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Trading Temporary Possessions for Eternal Treasures

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Author, Born Again This Way, (The Good Book Company)

Speaker

Leadership team mbr of Theological Development and Culture w/ Cru (formerly called Campus Crusade for Christ)

Married to Andrew Gilson, mother of Enna

Related Topics

Becoming a Believer

Rachel was not raised in the church but grew up around churchgoers and Christians in California. By the time she graduated high school, she was a very convinced atheist and realized she was attracted to other young women.  Rachel settled into her identity as a lesbian.

However, in college she started having an identity crisis when she went to Yale and realized she wasn’t as smart as she thought. While in a lecture discussing “I think therefore I am,” and how it proved the existence of God, she began googling information about God and reading about Jesus. Rachel was interested in the Lord but also conflicted at the same time.

Rachel stole Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis from a friend’s bookshelf – she was too embarrassed to ask to borrow it. While she was reading the book she realized that not only does God exist, but that He’s perfect.  She also realized how much of a sinner she was--not just the sexual sin but lying, cheating, etc. She came to the realization that running towards Jesus was/is the answer, because He stands in the gap between God’s wrath and our sin.

She went to Cru (formerly Campus Crusade for Christ) and started learning about her faith. The Lord was gracious in that she had many female friendships, but she didn’t feel attracted to any of them. Outside of her Christian community, she struggled to obey the “new rules” of purity that she was learning. She needed God’s word, Spirit, and people to give her grace and truth--over and over again.

Living in Faith Today

Rachel married Andrew in August 2007 at 22, and they have one daughter, Enna. Part of the reason she wrote the book was to teach others how to relate properly to the Scriptures on this topic. God has given her the gift of discernment and knowledge and she wants to use that to help and bless the church.

Today she still experiences temptation with same-sex attraction, just like any other sin that tempts, but she doesn’t let it control her life. She enjoys helping the church think critically and logically about this issue. 

Rachel is encouraged by the parable of the man who found a treasure in a field and how he sold everything to buy it. Which, she says, is a great parable for the LGBT community today because of how much they don’t want to give up their possessions for the treasure. But she says that if you see Jesus as the treasure, it’s not even a question – you WILL buy the field. 

A Calling To Help Same-Sex Attracted Disciples 

When Rachel began learning about God, Christianity, and sexuality, she realized there isn’t a lot of books out there for people like her who have experienced and/or live with same-sex attraction. She says that, “God isn’t intimidated by anyone’s background. He is more loving and more powerful than they might think. There isn’t anyone that His arms can’t reach. God doesn’t come to abolish our identity; He comes to give it back to us. He’s the one who made us and understands how we work.” 

She hopes that this book will show how she loves the church and wants same-sex attracted disciples to have practical help to answer their questions about singleness, marriage, identity, desires, practical theology.  She wanted to offer something to help.

“Marriage is not the prize for faithfulness, nor the source. Jesus is the prize. The Spirit is the source.”

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