My Story

3 Feb

One of my very good friends from college sent me a message on Facebook the other day to let me know she was worried about my salvation. I’m guessing she finally figured out I was gay? I mean—I try so hard to keep that a secret and all. [laughter from the audience]

Let’s just say that my response wasn’t pretty. In fact, I’m ashamed of the way I blew up at her. But once I calmed the eff down, I really took the time to reflect why I had gotten so upset in the first place.

I don’t question my relationship status with God. We’re cool with each other.

But this was digging up old wounds that I let heal a long, long time ago, and I wasn’t prepared to relive that pain again. But with one little ‘ping,’ I was 23 again. I was scared and alone.

After that conversation with my friend, I came to the conclusion that I was never going to tell my story again… that I just couldn’t do that to myself anymore. Every time I recount my journey, I’m not letting the scars fade.

But then I thought about it for a few more days, and if I try to silence my story and never tell it again, no good will ever come from my pain. So as awful as it is to verbalize how being the gay son of a Southern Baptist preacher has affected me, I have to keep telling people about it… because when you know better, you do better. And maybe—just maybe—somebody’s heart will be changed.

This video isn’t my entire story—I’ll save that for another time. This video is just a brief snippet. One of my best friends works for a church, and he asked if I would be a part of a video series to talk about ‘my bad church experience.’

So that’s what we have here. A video. I’ll be honest—I haven’t watched it, nor do I plan on it. I just can’t. I have no idea what kind of editing was done and what parts of my story are left, but I hope my truth remains.


5 Responses to “My Story”

  1. Steph February 3, 2014 at 10:56 pm #

    Bryant, this is an amazing message. I have had my own bad church experience and it’s stopped me from even trying because I know at some point I’ll be uncomfortable and possibly judged. Or even worse, they will want to “fix” me. Thank you for sharing, my friend. You are loved and can always fellowship with me. 🙂

  2. Julia February 4, 2014 at 7:54 am #

    I don’t know you, but I am a part of Grace Fellowship… After watching the video I longed to reach out to you. Just to tell you that I was sorry. Deeply, sincerely sorry for the pain the church has caused you. For being a part of the Church that caused this pain… And for, myself. For all of the times I was too uncomfortable to deal with someone’s pain because I didn’t understand it… That I ran away instead of embracing them with Jesus’s love and letting Him take care of the rest.
    Thank you for sharing your story. It was brave and real and honest.

    • Bryant Miller February 4, 2014 at 9:10 am #

      Hey Julia—thanks so much for reaching out to me. Your sweet words made me tear up this morning. I think it’s equally as brave to be vulnerable and open-minded.

      Let me assure you though, I have no hate in my heart for any Christians. I may not go to church anymore, but I try to follow the Christian values I was raised with—and that’s to forgive people. I have made peace with the church and have forgiven them.

      Hearing from people like you makes doing that video worth it. xo

  3. Jackie Beard February 4, 2014 at 7:42 pm #

    Bryant, we don’t know each other that well but I have always admired how you present yourself as a “real” person. You bring so many people joy, simply by being you. I’ve had someone tell me how inappropriate it is for me to embrace gays. They said I should tell them the truth. To this I respond, Jesus loves you, that is the truth.

    • Bryant Miller February 4, 2014 at 7:50 pm #

      Hey Jackie—thanks so much for the note. It’s true that we may not *really* know each other, but I feel like we know each other’s heart. You’re good people. ❤ xo

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