Queer Faith: The Grace in You and Around You


Throughout the years, it has become increasingly apparent to me that our community has had to fight for every aspect of our lives, including our faith. This struggle often involves seeking acceptance and belonging in spaces where we have been historically marginalised.

In that quest for inclusivity, many of us focus so much on finding grace in others that we overlook the grace within ourselves.

For many LGBTQ+ individuals, being rejected by their faith communities can be a devastating experience. Losing a place where we felt we truly belonged can be arduous, and the pain of rejection can leave us feeling lost and empty. However, in this turmoil lies an opportunity for healing and self-discovery by embracing the grace within oneself.

Society often perpetuates the notion that we need to be saved or validated by external forces, whether it be through religion, relationships, or societal approval. However, true spiritual communion begins with recognising and embracing the inherent grace within ourselves. This is a realisation that we are enough, just as we are, and that our worth is not contingent upon the acceptance or validation of others.

While the fight for inclusivity within religious institutions is important, it is equally crucial to recognise that one’s faith community does not solely define our identity or worth. Even in the face of rejection, individuals can find solace in the knowledge that they possess an intrinsic grace that transcends external validation.

Our Beliefs About Ourselves Influence How We Interact With the World

What I learned in my journey of faith as a gay man is that Grace, in its true essence, is not a remedy for what is broken or needed but rather an acknowledgment of the inherent wholeness and holiness within each individual. It is the understanding that despite the trials and tribulations we may face, we are loved, affirmed, whole, righteous and included in the divine order of the universe.

And when we acknowledge that, we are able to extend grace to others, knowing that we are not bestowing something upon them that they lack but instead aligning ourselves with the grace that they already possess, affirming their inherent worth and dignity. The truth is that Grace does not seek to fix or dismiss the negative aspects of human behavior but rather to illuminate the underlying goodness and potential within us.

It is crucial to recognise that our beliefs about ourselves directly influence how we interact with the world around us. When we operate from a place of self-loathing or inadequacy, we perpetuate cycles of hurt and shame. However, when we embrace the grace within ourselves, we are able to extend that same grace to others, fostering a community full of compassion, empathy, and healing.

True Belonging Goes Beyond External Validations

As I reflect on our community, it’s clear that many of us still carry unresolved anger and pain, perpetuating a cycle of hurt that extends to those around us. The relentless pursuit of acceptance leads us from one relationship and person to the next, and even into different faith institutions. Yet we still feel empty and lost, only to realise that true belonging goes beyond external validations – it resides within ourselves.

Ultimately, finding the grace within ourselves is a journey of self-discovery and empowerment. It is a recognition that we can continue to live with so much peace and joy without seeking any validation and can still be connected to our faith without seeking for someone to validate that we are righteous and in good standing with God. By embracing the grace and beauty within ourselves, we can navigate life’s challenges with resilience, joy, and a sense of purpose.


Ishmael Mokone is a published author, speaker, and versatile writer, blending fiction, poetry, and non-fiction to captivate readers. A former pastor, LGBTQIA advocate, and entrepreneur, they inspire with their diverse narratives, advocate for social change, and empower audiences through their compelling speeches.

Get the Mamba Newsletter

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Send this to a friend