What do I think of Rachel Gilson’s book published by the Good Book Company? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.
We all know the story. Girl grows up. Girl decides she’s gay. Girl enjoys spending time with her girlfriends. Girl goes off to Yale and meets Jesus and abandons homosexual desires.
Yeah. Of all places, she found Jesus at Yale and while she at first encountered Christians who told her homosexual behavior was no problem for a Christian, her reading of Scripture told her otherwise. With that, she had to decide what was more important. Following through on her desires for sex and romance that way, or following Jesus.
She chose Jesus.
This book is written for all sorts of people. It is written for those who have same-sex desires and don’t want them and want to follow Jesus instead. This book is written for those who have friends or loved ones, maybe even a spouse, who struggles with same-sex desires. This book is written for those who are just curious about what Rachel’s story is like. This book is written for readers like myself also who think heavily on issues of sexual ethics.
The main theme of the story is unexpected. Rachel keeps having things happen to her that she does not expect to happen. In her study, she comes to a greater discovery of what it means to follow Jesus. What do love and romance and sex really mean?
A lot of this is helpful not just for the Christian with homosexual desires who wishes to honor Jesus and be celibate, but also it would apply for the straight Christian who is single and still wants to honor Jesus despite not finding a spouse. Gilson takes a good and hard look at our modern romance culture and finds it lacking. She encourages us to look at what it really means to marry and to love.
She also says that while some people with same-sex desires, including herself, marry someone of the opposite sex, that doesn’t mean the goal of that marriage is to “cure” homosexual desires. Sometimes, there are people who do overcome such desires and find themselves going the other way. That can happen. It’s not a requirement though and making it a necessity can make focus be where it doesn’t need to be.
Gilson writes with great sympathy for Christians who have this struggle, but assures them life is possible still and there is still joy. It is not for all, but it is possible to marry an opposite-sex partner and still have joy and to love that person and to even have a good sex life together. While her message is great for Christians struggling with homosexual desires, it is also good for those of us who are straight. We can learn something about how marriage and sex is to be seen and done and single straights can learn something about their own desires.
The real great value is to consider how much Jesus is worth. In our culture, sex is often king. It is seen as the true pearl of great price. Gilson’s work reminds us that whatever temptation we face, Jesus is worth it. Jesus is worth forsaking everything. Gilson’s sacrifice is noble and for her, it ended with joy here too. It won’t for everyone, but we have to believe that whatever we sacrifice, that Jesus is worth it.
Gilson’s book is a great read. It’s a relatively short one in comparison to many others and in chapters that are easy to digest and deal with. It’s an amazing story of a woman coming to terms with her own desires and finding joy regardless of not getting what she initially wanted.
(And I affirm the virgin birth)