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Shane’s story: My journey as a gay waiter-till-marriage

July 13th, 2014 by

Ask Shane questions in the Ask a Successful Waiter forum!

Reconciling my faith and sexuality was not an easy journey. I grew up in a very conservative denomination and I was deeply embedded in the evangelical world. For many years I believed that being gay and Christian were not compatible. However at the age of 32 I joined the Gay Christian Network (GCN), on online community much like this one, as part of my journey to reconciliation.

This resulted in one of the biggest influences on my journey: meeting other gay Christians. I met LGBT people who were deeply committed to Jesus and were doing the best they could to live a life guided by scripture and the Holy Spirit.

Some of these great Christians that I met also believed in waiting until marriage and that was a big encouragement to me. I was certain that if I ever came to a place where I believed God was OK with me dating a man that I would still hold to that belief.

Some of these great Christians that I met also believed in waiting until marriage and that was a big encouragement to me.

After a lot of prayer, wrestling with Scripture, and discussions with people in real life and online, I finally came to a place where I believed God would bless my relationship with a man. I was excited by the prospect of falling deeply in love and sharing my life with someone.

I wrote about this excitement for marriage in the Waiting Until Marriage forum on GCN and it caught the attention of one of the other forum members. Dave sent me a message sharing that he liked what I had written. This led into a conversation that very quickly moved off of the boards to Skype.

It became apparent very quickly that Dave and I had feelings for each other. The crazy thing was that I was living just outside of Toronto and Dave was living just outside of Washington DC. However, we made trips back and forth to see each other and our relationship continued to grow. Because I worked at a university and could take a summer semester off, I moved to DC for 4 months so we could experience normal life together. It was great to live only a 25-minute walk away from each other instead of a 10-hour drive.

On our 1 year anniversary we got engaged, 5 months later we had a very small civil ceremony in Toronto and 3 months after that we had our church wedding in Maryland on the beach of the Chesapeake Bay. It was a wonderful day!

Throughout our dating and engagement we continued to hold to our belief that sex should be reserved for marriage. We even waited until our church wedding because that was the more important wedding to us. We were both virgins when we got married and I must admit that at times I felt nervous. I didn’t know any other gay men who got married as virgins. It felt scary because we were headed into unknown territory. I know there are a lot of people out there who strongly advocate for sexual experience as part of the dating process. However, I understood the Bible to teach that sex is a powerful connector between two people and that the best context for sex was life-long commitment.

I am very glad that we waited because on our wedding night and every time since, sexual intimacy has had a deeper meaning for us.

I am very glad that we waited because on our wedding night and every time since, sexual intimacy has had a deeper meaning for us. It is a physical expression of our commitment to one another. In our wedding vows we said “I do” and every time we have sex was say “I do” all over again. I have truly experienced the beauty of the “one flesh” idea that the Bible talks about.

Putting our life together was challenging due to immigration issues. We even had to spend 6 months apart during out first year of marriage which was really hard. However Dave eventually moved to Canada and I am so thankful for our life together.

I do want to point out three things before I finish off. First, although Dave and I were virgins on our wedding night, I don’t think virginity is all that important. The church has overemphasized the concept of virginity and I don’t believe it is helpful in discussions of WTM. In my opinion, WTM is about recognizing the powerful connection that is formed in sex and not about saving one’s virginity. Just because someone is not a virgin does not disqualify them from living out a WTM belief.

Second, living out a WTM belief is not easy. Because Dave and I were long-distance, our in-person dates lasted a week at a time. We stayed together during these visits. We never slept in the same bed until we got married because that would have been too tempting for me, but we still faced our share of temptation. There were definitely moments when I had to cool down because I realized my desires were racing ahead. I share all this not to point out how amazing we are but to say to others that I know how you feel.

Third, my situation was unique in that 3 weeks after reconciling my faith and sexuality I met Dave and he ended up being the guy I married. I know this is highly unusual. During our dating period I worried about marrying my first boyfriend. Many would say I should date many people first before getting married. However, I thought it crazy to throw away a perfectly good relationship simply because he was my first boyfriend. (I had actually had 3 long-term relationships with women and they taught me a lot even though they were heterosexual relationships.)

It is my hope that my story can be an encouragement to others. When I was dating I didn’t know many gay couples who had gone before me. I hope my story can be a testimony to the goodness of God. Dave and I are definitely not perfect and we have made and will continue to make mistakes. We have lots of areas of growth as individuals and as a couple. However, I have seen the faithfulness of God to us in our relationship.

32 Responses to “Shane’s story: My journey as a gay waiter-till-marriage”

  1. PaulJustPaul says:

    You. guys. are. so. cute.

    Thank you for sharing this, Shane!

  2. Anonimous says:

    Im a christian, and i met my current fiance! About 6 Years ago. Back then she had a Long term bf.
    Ever since then i knew she was not a virgin and IT hurt me bad knowing that she had nothing with me at all.
    (This is a story to help you!!) I’ve been in love with this girl for over 6-7 Years already! I do admit it HURTS Me bad thinking or remind my self of her sexual history. My values to be a virgin has always been a number one priority in my relationship with God. It was 2-3 years after we met that she came back to God (reconsiled her faith) through my perseverance. I honestly always believed I had no chance to make her fall in love with me. Specially when I know how she used to be. But I made a promised to God, that if this girl happened to follow YOU “GOD” the same way I do. That would be my sign that she is ment for me. March 17, 2013 I confessed my feelings for her after 5 LONGS years!!

    She has made me the HAPPIEST guy in this planet! IM proud to say I’m still a virgin, waiting for the day to marry her. Why!? Cuz there is no Greater Love says the word! That the one wich oversees, FORGIVES, believes All!!

    If you love that person and you know that she/he did not saved themselves like you did. And you are doubting to be or not to be with them… Bring it to prayer with God and make a commitment with Him. He will not let you down with your own pain. If that person is the one for you! Then God will put it STRONGLY IN YOUR HEART! Meaning, the love that you have for that person will change any childish idea you may hold. Don’t let the thought of jeolosy and anger completely blind you from the Great qualities and Godly personality that person Holds.

    Look for a partner that will edify you, not shatter you.

    And your virginity will be the Biggest gift you saved up for that person.
    Didn’t God said in the end, ” it’s better to give, than to receive” in MARRIEGE OF COURSE!.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Congratulations!! ^_^ so happy for you both!!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Have you not read? Leviticus 18:22

    Is this really advertising, same sex marraige to our kids?
    As a guy, I should only marry a woman – Genesis 4:1
    I don’t know if this trick worked.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Wow, you waited till your second wedding to have sex. Now that’s self-control lol

  6. nushi says:

    aww!
    Thanks Shane, this is truly inspirational :)so happy for you guys!

  7. Anonymous says:

    My husband and I also believed in waiting till after marriage, and very glad we did. We just celebrated our 57th wonderful marriage. We also believed in dating to get to know one another before commiting for a LIFE TIME TO ONE ANOTHER. We dated for 3 years before marriage. You can have your ups and downs but some how your commitment helps you to stick together and work through them.
    Thank you for having the guts and courage to stick to your belief and speak to the youth of today. God said one man and one women, not multiple mates. They have no idea how they cheat themselves out of the most precious moments in their lives. Your wedding day!

    Thank you.

  8. Shane says:

    There’s a link to my profile at the top of the article if you want to write to me and ask me questions. Thanks for so many encouraging words. It makes me happy when my story can be an encouragement to others.

  9. Anonymous says:

    God loves you, and He always will you are His child. He blesses us even though we don’t deserve it. But regardless of what Toronto or even here in the states may say or legalize. You are still not married. God’s divine design of marriage was and will forever be for a man and woman. Man and woman become one flesh, not man and man, not woman and woman. The Lord has made it clear of His design. Think about there is certain way a woman’s body reacts to man’s naturally and vice versa and kids that’s is how they are made from a man and woman. It saddens me the enemy has so many people thinking such a lifestyle is natural. It’s not. I pray the Lord changes your heart and mind and you find a woman of God, so then God can not only bless you but your marriage also.”He who finds a wife finds what is good and receives favor from the LORD” Proverbs 18:22. It doesn’t say he who finds a partner but a wife, a role only a woman can fill, so I hope you find her one day, I will pray for you.

  10. Grace says:

    Thanks for sharing, Shane. 🙂 Best wishes with your marriage.

    To the Anon above, based on the Biblical texts, the Biblical God accepted polygamy in at least some cases (for example, see 2 Samuel 12:8, which says God gave David Saul’s wives). The idea that he only ever accepted monogamous one man & one woman marriages is false.

    You pointed out that opposite-sex couples can produce kids together. So what? There are lots of kids who want parents to adopt them. And not all couples want kids. Secondly, you said “there is a certain way a woman’s body reacts to a man’s naturally,” but you are speaking of heterosexual couples. For gay couples, there are ways a man’s body reacts to a man’s and a woman’s reacts to a woman’s. Just because it doesn’t produce children doesn’t make it unnatural. Homosexuality occurs in many species of animals in nature… It’s not “unnatural.”

    Finally, many of the laws the Bible listed in relation to sex and marriage are deeply flawed. For example, there was the law that allowed husbands to have their wives stoned to death if their wives could not prove they were virgins at marriage (Deuteronomy 22:13-21). It’s wrong to kill someone for premarital sex. It’s also wrong to kill someone on the assumption that they are guilty simply because they can’t prove innocence — shouldn’t you have to prove guilt, not innocence? And it’s wrong that under that law, wives but not husbands could be put to death for not being virgins at marriage.

    Another Old Testament law (Deuteronomy 22:28-29) said that if a man raped an non-engaged woman, he was to pay a fee to her father and marry her. So, a husband had the option of having his wife put to death for premarital sex, while a rape victim did not have the option to have the rapist put to death, and was expected to marry the rapist.

    Just because something is taught or accepted in the Bible, doesn’t mean we should assume it’s moral. And we need to consider that the writers lived within very different cultures than we do today. Throughout the Bible, when the writers mentioned slavery they treated it as an acceptable practice, and in the New Testament slaves were instructed to submit to their masters.

    Verses such as those below can be applied to an argument against slavery, even though when slavery was directly spoken of in the Bible, it was accepted.

    * Matthew 22:39: Love your neighbor as yourself

    * Matthew 7:12: So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets

    * Galatians 3:28: There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

    Verses like these can also be applied to an argument for accepting gay couples.

  11. Ashley says:

    This is so sweet! God loves all his children, and I wish more gay people would understand that. Bless this man and his epicness!

  12. Noga says:

    I truly appreciate the courage, love and faith that it takes to reveal and share such a personal story on a public forum… and the depth and beauty in the messages you bring. Thank you Shane and Dave. With blessings, ~Noga

  13. Noga says:

    I also want to share my thanks for this website, and al the supportive Peeps here!

  14. Timothy says:

    Grace, nothing to debate. The Bible is clear on homosexuality. We must not use our beliefs to shape the Bible, we must use the Bible to shape our beliefs. Just because God passively allows something doesn’t mean he agrees with it. Yes, He allowed polygamy but it doesn’t mean He was in favor of it.

  15. Timothy says:

    So, a couple of gay-centric articles on this site.

    I noticed that the site’s creator didn’t put any Duggars in the celebrity section? Oh, I forgot, can’t risk offending anyone!! I love how ” acceptance” and “tolerance” cut one way.

    Not trying to be rude. Just food for thought. A concept like this site has a lot of potential but won’t get far.Best of luck to the author of this aeticle and website.

  16. Jegsy Scarr says:

    @Timothy: The reason the Duggars aren’t on here is simply because no one has suggested them for an article yet. We’ve got lots of Christian celebrities listed, including Rebecca St James, Jamie Grace, Nick Vujicic, Colin Klein, Bethany Hamilton, Tim Tebow, and the BarlowGirl sisters.

    If you’re still convinced that the site is biased one way, we have a podcast hosted by two Christians (Protestant and Catholic), an article on 7 Reasons Why Catholics Wait Till Marriage, and an active Religious Topics section in the Forums (check the Forums out, by the way, if you haven’t already). Most of the site moderators are religious, actually, although the site’s creator is not.

    xxx

  17. Timothy says:

    @Jegsy Scarr – I appreciate the response (no sarcasm intended). I will address the Duggars later.

    Tldr- you can’t make everybody happy so please stop trying.

    The point I was trying to make is: “when you try to please everyone, you please no one”. Let’s be honest: a majority of people that abstain are traditional Christians. Sure, there are atheists, agnostics, and liberals but traditional Christians are the majority.

    You can’t make everybody happy; lots of opportunities or traffic will probably be missed because of homosexual promotion on this site. At first I was excited to tell my church about this but decided against it.

    I mean no disrespect to the author. I do believe he is a Christian and I care for him as much as my other Christian brothers/sisters. I will pray for him though.

    Peace and Love,
    Timothy

  18. Timothy says:

    The above post was in regards to “bias”. Now, I will address the Duggars specifically.

    The whole “suggestion” thing… to me it seems like a no-brainer

    Hope you don’t mind, but I looked at your profile and noticed you’re from Scotland. I’m unsure if you know this, but the Duggars are literally the most famous family in the U.S ( no exaggeration). They are more popular than the Obamas. They eclipse the popularity of the celebs you mentioned, combined (no exaggeration).

    Season 9 just got started and records are already being broken.I’m sure when the wedding shows even more records will be broken.

    You can barely browse the internet for 5 minutes without seeing an article about them. Every media outlet is jumping on them. Heck, even Cosmopolitan ran a piece on them, and it was somewhat positive.

    But, unlike the celebs you mentioned, the Duggars campaign for traditional beliefs, and they do so very often. It seems very odd to me that this site not running a piece on them is just a coincidence.

    2 things:

    1.)I’m not asking you to agree with me, but can you at least understand where I’m coming from? Surely someone on staff, and/or the creator knows of the Duggars already.

    2.) Can I expect Duggar articles in the future?

    Peace and Love,
    Timothy

  19. Josh the Dude says:

    I am sorry, but I believe homosexuality is a sin, but people who commit it should be treated equal to anyone else, I have no right to judge someone else while I still sin myself, I think Jesus explained that all when the woman who was caught in the act of adultery was brought to him to be stoned..if he obeyed the law in the old testament he would of killed her, but now through Jesus we no longer have to die for our sins but to turn from them.
    But as Jesus said, let him without sin cast the first stone..I know I am not without sin, so I am not going to go around attacking gay people.

  20. Timothy says:

    Josh the Dude:

    Just because I disagree with someone or something, doesn’t mean I’m “attacking” anyone. I just think that a website like this has tremendous potential that won’t be reached because it’s trying to make everyone happy. I don’t see another site that does what this site does. This site can be huge.. so lost potential in my opinion.

    Gay-centric articles but no articles about some beautiful BIBLE stories. I also noticed that Jegsy-Scarr never answered me about an article featuring the Duggar girls. So, I have to stand by my opinion. Religious is “good”. But “too” religious is bad. Sometimes, you can’t make everyone happy. Sometimes, you can’t be wishy-washy.

    Peace and love,
    Timothy

  21. Neldish says:

    I always thought this was a Christian website, but now I see it’s actually just a website about “Waiting Until Marriage” whether gay, straight, muslim, or lesbian and it has nothing to do with religion… got it. Didn’t know that. So they support waiting until marriage of any kind of relationship. Wow.

  22. Gsa says:

    Do you still think that the site should run articles about the Duggars?

  23. Bryan says:

    Shane I’m glad you are happy. However, it does say in the Word of God that people who practice homosexuality will not enter the Kingdom of God (1 Timothy 1:8-11, Leviticus 18:22). I’m the last person in my opinion who can cast judgments about these things. For a while now I’ve struggled with my own sin. I’m believing in God’s deliverance of it; again I cannot judge anyone, but I can see that you, Shane, are committed to Jesus and as a loving brother in Christ, I just want to give you a reminder (because I’m sure you’ve already heard this from many people) that God does not bless a gay marriage or gay relationship of any kind. While I’m not trying to sound hateful, because I truly only say all of this out of love, the Bible says in several areas that those who practice homosexuality cannon spend an eternity with God in heaven.

  24. Shane says:

    Thanks for expressing your comments very graciously, Bryan. Your point of view represents one understanding of Scripture. However, there are now many Christians who would disagree with your interpretation.

    There have been many, many theological debates throughout the ages. Many of these debates don’t make sense to us today. Christians have always disagreed on some things, all the while holding onto Scripture and doing their best to understand it. The same is true when it comes to discussions of sexuality.

    I’m not going to engage in debate because I doubt it will go anywhere useful. I will simply comment that I believe that God does love LGBTQ+ people and that it is possible for them to be in relationship with him without having to deny their orientation.

  25. Mark says:

    I don’t like this story. This is not how it should be. It’s all mixed.

  26. Elliot says:

    I like the concept of this site, because I am waiting till marriage but seeing how it not actually a Christian site I will not be using it often. A child always deserves a mother and a father. Disappointed.

  27. joe says:

    i really believe that marriage should be between a man and a woman Jesus is coming soon we need to get our self right with him

  28. JenA says:

    Good lord! Reading these comments I really don’t know how most of you consider yourself Christians. I am happily agnostic.

  29. Anonymous says:

    It’s such a shame that people who pervert the Word of God still call themselves “Christians”!!! What God obviously calls a disgust in the Bible (same sex relationships), is considered “just another orientation” by the so called “children of God”. Wow. Read Romans chapter 1,the wrath of God will soon be manifested and it will be too late for many!
    Repent and turn to God, people! It’s really the end of the world. Thank God I don’t live in America or Canada!
    This site was recommended on a Christian app and I thought it was Christian, lol. Very disappointing, and as Timothy said, it could have been great if different!

  30. A user says:

    In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error. Romans 1:27

    At least, stop calling yourself a Christian…

  31. Abdur Rehman Khan says:

    How did you know you are a gay?

  32. Vick Macky says:

    Can someone please help? I have been emailing and leaving messages and nobody is responding. people are not getting the confirmation emails! take a look at when the last new member signed up.

    I would love to join this site but it looks like you’re experiencing some major tech issues.

    Someone please email me back at vick.macky@mail.com

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