Go to Navigation Menu
 About Us  Donate 
Home

Life Beyond My Body: Interview with Lei Ming

 


  

Interview with Lei Ming: Life Beyond My Body

Transfaith featured “Who Can Give A Man His Name,” the first chapter of Life Beyond My Body, which explores the process of naming oneself. What role do you think your name plays in understanding and being present in your faith or spirituality?

Our names reflect our nature, so I hope to have a name that can reflect who I am. God is my creator, so he knows exactly what my nature is. Only God knows the most suitable name for me.

How has your spiritual or philosophical perspective evolved over time? What kinds of opportunities and challenges have shaped your perspective?

When I became a Christian I had no idea what other Christians thought about transgender people. My spiritual mentor told me transexualism is a sin and that I was living a lie. That was the hardest moment for me because God is the very reason I live. I didn't know whether I should give up my Christian faith or try to live as a girl. I quit church for a time.

Later, I met a brother in Beijing and confessed that I was transsexual. He accepted me as a brother all the same, and I was baptized. That was the beginning of me learning to accept myself - it's a process. I started to build my relationship with God, a personal relationship, regardless of what others think.

During this process I prayed and asked God who am I, and why is this happening? I wondered why I was assigned female but feel like a man. Gradually, I learned that the body is not as important as our internal state of being. God considers our heart, not our appearance. I read the Bible and, through prayer, I learned my faith is between God and me. I have found peace. This is the way I am, and I think God approves.

In the book you write about becoming Christian through fellowship with other people who shared your faith. How did you change during the process?

When I first became Christian I acted and spoke the way I always had. I did as everyone else did: I hated people, I was jealous, self-righteous, self-centered. I once expected to be loved, now I expect to love. I once liked to receive, now I like to give. I once complained a lot, now I have learned to be grateful. I was once restless, filled with hatred and anger, now I`m able to forgive and find peace and rest.

One thing against the teachings of the Bible is sexual immorality. During one of the hardest times of my life, when I was in Beijing, I had a girlfriend and we slept together. My girlfriend left me and I was very poor and sick. It was at that point I awakened to see what kind of person I was. That is called "being reborn.”

There are so many bible verses in the book! Do you have a favorite passage of the bible that you would like to share?

Philippians 3:20-22 (NIV)

But our citizenship is in heaven, and it is from there that we are expecting a Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ. He will transform the body of our humiliation so that it may be conformed to the body of his glory, by the power that also enables him to make all things subject to himself.

When you imagine God, what do you think of?

The Bible describes God as a father, so when I first imagined God I always thought of my earthly father. My father is remote, indifferent, and uncaring so it was difficult for me to associate God with "father."

God dealt with me, and there has been a lot of healing inside me. As I came to know God from my experience there are testimonies I know are not coincidences. I’ve learned God is loving, kind, and just. I also know that I shouldn't consider God as what I imagine, I should know him through what the teachings of the Bible.

When do you feel the most vibrant and alive?

When I feel down it's usually because of loneliness. I take a walk in the woods or the wilderness - somewhere no one else is. Since nobody's there, I talk to God. I tell him everything I feel: my desires, my longings. I told him many times that I am longing for a wife. I feel better after praying and confessing what is in my heart.

What motivates me is the belief that God has a purpose for my life and I have to fulfill that purpose. I practice my talents: writing and drawing. I envision a life where I can use the talents God gave me to create artwork, write books like Life Beyond My Body, to draw pictures and create paintings to express Christian faith and tell people about Christ. When I finish a work of art and when I play the guitar and sing praises, I feel the most vibrant and alive. I always want to learn to play the piano, so I may also play the piano and sing praises.

  

On the Move

This year at Philadelphia Trans Health Conference Transfaith presents three days of workshops, events, and sessions on liberating spirituality for trans, gender nonconforming and intersex people. Join us September 7th - 9th!

Join Transfaith in welcoming two Youth Writing Fellows into the fold for the summer of 2017!

Planning for a gathering of transgender Muslim leaders at the 2017 Philadelphia Trans Health has begun!

In the News

Transfaith Youth Writing Fellow mud howard interviews writer, poet, and interrogator jayy dodd.

Josefine W. W. Parker's essays on trans ecology, magic, and sainthood "For Wildness to Bloom"

Youth Fellow Hablo Rodriguez-Williams speaks with trans health activist and sex work expert/advocate Phoebe Elizabeth Oya VanCleefe.