from My Recommended Reading List (Part 1 of 12)
One of my goals for this blog in 2013 is to spotlight my “Recommended Reading List”. “101 Frequently Asked Questions About Homosexuality” by Mike Haley is the selection for January. To view the complete list of my favorite books on the subject of same-sex attractions, click this link: My List of Recommended Books
For each book “review” I will attempt to:
- Present a quick summary
- Summarize key insights and passages that resonated with me
- And share supplemental resources that feature the author and his work
As I mentioned in an earlier post, I don’t agree with every single idea, concept or thesis discussed in every book on my list. But each selection contributes insight and understanding to the subject.
“101 Frequently Asked Questions About Homosexuality” is not a politically correct book and the author does not advocate moral relativism. And I have to admit – Haley’s direct counsel and firm stance on Biblical principles even startled me in a couple of places. But he is sensitive, sincere and consistent throughout.
The author made a wise decision to begin by reiterating the danger and folly of labeling (stereotyping) people and making snap judgments. No matter which “side of the issue” we are on, we shouldn’t let our assumptions, biases, subjective experiences, lack of understanding or intolerance negate or blindly lead us to ignore, dismiss, attack or diminish another person just because he has sincere (but different) beliefs, values or opinions. We should speak to the other person’s humanity. Genuinely make the effort to understand and relate to him or her as an individual.
To preview this book online, click the Google Books link below. Here’s a breakdown of the content . . .
- Answering the Basics (5 questions)
- Answers for Families (19 questions)
- Answers for Friends (11 questions)
- Answers for the Church (8 questions)
- Answers for Men (7 questions)
- Answers for Women (6 questions)
- Answers for Those Desiring Change (9 questions)
- Answering Theology (8 questions)
- Answering Culture (11 questions)
- Answering the Gay Community and Agenda (10 questions)
- Answering Science (5 questions)
- Answering Your Need (2 questions)
Key Insights and Passages
Mike Haley’s answers to these four questions in particular impressed me the most:
- To what extent should a gay father (living with another man) be involved in the lives of his children?
- I have made the decision to leave homosexuality. What do I need to know? What have you seen in the lives of those who are successful?
- What is a mentor’s role when helping women who struggle with same-sex attraction?
- How can I inform my parents that I have embraced my sexuality and am not ready to change? I tried the whole “change thing” for a while, but I’m just not ready. How do I let them know without hurting or offending them?
When I recently reread this book to write this post, a small section stood out. It is about a frustration I and other guys (with whom I’ve conversed over the years) share as we contend with SSA. Where we place our focus and attention (as it relates to our thought life) is continuously tricky and problematic. It may seem obvious or insignificant, but here’s the quote. . .
“While attempting to overcome your homosexual fantasies and attractions, you are far more aware of them, even as you tune into your desire to be successful. So the very thing you are trying to not think about is all you can think about.
This is why accountability is so important in the beginning stages of your healing process. You are trying to give up something that used to dominate your thoughts and may still be doing so.” – page 112
As a matter of personal application, this is a much-needed reminder for me to fortify my accountability relationships with other men and to create new buddy-type friendships. I also need to continually reorient my mental engagement with the life-giving counsel of God’s Word.
Links and Resources
VIDEO: Click here to see Mike Haley answering several questions about homosexuality in a Q&A at the Oasis Church in California (5o minutes)
How should the experiences (real or perceived) of an individual with same-sex attractions influence how Christians relate to him or her?
As always, I welcome your comments.
© Darrell Martin and SameSexAttractions.wordpress.com, 2013.
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