By Linda Carter
The Saturday morning I said to myself, “I am so tired of going through this,” was the morning my mother’s prayers caught up to me. She knew I was struggling with lesbianism, and she never stopped praying for me. That morning I fell down at the foot of my bed, lifted my hands up to God and totally surrendered. In that moment, at the age of 33, I was saved.
For as long as I can remember I found myself attracted to women. I didn’t know how to explain what I was feeling inside, and because I thought that sexual and other “worldly” matters were never to be discussed, I never talked about what was going on inside of me. Even though I was raised in a strong and loving Christian home, I carried around this secret for years.
I wanted so badly to be “normal” like all my friends were. In high school they all had boyfriends. They felt comfortable dressing up and wearing make-up, something I did not do except on Sundays. I was comfortable in blue jeans and t-shirts. When I did end up having my first boyfriend in eleventh grade, I still felt attracted to other girls and tried to fight these feelings.
My first sexual encounter with a woman was in the fall of 1980 when I enrolled in a junior college. Everything I wanted in a man, I found in her. Everything started out so wonderful, but she soon betrayed me. She began having affairs. The committed relationship I wanted was not enough for her. She wanted to try it all: other women, drugs and alcohol. I never wanted that kind of life: we went our separate ways. I was comletely devastated.
The pain I felt after our breakup began to show itself as I began drinking and partying obsessively. Though I did not want another love, I started going to gay bars and house parties. I met a lot of other women, but was afraid to get seriously involved with any of them. Eventually I had relationships with six other women, but none of them lasted more than one year. I was living the “gay life” now, but instead of feeling good about it, I felt trapped.
During those years I prayed to God, “When is this roller-coaster ride going to end? Are you ever going to change me?” No matter how hard I prayed, it seemed as if God did not hear me. Finally, I stopped praying altogether. Though I had given up, my mother persevered in her prayers for me. I didn’t know it, but she “stood in the gap” for me. She was a real woman of God and a true and loving mother.
When my mother passed away in the spring of 1985, I became aware of a huge void in my life; it was then I realized that something important was missing. I entered a time of great depression, though God was really beginning to help me come to terms with my desire for women.
Things in my life began to change. My attraction to women began to decrease. When my lesbian friends called me to ask if I would go out with them, I turned them down. I went from being a woman who always went to gay parties and clubs to being a woman whose interest in these activities was disappearing. Eventually I even stopped taking calls from my old friends and ended up changing my phone number.
I began to seek the Lord in every way I knew how: through Christian television and prayer and by reading the Bible. God also led me to a word teaching church. I was hungry for the Lord, and as I focused on Him my desires for women continued to fade.
I started dating a man whose company I enjoyed; he seemed different from any man I had ever met. I thought we could end up getting married. We had a long-distance relationship because I was away at college, but we traveled back and forth to see each other. I began to feel more stongly that he was the man for me. It was at this time, however, that we became sexually involved. I got pregnant, and he broke off our relationship. All my hopes were destroyed, and I was alone again. I thought this man would change my life, but I was wrong. I was very disillusioned, and, after the birth of my son, I went back into the lesbian life. The Lord did not let me go (thank God): He pursued me and brought me out after a short time.
Now I have such peace and joy in my heart. God is working in my life with all His power. I have even had the opportunity to share my past on different occasions. After one night of sharing my story at my church, my son said to me, “Mom, I am so proud of you!” I want the world to see and know that I am glad to be free, and I want to give hope to those who feel hopeless. I also want to encourage those who know people struggling with their sexual identity to continue praying. “The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much,” (James 5:16) as seen from the power my mother’s prayers had in my life.
That Saturday morning her prayers were answered: I repented and asked God to help me. He has. God created me to be a woman, and deep inside of me He has assured me that this is what I am. God comes to give us life, joy and peace. He wants us to experience freedom. What He has done in my life, I believe He can do in your life as well. To God be the glory for redeeming my life from destruction!
Linda D. Carter graduated from Alabama State University with a BA in Communications. She is the Executive Director of Restoration Ministry of Mobile and a member of Nazaree Full Gospel Church. Linda is the proud single parent of one teen-age son; they reside in Mobile, Alabama.
This article is by Linda Carter