My Gay Son Leads Me Closer to God
Updated: May 14, 2020
By Connie Hubble
The bikes were the last items shoved into the twenty-four-foot U-Haul before we shut the door on broken dreams, broken hopes, and broken promises. With a hint of irony, the date was April Fool’s Day, 1999, and I was fleeing my bankrupt life in Fairfield, California. Emotionally and physically spent, I was leaving behind a failed marriage, a foreclosed house, and a gay son to start over in Colorado. Somehow, I thought my existence would be easier if I just got away from the “problems” instead of facing them and coming to a reconciliation between my religious beliefs and the reality of my life.
Before taking the driver’s seat, I accepted my eldest son Robbie’s request that we take one last walk around the block, yet neither of us could find the words we wanted so desperately to convey to each other. With heads bowed and thoughts racing, the stress of the impending separation squeezed the words, but not the conviction, I wanted to impart.
“Robbie, I know you’ve been struggling with some issues for a few years now, and I want you to know that no matter what, I love you. Please be good and choose things in your life that will make you and God happy.” What I wanted to say was, “Robbie, don’t be gay! Please don’t go against everything we have taught you about God.” I had never directly acknowledged Robbie’s homosexuality up to this point and did not want to start talking about his sexual attraction the moment I was ready to drive away.
Robbie’s words were tentative, “Mom, I love you, and I would never choose to do anything to purposefully hurt you. I’m going to miss you.” What Robbie wanted to say was, “Mom, I am gay, and it wasn’t my choice. I am scared and need your support.”
I jumped into the big truck holding my life’s accumulations and drove away from my scared son. I did not want to look back.
Denial was my companion on the twelve-hundred-mile trek to Colorado. Homosexuality, Love, Compassion, Confusion, Fear and Doubt argued in the seat next to me while I tried to ignore them all. I truly believed that the further I drove away from Robbie, the closer I would become to God. I could not see a way to love Robbie and his homosexuality and still be faithful to the God I had come to know.
A year earlier, the summer after high school graduation, Robbie broke his spine while jumping from a boulder at Lake Berryessa. He said the impact of hitting the water felt like he landed on cement. For three days, as he lay in bed with his belly distended from his inability to pass urine or stool, Robbie said that his mind was not on his injured body as he bargained with God. He pled “please God, let me be normal. Let me be straight and I will do anything you ask.” After months of physical recovery, he was still gay.
Robbie then thought that if he would consecrate two years of his life to the service of the Lord,
God would help him overcome his same-sex attraction. While serving a mission in Osorno, Chile, Robbie’s testimony led many people to Christ, but when he got home, he was still gay.
“Context Specific Therapy” with Dr. Jeffrey Robinson was momentarily helpful, but after working the workbooks, countless hours in prayer, and trying to concentrate on anything but being homosexual, he was still gay.
How could I reconcile my belief homosexuality is morally wrong with the fact that no matter what Robbie tried he was still gay? The Bible says, “By their fruits, ye shall know them” (Matthew 7:16-20). Robbie is gay, and his fruits are kindness, love, charity, peace, forgiveness, tolerance, and acceptance.
I knew I had to look at my own soul in a mote / beam sort of way (Matthew 7: 1-5). Passing by the vanity mirror one day, I had to do a double take to see who was staring back at me. Mousy hair, depressed eyes, a sullen frown, and overall worn countenance reveale