll always be like that too. Love and blessings.

    - Matthew

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    1. Thank you for your kind message - it means a lot. Our position in this world is unique and I am glad to have shared the experience of being gay, Christian, and Asian with you. My only hope in my writings was that anyone who read it would feel even a semblance of comfort, knowing that there was someone else that was going through the same things as them. I am glad that I could have been that for you, and in turn you are a comfort to me by posting your kind comment. Nothing but the best, all of the love, and let's keep not minding our own damn business. God bless.

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  7. Thank you Jono for posting this piece. I have lost touch with God over time, because I too identify as a gay Christian and have been pushed away by the "holier than thou" Christians.

    With your thoughts and encouragement, I will continue to look up, listen and repair my relationship with God. I've always believed God will not abandon me, but I have realized it was I who abandoned God as well as myself. Thank you again for your strength and courage. You have inspired me.

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    1. Hi Tommy - I share the same experience with you, and we must remind each other than any thought that God would ever abandon us is actually a lie. Like I tried to convey in my photos, let us continue to run the good race (it'll be long, hard, lonely because it is down the narrow path), knowing full well that it will be absolutely worth it. You inspire me. God bless.

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