PROFILE: Linda Seiler, Chi Alpha Campus Pastor
Answering the Call
by Christina Quick
Linda Seiler doesn’t shy away from controversy. In some circles, being a woman in ministry is enough to stir debate. But Seiler’s testimony of personal transformation has drawn criticism from those outside the Church as well.
As a youth, Seiler struggled with homosexual and transgender desires. Though she encountered God in her teenage years and devoted her life to Him, she did not know about His sanctifying power.
In college, Seiler attended religious services while trying to keep her inner turmoil a secret. When Seiler confided in a campus ministry mentor that she felt called to ministry, her mentor rebuked her and showed her passages in Scripture she claimed disqualified women from church leadership. Seiler reluctantly wrote off her desire to minister as gender confusion rather than a genuine call from God.
“I figured I probably didn’t hear God right, so I died to the call,” Seiler says.
During her senior year in college, Seiler became so depressed about her sexual struggles she tried to pry open a high-rise window, intending to jump to her death.
Seiler later got involved in a Chi Alpha Campus Ministries group, where — to her amazement — she met a female preacher. The woman approached Seiler during the service and uttered a prophetic word.
“She asked what my name was, and in a very discreet and loving way, she looked at me and said, ‘The Lord wants you to know that when you were born, He wanted a girl and not a boy. You can do anything a man can do in the kingdom of God.’ That lodged a supernatural seed of faith in my spirit that God sees me. I knew God was going to set me free.”
Seiler remembered that promise for the next nine years as she sought healing while continuing to struggle with sexual sin.
Finally, at the age of 32, Seiler experienced a deep inner healing and radical transformation.
“I was so transformed and healed I hardly recognized myself,” Seiler says. “I felt content in my physical body for the first time. I wasn’t attracted to women anymore.”
Seiler came to realize her call from God was real. She sought ministerial training, eventually earning a master’s degree from Assemblies of God Theological Seminary in Springfield, Mo., where she is also pursuing a doctorate.
Seiler launched Chi Alpha at Purdue University in Lafayette, Ind., in 2007. Last year, she began sharing her testimony of deliverance from homosexuality. When she spoke at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, gay demonstrators staged a protest.
Seiler is helping train faculty, staff, and students at Evangel University to address the issue of homosexuality and minister to the gay community.
“This is becoming a prevalent issue in this generation because of the brokenness in today’s families,” Seiler says. “A lot of students are hurting, and the Church needs to know how to reach them with the love of Christ.”
Seiler doesn’t mind causing a little contention if that’s what it takes to point people to Jesus. She is unapologetically His messenger — and she knows that’s what she was created to be.
— Christina Quick, freelance writer, Springfield, Missouri