While Exodus International is gone, there is still Exodus Global Alliance out of Ajax, Ontario. Here is a lovely Christmas letter they sent out to their followers. Since the verbiage is rather convoluted, I’ll be your interpreter, with my comments italicized:
Dear Ministry Friends and Partners,We often talk about giving and gifts at Christmas. But we don’t often talk about giving broken gifts. Who wants to receive a broken gift? A broken watch, a broken dish or a broken toy? We don’t want to give broken gifts. Yet broken gifts are what God seeks at Christmas.
(God would probably prefer a Macy’s gift card…The gay child is like a busted present wrapped nicely under the tree, but still has little value. Even a child knows a busted toy is useless until it is fixed. )
Christmas is about promises fulfilled. And it is also about promises not yet fulfilled.
(This is a slick admission of guilt. Exodus Global Alliance is the group that made the initial promise of heterosexuality. The forlorn gay client is still guzzling eggnog wondering why this group did not fulfill its promises — although they always cashed the checks.)
One promise from God is that He would send a healer – Jeremiah 33:6-11. This promise was given along with promises that Israel would be taken away in captivity. Jeremiah was confused when God gave him these promises, so much so that he asked God to help him understand.
(In spite of their lofty rhetoric, Exodus Global Alliance can’t help you. They are waiting on a special healer to magically arrive. Maybe he’ll be at the Christmas Party in a Santa suit?)
For many people who experience same-sex attractions or have a family member involved in homosexuality, Christmas can seem as confusing or complex as God’s message to Jeremiah. So, I hope a reflection about broken gifts will be an encouragement to you.
(Homosexuality is such a difficult concept that one might be forgiven for confusing Christmas with Groundhog Day. There is nothing on this earth more complicated than the idea of dudes liking dudes and gals liking gals. Sure, homosexuality has been around since oxygen, but that doesn’t make it any easier to figure out. It is particularly difficult to find solace when our prejudices force us to ignore forty years of modern research and contemporary knowledge on the topic)
Christmas is the celebration of Jesus’ birth.
(Isn’t that the guy who never mentioned homosexuality? It strikes me as odd that “ex-gay” ministries keep quoting him.)
Jesus was born for a purpose; born to die for our sins, making Christmas and Easter irrevocably linked. Jesus was born to bring redemption and healing to broken people. When we became Christ followers, Scripture says that we received both of these but we have not yet experienced them fully. Romans 3:23-24 says Jesus completely justified us. Ephesians 1:7 says we have redemption; it is completed. But redemption includes healing, peace, security, well being, and more. We do not yet have all of these. Instead we have brokenness; brokenness in our mind, body and spirit. We have brokenness in our relationships; family, friend & work relationships. There may be much brokenness in a family that is impacted by homosexuality. And people who experience same-sex attractions may consider their attractions to be unwanted, broken feelings.
(Such families are not impacted by homosexuality. Instead, they are negatively impacted by fundamentalists bastardizing Christianity and selectively cherry picking Bible passages that support their bigotry.)
What are we to do with our brokenness?
(Well, you could always come out of the closet and leave the fundamentalist lifestyle behind. Presto — you’ll feel whole, complete, and alive again. Plus, you’ll have fun and a real life!)
That is where God’s promise comes. Christmas is also the promise of healing and redemption.
(I’m willing to place bets that no one on this group’s email list will be healed or redeemed by New Year’s Eve. Or ever. If you are an Exodus Global Alliance client reading this, make a New Year’s resolution: Stop throwing your life down the toilet to please charlatans who will never accept you for who you truly are. As they made it clear in their Christmas message, you are a broken, dirty dish cutting the hands of family members who innocently reach into the sink of purity. Like a filthy, damaged dish, they will cruelly discard you the moment you realize that they have no idea how to glue you back together. (That’s because you are already whole the way you are. You can’t fix what isn’t broken and can’t heal what isn’t sick.)
Ephesians 1:14 says the Holy Spirit is God’s deposit to us until we fully experience all the healing and redemption provided through Jesus’ death & resurrection. The Holy Spirit is our guarantee that these will fully come. Ephesians 4:30 says we are to trust in God that we’ve been sealed for the future day when these will be fully ours. Romans 8:23 says we wait for the day when our bodies will be made new and holy.
(This entire paragraph is a cunning disclaimer. They are saying that when your promised healing does not come (and it won’t), it is not the fault of Exodus Global Alliance. It is the fault of Jesus Christ, who must hold a serious grudge against you — because his healing is otherwise guaranteed. Christ is your deposit — although that doesn’t mean Exodus Global Alliance will give you your actual deposit back when the “cure” doesn’t come.)
God invites us to give our brokenness to Him. As we bring our brokenness to God; our discouragement, our failure, our loss…we look forward by faith to God completing our healing and redemption.
(The “ex-gay” industry gets apoplectic when I say they try to “pray away the gay.” Read this line closely: “We look forward by faith to God completing our healing and redemption.” It sounds an awful lot like…praying away the gay.”)
Christmas is the middle of God’s plan. Jesus’ birth, death & resurrection are the middle of God’s plan. We are invited at Christmas to give God our brokenness so that He can give to us healing and redemption. God considers them gifts. And that is why broken gifts are what God seeks at Christmas.
(In the “ex-gay” industry, everything ends up being about going straight. It’s a pathological obsession. Now, they have gone so far as to have hijacked Christmas.)
Your hopes for your son or daughter might be broken gifts. Your requests to God to remove same-sex attractions from your life may be a broken gift. Your attempts to embrace a new identity in Christ in place of one built on feelings or temptations may be a broken gift. Your attempt to live a life of purity may be a broken gift.
(Every hope and dream you have placed in Exodus Global Alliance will eventually disintegrate and turn to dust. But, relax, it’s God’s Plan.)
Accept God’s invitation. Give Him your broken gifts. May God speak to you this Christmas about His trustworthy ability to take your broken gifts and minister redemption and healing upon them.
(If you really intend to give God “broken gifts” the least you could do is provide the receipts.)
Thank you for being friends and ministry partners. Working together, God uses us to transform the lives of people with broken gifts. So let’s celebrate together the birth of Jesus Christ and continue to journey together as we minister Jesus’ grace and truth.
Change is Possible – because Jesus is our Redeemer, Saviour, Sanctifier and coming King.
Director, Exodus Global Alliance>
(Merry Christmas you broken, shattered, fucked up, shell of an actual human being. God loves you!)