Voices of Hope – March 20th 2019

“Created in God’s Image” (Part 3) – “Wonderfully Made” by Sara Gillingham

Sara Gillingham

I was born with variations in sex characteristics, otherwise known as intersex traits. Alongside 1.7% of the population I was born with a variation in genitals, chromosomes or gonads that does not fit into the typical understanding of what it is to be male or female. Whilst for much of my life I did not fully understand the truth of my embodiment which was hidden from me through cosmetic surgeries I received as a child, I did know my body was somehow different and not to be spoken about.

For many years I cried out to God for strength and comfort, as I struggled with loneliness, depression and anxiety that resulted less from the non-consensual surgeries, but from the silence and resulting stigma. It is the secrecy that was so depilating, as I assumed my body was something to be ashamed of and not something to be celebrated.

This Psalm is my prayer that has taken me on a journey from shame and unknowing, to one of self-acceptance and understanding. Even when I did not know myself how my body was knitted together, God did. I was never a mystery to God, who caught me when I fell. I rejoice that I am made me in God’s own image.

Everyone one of us, regardless of sex, gender or sexuality, is truly wonderfully made.

The love of God strengthens us all, empowering us to release ourselves from the bondage of secrecy and stigma. We can all stand tall and celebrate our bodies, gender, sexuality and faith, with both pride and confidence.

Thanks be to God.

A Prayer

Omnipresent God, open our eyes to the beauty of all Your creation. We thank you for knitting us together, fearfully and wonderfully made. When we stumble strengthen our Faith, so we can feel Your presence and the lifting of our burdens.

Amen

Tomorrow – Philip Baldwin, , “Healing & Hope”, Luke 7: 6-7

 

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