At the age of twelve, I was given a new name. I was called ‘faggot’ by the boys in junior high. I didn’t even have an idea what that meant, so I asked my grandmother. She flew into a rage and washed my mouth out with soap. She normally reserved this ritual for other bad words like the F-bomb, so I knew it must have been bad.
I lived with this name for more than thirty years, even after I was saved. After my salvation, my walk with Christ was cut short. I lost my way for a long time. Most days I would look at myself in the mirror and utter the word ‘faggot’. I viewed myself with utter contempt and hated who I was. I thought of myself as ‘God’s pet faggot’.
Then God came for me, to put me back on the right path. In November 2015, I heard a new name: ‘Child of God’; that this name had been given to me. I had been adopted into His Family and that I was His. I got angry and wept, for what the enemy had stolen from me. He took from me my sense of self-worth, my place as an inheritor of God’s kingdom.
Even now when I look in the mirror, the enemey reminds me of my past and utters the word ‘faggot’. I have to remind him that I have been given a new name, ‘Child of God’, and I don’t have to play by his rules anymore.