You Are Not Alone

Even The Sparrow Finds A Home

Our Story

It all began in our most desperate hour . . .

Our Story 1

Locked away with our lifelong secrets, we turned to Google and typed those four momentous words: Christians struggling with homosexuality.

What we found would turn the page on our stories forever – a Xanga community of men blogging boldly about faith, homosexuality, and masculinity. Their stories spoke life into our starving hearts: we were not alone.

One by one, we joined the fold, welcoming one another as our stories spread to other lonely bedrooms around the world. For five years we forged unlikely friendships with one another — unlikely for our diverse locations, though quite likely for our common struggles and Savior.

When Xanga shut down in 2013, our community suffered a blow. For two years, our story went dark.

Everything changed the summer of 2015 when ten former Xangans gathered for a weekend retreat – most of our first times ever meeting one another.

Our three days in the hills of Tennessee felt like something from a storybook. Tucked away from the rest of the world, we laughed and cried and prayed together, sharing our stories anew, and rediscovering the force of our unlikely-likely brotherhood.

We left those Tennessee hills grateful for our renewed, beautiful brotherhood but burdened all the same. What about everyone else still struggling to reconcile their journeys with faith, homosexuality, and masculinity?

If they turned to Google as we did all those years ago – and certainly they were – what would they find? What wouldn’t they find?

Our Story 2
Wounded Sparrow Seeking Home: Intro to a Queer, Married Pastor

Returning to our respective homes around America, we resolved it our duty to reestablish our online community of old. To open our arms for the lonely, hopeless, and desperately searching. To retell our stories and affirm for a new generation what we once discovered for ourselves all those years ago:

You are not alone.

The fall of 2015, we launched Your Other Brothers (YOB) as a blog, later creating a podcast and a YouTube channel. We started gaining readers, listeners, and viewers, and we began realizing something.

These people were more than mere followers and occasional commenters, and we were doing more than just telling our story; we were building a dynamic community, and they were becoming the story too.

In 2016, we created a secret Facebook group for our Patreon supporters, and soon more community pieces would fall into place: multiple Zoom calls each month, a Discord server, and even supporter meetups and annual retreats.

The spring of 2018, forty-seven men from America, Canada, and the United Kingdom united in the hills of North Carolina for our first YOB retreat: single to married, twenty to sixty-six years old. Our inaugural weekend together bore the echoes of a smaller retreat in the neighboring hills just three years prior.

We met in small groups and large ones; we worshipped God under one roof and struggled to say goodbye.

“Like a long lost family reunion,” someone said of our first-time gathering – indeed, a now familiar refrain several retreats later.

Our Story 4
Our Story 5

And the journey continues! We share our stories for fellow gay or same-sex attracted people of faith, because we are with you as your other brothers. And we share for heterosexual people of faith, because we are your other brothers, too – not outside the Church but here in your midst, yearning to be known and loved like anyone else in the pews beside you.

We never chose our story, but we believe we have been chosen for one another in this story.

So, settle into your seat – and if you feel so bold, grab a pen. Our story’s pages turn from Xanga to today, and we have this unshakable feeling that you, too, have some tales to tell.

Onward.

Our Values

We have seven values that shape the past, present, and future of YOB: from our humble beginnings as a blog to our evolution to a podcast and video channel with a thriving online community. Our first three values center on our relationship with God; our middle two values with self; and our final two values with others. All seven values point to who we are in Christ as we strive to follow and become more like Him, both in our storytelling content and our story-living community.

H

Hope

We faithfully follow the Spirit’s call to endure the brokenness and injustice of this world for the promise of restoration to come. We lament in the “not yet,” ever fixing our eyes on Christ with the strength and light He gives us.

The One Thing that Unites Us

“Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.”

— Psalm 42:11 (ESV)

H

Humility

We humbly walk with the posture that we are not our own, bought at a price, trusting God’s story beyond anything we could pen for ourselves. We faithfully follow our Author’s lead, whatever the culture, living our stories for His glory and not our own.

My Midlife Move 3,000 Miles Away

“Then Jesus told his disciples, ‘If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.'”

— Matthew 16:24 (ESV)

J

Joy

We confidently proclaim our joy in the Lord. We praise God for every good thing He’s given us, in spite of our struggles, and often because of them, including this community with whom we gratefully journey alongside.

My Sexuality is a Gift from God

“You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.”

— Psalm 16:11 (ESV)

V

Vulnerability

We boldly confess our struggles and shortcomings, not for the purpose of glorifying our sin or brokenness, but as faithful stewards of the testimony we’ve been given. We share to point others to God’s past and ongoing work in our lives.

Keeping Healthy Boundaries with Another SSA Guy

“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”

— 2 Corinthians 12:9 (ESV)

I

Integrity

We regularly self-assess, both individually and collectively. We confess our sins, our misrepresentations of God, our miscommunications with others, and our otherwise falling short. When we fall down, we climb again.

The Male Imprints Left On Us

“Let your eyes look directly forward, and your gaze be straight before you. Ponder the path of your feet; then all your ways will be sure. Do not swerve to the right or to the left; turn your foot away from evil.”

— Proverbs 4:25-27 (ESV)

K

Kinship

We openly embrace all who wish to navigate this journey with us. We are a multi-denominational, global community of men and women, gay and straight and everything in between, our many diversities joined by spiritual kinship in Jesus Christ.

Kinship

“So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord.”

— Ephesians 2:19-21 (ESV)

D

Discipleship

While we welcome anyone to the table, we do not settle for shared commiseration. We spur one another toward continuing growth in Jesus, creating disciple-making disciples as He has charged us in the Great Commission.

Do I Like Physical Touch Now?

“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

— Matthew 28:19-20 (ESV)

Our Contributors

Meet the guys who contribute to YOB via our blog and podcasts, and feel free to email any of us! We’d love to hear from you.

Financial professional by day and SSA author by night, I have the privilege of discussing people’s most private affairs: their money and their sexuality (though typically not at the same time). When I’m not discussing people’s darkest secrets, I am a reader, gamer, and enjoyer of the outdoors. For those who care, I am an ISFP and Enneagram Type 6; for those who don’t, suffice it to say I’m easy-going and enjoy both time alone and with friends. Jesus is the author of my story, and I look forward to sharing His work in my life!

Well, hello there! I’m a banker from the Midwest in my late twenties. As exciting as that is, I love to write in my free time. These days, I mostly write for the screen. I’m a storyteller by nature, and I have stories to share with you. Stories that some of you will hopefully be able to relate to or learn from. I am an Enneagram Two and an ENFJ. I love Jesus and I’m a coffee addict. Rarely am I found without a cup of coffee in my hands.

Call me Ben, or call me Beamer. I am in my early thirties, married, pastoring in the Midwest, and Jesus is my reason for living. I’m either an ENFJ or ENFP. My Enneagram is 2 or 6 depending on the day. I am a chameleon – being who I need to be to care for others. Most of my favorite activities center on being with people in any outdoors setting, whether hiking a mountain trail or simply lying in a hammock and drinking a beer.

I will tell you no tall tales, but oh the tales I have to tell! I’m a hippy in my twenties. Newly married to an Elven princess. I’ve spent some life in a van, some life on a stage, some life up north, and a lot of life in someone else’s shoes. My story is of how God broke me down to the quivering nerves of my own vulnerability, then lovingly built me back up, made me a man, taught me to run, and made me run wild. Now I run free into each new wilderness that He leads me into. My life is a story of romance, heartache, betrayal, forgiveness, loneliness, fulfillment, and a whole lot of Jesus. Come, let’s be true together.

I’m a mid-twenties human being born and raised in Manila, Philippines, and I’m currently residing and soul-searching in London. Having grown up in an American-influenced Asian background and now living in a European environment, I try to bridge the gap between cultures, sexes, and exes. I’m an Enneagram type 747-400 and Myers-Briggs type ICBA. My love languages are Quality GIF’s and Words of Memery.

I write under this pseudonym account and do my best to pursue Jesus Christ every day. I fail often, yet I get back up each time. I am married to an incredible woman I call Lisa – she is far better than I deserve. My daughter is one of the greatest joys of my life. And in my spare time, I watch my favorite TV shows and movies, play RPG video games, and hang out with my friends. Yes, I am a nerd and I am proud of it.

I’m a 30-something still trying to find my way in the world. Lover of all things creative, I am a drawer with an intuitive mind while also a deep thinker. I can be a person of extreme opposites: one moment a lone wolf, the next a social butterfly; one moment joyful and optimistic, yet sad and melancholic the next. As I came to terms with my SSA I met fellow SSA Christians and formed deep, intimate bonds. I’ve always longed for brotherhood and, at last, I have found it after years of social isolation. I am glad to be part of this community of bloggers and share my stories and struggles, joys and sorrows, dreams and longings.

I’m a twenty-something computer engineer from the Midwest who feels just as comfortable debugging computer code as he does baking cheesecakes. Singing has always been my favorite extracurricular activity, and I’ve been doing it since I was two years old. I’m passionate about hospitality, and I strive to make my home into a place that absorbs chaos, gives back calm, and provides hope. I love Jesus, and I long for my life to show how wonderful He is.

Born and raised in the Midwest, I find my heart bent toward nature and travel. Things that I love? Traveling, cooking, trying new food, hiking trails, exploring other cultures, the arts, stories – told and read – summer camp, and lists (seriously). Personality tests run the risk of putting people into boxes, so I’d rather let you get to know me before sharing what I “test” as. “Sojourner” is a term I’m becoming more comfortable using to describe myself and my lifestyle. Random facts about me: I played the bassoon for eleven years and can speak French. Let’s journey together.

Jesus told us to deny ourselves, take up our cross, and follow Him. I seek to do that with great joy, because He is better than everything we give up! Also I want to love others in an unselfish way as Jesus taught. I currently do my best to live out that kind of love with 15 other friends on a farm near the Maryland suburbs of Washington, D.C. I love talking about what really matters, and seeing a friend’s heart turn from pain to joy, from fear to peace, and from despair to hope! My writing tends to focus on the topic of friendships with other guys. I have never married and am currently the oldest author on YOB.

I’m a 30-something still trying to find my way in the world. Lover of all things creative, I am a drawer with an intuitive mind while also a deep thinker. I can be a person of extreme opposites: one moment a lone wolf, the next a social butterfly; one moment joyful and optimistic, yet sad and melancholic the next. As I came to terms with my SSA I met fellow SSA Christians and formed deep, intimate bonds. I’ve always longed for brotherhood and, at last, I have found it after years of social isolation. I am glad to be part of this community of bloggers and share my stories and struggles, joys and sorrows, dreams and longings.

Reporting LIVE from the tension between hope and reality, between longing and obedience: inveterate single, complete cheeseball, total nerd, bewildered homeowner, serial relaxer, and long-time Jesus-needer. I live in Raleigh, North Carolina, and I am a software developer by trade. My passion is helping non-straight followers of Jesus discover their place in the body of Christ. All my “comfort music” is about being far from home and/or returning home. I’m an Enneagram 9 if you’re into that sort of thing. I have recently started reading poetry for fun; please send me your recommendations!

I’m a storyteller and story-liver in Asheville, North Carolina – the Jewel of the Blue Ridge. I’m YOB’s cofounder and editor, and I also host our bimonthly podcast. I’ve written a couple books, including a memoir in 2013 where I first came out to the world. Once upon another universe I anonymously blogged about my faith and sexuality under the Xanga username, “twoBeckonings.” I’m an INFJ, an Enneagram 4w5, and my spirit animal is the buffalo. My favorite place in the world is the one where coffee and vulnerability meet.

Greetings from the friendly country of Canada. While writing this bio I am drinking a French press coffee and listening to Arcade Fire on vinyl with my prayer journal, a pile of books, a piano, and a typewriter beside me. Some may say I am a hipster, but I do not really like culturally constructed identities in an attempt to place my personality in a box. I read a lot of theology and philosophy, and I do much research in that area (it’s kind of my job). When I’m feeling particularly adventurous and motivated, I will watch a hockey game and drink a beer with my friends – like every good Canadian.

Frequently Asked Questions

Let’s just say we’ve gotten some questions over the years. Here are the most commonly asked ones!

    Dear Past Self: A Call to Active Hope
    Get In Touch

    Feel free to email our leadership team, and we’ll aim to respond within a few days! Or reach out to any individual contributor with his contact info above.

    Contact Contributors