A former drag queen became a pastor after a life-changing encounter with Jesus and experienced the love he never thought existed.
Redemption Story Of A Former Drag Queen
In an interview with Allie Beth Stuckey in her “Relatable” podcast, Benjamin Blake Howard shared his redemption story. Apparently, he used to be attracted to the same sex. But now, he has become an associate pastor and is happily married to his wife.
Benjamin was raised in a family that regularly attended church. But experiencing sexual abuse made him question his identity. He began to be attracted to the same sex at an early age. He was six years old when a friend and his older brother sexually abused him. Since then, it reinforced his feelings toward same-sex attraction.
“[The abuse] really solidified everything. It really was the seed that planted it all,” he said. “It really was what made sense of everything I was already feeling.”
Hiding From His Family
Benjamin hid the abuse and his struggle from his family. Then in school, kids bullied and branded him as “gay” because of his voice that was “higher than the other boys.” As he grew up, he slowly embraced the identity of femininity. The young Benjamin never opened up about it to his parents because he heard his father cursing an “American Idol” contestant who shared that he was gay.
Later, in high school, Benjamin joined a local theater production. That’s when he began to reveal his sexuality because he was cast in a female role. The teen loved that he had to dress as a woman for the part. Since then, he began cross-dressing.
“Homosexuality was a lot more open in the theater community,” he recalled. “I would show up to the rehearsals and production and people just gave me so much praise. It was like instant gratification. All of this amazing feeling. Because again, I grew up bullied. I grew up feeling like I wasn’t enough.”
Drugs And Alcohol
Benjamin graduated high school and began using drugs and alcohol. Soon, he had a boyfriend who broke his heart, which paved the way for him to search for love in all the wrong places. The teen wanted to be loved and craved attention from men. And soon, he became a drag queen performer as a teenager, all the while selling drugs.
Until one day, Benjamin’s mother suggested he try ministry school in Hamilton, Alabama. He was reluctant at first, but he still went to school. Then it was only a short time before he encountered Jesus. Benjamin experienced the tangible love of God.
“I actually started feeling happy,” he recounted. “I had struggled with suicidal thoughts.. with anxiety.. with all of this darkness.. with loneliness and not feeling like I was enough. Like I had been through so much at this point, that when I felt this happiness … just come over me, I was like, ‘what is this?'”
That encounter with the Presence of God changed Benjamin’s life forever.
Watch the full podcast in the video below.
Reference | The Christian Post
Header Image: Stuckey, Allie Beth (Screenshot). (2023). Relatable Podcast With Allie Beth Stuckey, February 15, 2023, from: https://youtu.be/Lzn5c2-7uPU