When I was 15 or 16 I won a PSP at my church youth group. For those of you that don't remember what a PSP was, it was one of the first personal devices for teens and children to play PlayStation games on. I remember that night I went home happy I won such a pricey device I would not have bought for myself. I ended up selling it to someone for 200 bucks!
But that night as I was in my room trying to figure out this new device, I'm not really savvy with tech stuff, my concern was whether or not it had internet. Once I figured out it had internet,
I went straight to googling “naked men.”
Most men see porn from the ages of 8-11 for the first time. A lot of my friends told me they first saw it on their father's computers. I'm actually quite intrigued many Christians, especially women, don't think their husbands or friends have seen porn or even struggle with looking at it, and there is quite a lot of shame that falls on men for dealing with this, but I won't be talking about that today.
When I was growing up, we never had a computer in our house so those issues never came up. That is why my first look at porn was when I was 15 or 16.
But I didn't look at just “porn.”
I looked at “Gay Porn.”
There is a difference.
Geeze, I'm glad I got that off my chest (That's what he said! cause gay.”- Michael Scott).
Why did I go straight for the “naked man googling” when I got this device?
Well, as a kid I went through some sexual abuse, but for me it wasn't traumatic the way others go through sexual abuse. Nevertheless, the idea of a man was sexually pleasing to me. Since my encounters stopped around the age of 12, right in the middle of puberty, from 12-16 men became foreign to me. I wanted to see men, feel men, be like certain men, have their persona, have their bodies, be known by these men, and I wanted to lust after them and their bodies.
I wanted what they had. I wanted to be taller, white, bigger, I wanted them, their athletic abilities, their blonde hair, their blue eyes. I hated my body. So this desire in me to see a naked man was for a multitude of complex reasons. This was the only tangible way I can repair my own self-esteem as a 16-year-old who didn't know what the hell was going on in me.
This was the only way I can know masculinity, and be known by it.
This was the only way I can know a male deeply.
As I was doing some research on this topic of gay porn, I ran into some interesting stats from the website Pornhub.
And here are some stats about Pornhubs gay use from across the pond in England.
When I first saw these stats, it reminded me of something I read quite awhile back,
This post is addressing a bigger conversation that is occurring within the gay community. As much as the gay community is all about acceptance, tolerance, be true to yourself, it's far from those ideals.
Masculinity is the god in the gay world.
You are either trying to be masculine and be the TOP and fuck a bottom, which I think makes gay men feel good about themselves.
Or you are a Bottom wanting masculinity to be in you and so you are fucked by a top, hoping this satisfies your desire for masculinity approval.
There is a lot that goes with these ideas I am presenting, but I am also not going to directly address that.
What I want to talk about is this need for masculinity these gay men want and how gay porn satisfies that want in a fake, shallow, and addictive way, and how the Church is more powerful than gay porn and can offer this healthy need for masculinity in 3 ways.
1. The Church can offer the male intimacy that gay porn can't.
A. Through Touch
2. The Church can offer an actual male body that gay porn can't.
A. Through Touch
3. The Church will help with the healing process and the redemption that God desires for his children that gay porn can't.
A. Through Touch
One of the most fascinating stats about gay porn was how much categories were tied to "Straight men" in the U.S. and in England.
Straight first time
straight guy tricked
I can't address the "Black" category. Even now I have been doing tons of reading and searching to figure that out and it's hard to pinpoint the reason for that.
When I look at these stats, what I am seeing are men looking for the God-given need for same-sex intimacy, friendship, healthy male experiences such as the locker room, college roomates.
Yes, some of the categories are gross, manipulative, scary, straight up evil and sinful.
But that is what Satan and our sinfulness have done to our beautiful home called earth and beautiful family called humanity.
These gay men and Christians who struggle with homosexuality are watching gay porn and are longing for same-sex intimacy and Satan is tricking them! They are also weak and giving in.
And guess what!?
The Church, with the help of the Holy Spirit,
sent by Jesus,
sent by the Father,
has given the Church the ability to save, carry the burdens, be a light to the sinners who need the saving grace of Christ.
They are the hands and feet of Christ.
Why do these men want to watch a "straight first-time" man having gay sex?
Becuase there is intimacy they are longing for that Christian men can give them through hugs, time, vulnerability spiritually, emotionally, and physically(like the locker room and showers), and teamwork (fighting loneliness).
Why are "Straight men" being searched on gay porn? Because these men are looking for what they feel they don't have,
The Church can offer healthy masculinity through transparency. The Church can talk about what it means to be a man. What it means to be a strong man, a weak man, a compassionate man, an artsy man. What insecurities you have as a man. What hurts you have as a man. What sexual abuse you have been through as a man, and trust me, many straight Christian men have gone through same-sex abuse as a child.
Let's be vulnerable and talk about that!
Let's talk about the body. Is your penis small? Are you chubby? Are you afraid of what other men think of your body? Can you fight? Are you good looking enough to get a girl? Are you smart enough? Are you looking for the approval of other men?
Straight men who are confident with their masculinity and understand who they are as a follower of Jesus and as a man have the ability to walk alongside Christians that struggle with homosexuality, really their masculinity, and help them exercise those male qualities that are unique to them! To walk around knowing you are male simply because you are and no other male body can give you what you already have. His penis isn't yours, his blonde hair isn't yours, his nice gold Californian tan isn't yours, It's mine, when I have it.
You are you, and that is great!
These gay men and Christians that struggle with homosexuality shouldn't have to "Seduce straight men" or "trick straight men" to experience the intimacy of being male together.
The Church in a healthy appropriate platonic and confident manner can offer their bodies as friends would for each other. Through touch, hugs, celebratory punches, cuddling.
The gay man in his article wrote, he was happy to be cuddling with this man that he just had sex with but knew this wasn't going to last. I would love for him to know that the Church can offer this type of touch. I know that is scary, but is it really sinful or unhealthy to offer a cuddle?
Is it weird and awkward for a Christian man to offer this, well, it sure is.
But the more and more Christians have to hear the desires and longings that are deep within teenagers and adults who struggle with homosexuality they are going to have to realize that they can't keep saying "Give it to God." It's not going to work like that. We will lose tons and tons of young adults to the gay community who offers that.
Also, Christian men who struggle with homosexuality shouldn't feel like they need to seduce, hide, manipulate, "trick straight men" into feeling like one of the guys in the locker room, the skinny dipping spontaneous late-night thrill, the moment when you guys are both changing and glance and each other and see each other's nuts. Christian men should be normal with these Christian men that struggle with homosexuality and walk alongside them as they learn to desexualize this normal healthy experience.
This isn't reparative therapy either.
This is learning how to respect and understand boundaries and also
Just being normal.
It's just a penis. It's a part of us and it's funny that is why men do the helicopter in the locker rooms and showers. Having a penis and showing it off in locker rooms during the craziness of team environments and brotherhood and just roomatehood helps Christian men realize, they need to treat these friends and brothers as friends and brothers. All parts of them. Their spirituality, their emotions, and their bodies.
Gay porn is trying to offer the teamwork that these Christian men are trying to find.
and the Church is better!
The Church offers reality.
It offers friendship.
Long-term lifelong friendship.
It offers shoulders to cry on. Friends to hold your hand at night as you are in pain. Friends to celebrate birthdays with. Births to celebrate, marriages to celebrate, helping your friend's after they had a surgery. Hearing their hurts and pains as they are married looking to you for help and advice. The Church has gifts to give, thoughtful affections and services.
It has the chance to give that intimate moment when a fellow brother or sister looks into another Christian's eyes (who struggles with homosexuality) as they turn their head down because they are not used to real true intimacy, and say,
"I am here for you, and you belong to me and my family and we are in a friendship together and I need you just like you need me. And together we will walk alongside each other as we learn what it means to serve and love God and do the same for others."
"We are one."
That is way better than a night in the dark hiding with shame at the 5 minute video of men being pleasured by each other.
That is a lie!!!!
It's not real and it won't help the Christian that struggles with homosexuality receive and give the love and intimacy they need.
To my Christian brothers, church leaders, friends,
Ask your Christian brothers you know that struggle with this if they watch gay porn?
Don't be afraid of the answer.
Ask them what do they watch and why they watch it.
This gets to the truth and healing and battle and low self-esteem issues they are dealing with.
And get ready to offer the 4T'S. Friendship. Church Community. Church rebukes. Adventures. Vulnerability. Your time. Your life. Your body.
This is a battle over the body. If we keep thinking Christians that struggle with homosexuality or their masculinity only need our spiritual wisdom and not our bodies, then we are not going to get to the blessings of walking with our brothers who deal with this and we will lose them to the community that is offering their bodies.
Gay porn is fake.
The Christian Church is Real!
We have bodies, intimate non-sexual experiences of touch and vulnerability.
We are better than that!
We have way more going for us than gay porn.
Adam was trying to know God on the level of God and ate something that gave fake truth to him.
And God was trying to Know Adam on Adams level, by just walking with him. Maybe a skinny dip here and there.
And the son came to our level and walked with us in our human body.
He wasn't afraid to get physical with us.
The church shouldn't either with the struggling children of God.
The Holy Spirit is redeeming them too! Transforming their minds to the perfect will of God.
To know each other the way we ought to know each other.
As friends, brothers, sisters, fathers, mothers,
As the Church.