A Christian Lesbian Journey: A Continuation of Long Road to Love Paperback – February 12, 2007
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- Publisher : BookSurge Publishing (February 12, 2007)
- Language: : English
- Paperback : 160 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1419659871
- ISBN-13 : 978-1419659874
- Item Weight : 7.8 ounces
- Dimensions : 6 x 0.37 x 9 inches
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from the United States
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In this book, the author tells of her acceptance of her sexual orientation as a gift from God, Whom she loves with all her heart. She does not flaunt it, nor be promiscuous with it, but is deeply committed to her partner and to her Lord. She explores what the Bible really teaches.
I have been a "Pharisee," and this book really caused me to re-think my judgmental stance toward people who are different from me...and who are just as loved by God as I am.
Top reviews from other countries
PART 1: GIRL MEETS GIRL - Darlene Bogle meets 'Des ' in role of counselor for the now defunct Exodus International Organization, who is trying to help the latter through what is a dying marriage - the inevitable happens, the two fall in love and move in together
PART 2: GIRL LOSES GIRL - after a gloriously happy time together girl loses girl ('Des') through the ravages of cancer which is described in great detail, it's this part which forms the main body of the book
PART 3 - GIRL MEETS ANOTHER GIRL - following a period of excruciating grief for the loss of Des, Darlene then establishes a new life with 'Becky' who'd been a mutual friend of Des and Darlene
I shall now review the content of each part in turn.
PART 1 stated the book on a very bad note. It wasn't so much the fact that Darlene hitched up with Des that bothered me, rather it was the CONTEXT in which that event occurred. It was a context in which one had a counselor who was in a position of trust elope with a needy, married woman who'd come for help. The behavior Darlene displayed would have got her drummed out of any caring profession. Her gushing apologia for this act remind me of the excuses a male music master made when he'd eloped with a fifteen year old, female pupil to France. Arguably, Darlene's conduct was questionable if not predatory and any reputable organization would have fired her on the grounds of professional misconduct. (Darlene it seems, jumped before she was pushed.) As a married man I'm heartily glad that my wife didn't come to Darlene for counseling. it was a good job that there was 8,000 miles between them! Underneath a smokescreen of gushing sentimentality Darlene Bogle emerges as a very strong minded lady who knew what she wanted and wasn't too bothered as to how she got it. She and Des were very fortunate that the latter's husband was not the kind to take out a twelve bore shot gun. Lacking was any acknowledgement that it's a risky thing to mess around with other people's marriages -especially if one is a counselor. i certainly wouldn't have taken things as casually as Des' husband (who did seem to be glad to be rid of her).
In mitigation, it must be stated that Darlene operated in a shambolic organizational context in which Exodus International appears to have become a covert dating agency for frustrated Christian homosexuals and lesbians. It's core error was to try and use man-made psychological techniques to do something which only the Holy Spirit can do - effect a full scale change of sexual orientation. It's approach was more humanistic then authentically Christian. There was a failure to recognize that when it comes to such matters it really is a case of "not by might, nor by power but by my Spirit says the Lord," (Zechariah 4:6). This was a point that emerged in a protracted dialogue with my two lesbian friends. It was Exodus' lack of realism in this regard that sealed it's doom. Represented was a classic case of man trying to do God's work for Him. The passing of Exodus needn't be mourned.
In PART 2, this book partly redeems itself and it was here that it earned it's two stars. The care shown to Des during all the ghastly stages of her terminal cancer was truly remarkable. It was clear that between Darlene and Des more than infatuation was involved. These two women were deeply and passionately in love with each other. To deny that would be churlish; to reduce it to co-dependency would be ridiculous, as this charge could be laid against any hetero-sexual marriage including my own! The description of the care shown to Des by Darlene and other parties was by far the most edifying part of the book. It was indeed very moving.
Sadly, in PART 3 it drops back again.Stunned by the loss of Des, Darlene becomes receptive to what maybe termed spiritualistic phenomena. Some of what was experienced can be attributed to the shock of bereavement; unfortunately, some of the it could not. On p.118-9 there's only what can be described as the activity of poltergeist; but instead of such phenomena being rejected, it's accepted both by Darlene and her friends as being by the now deceased Des. Absent from Darlene's circle was even the most rudimentary spiritual discernment. It was here that Darlene lost any credibility as a believer. As someone who was almost strangled by a poltergeist I can tell the difference between that kind of Spirit and the Holy Spirit. Indeed, it was something the Lord sorted out within a year of my sudden conversion in October 1975. Darlene appears to have missed the a point that's obvious to most African Christians which is; that one reason Christ died for us was to free us from the tyranny of evil spirits. Personally, I found this part of the book to be rather defiling. I had to pray for cleansing after reading it.
At the end of book Darlene offers an easy affirmation gospel which in effect says 'God loves and accepts you as you are.' This false gospel misses the whole point of the Christian message that stresses that until we are justified through faith in Jesus Christ we are guilty sinners under divine wrath heading for an eternity Hell. Not to accept this point is to deny the greatness of Christ's salvation. The inconvenient fact that Christ was the biggest hellfire and damnation preacher in Scripture is something that is quietly ignored by Darlene (as it is by most of the Church). In this world, one only has to visit Auschwitz death camp (as I did in October 2011) to appreciate the depths of human alienation from the divine. In His holiness God can only judge and reject us as we are unless our sins are covered by the atoning blood of Jesus Christ. This is something that applies to people of any sexual orientation. Any failure to accept these points is to offer the kind of 'cheap grace' criticized by the German Theologian and martyr Dietrich Bonhoeffer. Sadly, all Darlene could offer was cheap grace but no real gospel. There was also a great deal of self-justification. It was these facts that bothered me far more then all her torrid lesbian passions. If there was one thing I'd say to her it would be 'you need to be born again.' (John 3:7). In the end, Darlene Bogle convinced me that she had plenty of religion (mixed with a lot of psycho-babble) but having a religion is not the same thing as having Jesus Christ. It was an inability to make this distinction which represents the central tragedy of this book.