Ministering Through Brokenness
- May 19, 2013
Christopher Yuan '05 teaches at Moody Bible Institute while speaking across the globe, challenging Christians to think and respond in thoughtful and biblical ways to the complex, modern day issues related to sexuality.
Christopher's long and difficult journey started in the suburbs of Chicago. His dad, Leon, was a dentist and his mother, Angela, stayed at home with their children. Christopher's parents raised both of their sons to work hard and honor family.
They were thrilled when Christopher decided to follow in his father's footsteps and become a dentist; however, their happiness was quickly followed by profound disappointment when Christopher told them he was gay. His mother, in particular, was devastated.
Christopher's testimony, told in his book Out of a Far Country: A Gay Son's Journey to God, A Broken Mother's Search for Hope, combines his story with his mother's spiritual journey. After Christopher "came out" to his parents, he began living an increasingly promiscuous life. He also began experimenting with and selling illegal drugs. Meanwhile, his mother began searching for God.
After Angela became a Christian, she began to fervently pray for her son, even as she watched his life spiral out of control. Christopher was expelled from dental school and imprisoned for dealing drugs. Then he found out he was HIV positive.
While studying the Bible, Christopher slowly realized he had put his identity in the wrong thing, his sexuality. But, God called him to put his main identity in Jesus Christ alone. This new identity in Christ compelled him to live in obedience to God whether regardless of what his sexual desires were. This obedience led to a radically changed life.
Christopher applied to Moody Bible Institute in March 2001. He discovered a passion for teaching God's Word while in prison and wanted a fresh start. "God began to open doors for me to share my story of God's grace, both in my life and in the lives of my parents," says Christopher.
Christopher's emphasis in biblical languages at Moody proved valuable.
"I believe Moody has one of the best undergraduate, biblical language programs in the nation," he says. "I had no idea how knowledge of biblical languages would impact my ministry. Today, discussions on the morality of homosexuality always come back to how one interprets the passages in the Bible."
"God, in his infinite wisdom, combined my personal experience of coming out of homosexuality along with my knowledge of biblical languages and exegesis."
Following his education and ministry training at Moody, he received a master's in biblical exegesis from Wheaton College Graduate School. He has also been pursuing a doctorate at Bethel Seminary in St. Paul, Minnesota, in the area of sexuality and celibacy. Christopher's mom travels with him and participates in many of his speaking engagements across the globe at churches, conferences, youth conventions and colleges.