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GONZALEZ NEWSLETTER

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What messages did you receive about sexuality growing up and what was the main source of those messages?

As we walk with students, athletes, and ministry leaders in their spiritual formation, at some point, the topic of sexuality comes up. And, more often than not, the question above leads to deep conversations of pain, confusion, and disappointment. As a result, responses typically fall into one of two narratives; “The Fast-Food Diet” or “The Starvation Diet.”


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The Fast-Food Diet, in terms of sexuality, is the common narrative of Western Culture and is growing with each passing generation (as depicted in orange above). It teaches to let your sexuality lead you. Get as much of it as you want, whenever you want, with whoever you want, so long as you’re doing it safely, not “hurting” anyone, and not doing something illegal. In Britt’s life, this looked like turning to guys for fulfillment by offering her body because that’s the hook-up culture of high school and college campuses today.

The Starvation Diet is the primary narrative of the Christian culture in the United States which is giving way with every passing generation (as depicted in blue above). It teaches to shut down your sexuality as if it doesn’t exist until you’re married, at which point your spouse will satisfy all of your desires and you will have no sexual problems. This was the mantra that Anthony learned growing up and created a lot of shame and guilt in singleness and dating. While there are variations in between, generally speaking, these are the two main narratives in our culture. 


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Did you know that one of the top reasons new applicants are turned down from coming on staff with Cru/Athletes in Action is sexuality? Meaning, these applicants have current sexual binds that hinder their walk with God and ability to effectively minister to others. This is what flagged both Brittany and Anthony’s applications when each pursued coming on staff.

This begs the question, what’s missing in our evangelism and discipleship process that consistently sends out young people who are called to ministry and have yet to face the reality of sexual brokenness in their lives? To help answer this question, Anthony recently spent a weekend in September at the headquarters of Athletes in Action with other ministry leaders to tackle this issue and how it affects men.

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During this retreat, we discussed the Fast-Food and Starvation Diets and contrasted them with a third narrative. What would it look like to view our sexuality through the lens of the Feast?

In one passage, Paul summarizes the beauty of sexuality with both its original design (the beginning) as well as it’s intended fulfillment (the end) in Ephesians 5:31-32. He says, “‘Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and hold fast to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.’ This mystery is profound, and I am saying that it refers to Christ and the church.” 

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The “Wedding Feast” (Rev. 19:6-9), which is the culmination of our sexuality, provides context for understanding our sexuality.  There will be no “marriages” in heaven because the earthly marriage is a foreshadowing of the heavenly marriage.  The goal for the Christian life is not sexual satisfaction or even marriage (though they are both very good), it is intimacy with God and one another. Therefore, how do we live in light of this reality?

This means, we neither let our sexual desires drive us (Fast-Food Diet) nor do we seek to extinguish them (Starvation Diet), but we learn from them as God-given indicators of our need for real physical, emotional, and spiritual intimacy with God and others. I’m not driven by my desires, nor am I seeking the death of my desires. I’m seeking to fulfill the depth of my desires. Then, whether single or married, we seek to meet those legitimate needs for intimacy in legitimate ways.

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Pray for Brittany and I as we continue to personally seek the Lord for fulfillment in our lives, marriage, and family. Pray that we can offer our personal stories of journeying from sexual brokenness towards wholeness through gospel transformation in Christ and in authentic community both locally in Miami with the students and leaders we serve as well as across the global presence of Athletes in Action and Cru.

What are you hungry for?

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Prayer Requests

  • Pray that we would personally walk in the Spirit as we serve those who are recovering from sexual brokenness.
  • 28 athletes have responded to our spiritual resources on campus, pray that we would be faithful to follow up with each student and plug them into the right group for growth in their relationship with God.
  • The Super Bowl is coming to Miami which means there are several athletic opportunities to share Christ, pray for us as we already make preparations and partner with other ministries.
  • Pray for student leaders as they begin training on how to share the gospel with their teammates and multiply their faith into the lives of others.

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Updates

  • Micah had his first T-ball game and won!
  • Kyla just tried out gymnastics for the first time and loved it!
  • Daniel is starting to interact socially and smile!
  • We will be flying for the first time as a party-of-five to New York for a family wedding this weekend.

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Our hearts are filled with deep joy and gratitude for your ongoing spiritual and financial support. We cannot touch the lives of students, athletes, and leaders without you! Thank you.

With Love,
Anthony, Brittany, Micah, Kyla & Daniel
The Gonzalez Family

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