“If our only message is that through enough effort and faith they will become heterosexual, we are misleading them. We mislead them by setting the wrong standard for what counts as success.
Heterosexuality is not the measure of success for the Christian sexual minority. What matters is Christlikeness regardless of whether sexual attractions change significantly” (pages 164, 165).
Yarhouse’s hope, in the end, is that individual Christians and the church in general will move from debating issues for which there are no definitive answers and focus instead on issues of identity, sanctification, and stewardship.
I appreciated Yarhouse’s tempered tone and careful consideration of the various points of view within the church and the psychology community. His logical presentation made sense and was easy to follow. His bulleted list of “Take-home Points” at the end of each chapter helped me consolidate what I had just read. He was even able to explain tests and research projects in easy-to-understand language.
From this book I learned that dealing with homosexuality is not as simple as I had always thought. Yarhouse talks about the discovery of same-sex-attractions in different age groups and life situations in three chapters that speak specifically to parents of children and teens, parents of adult children, and adults whose spouses announce a gay identity. This breakdown helped me understand the complexities, challenges, and possible ways of handling the various scenarios (like the mother of a five-year-old, worried her son will be gay because of his interest in feminine things, or a wife, finding her husband’s same-sex pornography on the computer).
This thoughtful and thought-provoking book makes many excellent points. I think evangelical pastors, counselors, and teachers of any denomination will benefit from reading it. Additionally it will be of interest and help to parents, partners, friends, and siblings of same-sex-attracted youth and adults.