For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit, and putteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord, and becometh as a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doth submit to his father.

- Mosiah 3:19

Wednesday, August 11, 2010


I often wonder what I am overcoming. Last night I spent the night getting close to the edge of viewing pornography. I wanted to very much. I wanted to gratify myself. I didn't.

I am not sure if getting close to the edge is a very good idea. But it is hard to get away from it, though: it's alluring. The physical sensation of going over the edge is amazing. The natural desires of my body are so strong, it wants pornography, it wants to masturbate, it wants to touch another guy. My gosh.

Yet each of these activities is incompatible with the gospel. Yet, these are the desires of my hear, the desires of my mind.

There is also a part of me that wants a relationship with a man. I want him to hold me, to touch me, to kiss me, to eat dinner with me, to just talk with me and be with me. A best friend is not the same. And again, this is not compatible with the gospel.

But the funny thing, while it seems that I am denying myself the natural desires, as I do and try to allow Father into my heart, the heaviness of denying myself is not so burdensome.

I am slowly coming to know God. For so long, I could easily tout scriptures, quotes from GA's, books, and so forth on who God is. I felt that by simply reading about Him I would come to know Him. That by simply listening to what people say about God, I would come to know Him. And I did this, I felt I knew God. I felt I knew Christ. Nothing could be farther from the truth. The reality is I never knew God. I lied to myself. I deceived myself into believing I knew Him, because as returned missionary I was to know God. My pride kept me from my God. My pride kept me from understanding the atonement.

God the Father made Himself manifest to me on my mission, but that was supposed to be the beginning; rather I held onto that as the beginning and the end. Thinking somehow the more I thought about the stronger I would become, or rather by simply not forgetting it, I would not deviate. The reality is, as President Eyring pointed out, the "shelf life for a testimony is very short."

I distanced myself from God, through shutting down the lines of communication through masturbation and pornography, lustful thoughts and desires, and the pride that I had no problems. I slowly moved away from Him, deceiving myself that I was drawing closer. I was not.

I continued to read the scriptures, tried to pray, and continued to go to Church. But something was missing, there was a high degree of inauthenticity in who I was. I was pretending to believe I was someone I was not. I would not allow the church me know the gay me, or the struggling me. One of these identities took over and completely weakened the me as the "son of God."

I did not know who I was. I am struggling. As I come to God, I am coming to know that what I read about Him is indeed true, but I am coming to know of His tender mercies. While some may be tempted to confuse these tender mercies with the mere strength of the mind, it is not. These tender mercies are real, this is the grace of an ever-loving God. He wants me to love; He wants me to find love and express it; He wants me to find a partner; He wants me to know happiness is not simply following the desires of the natural man.

I am a son of God. I am coming to know the Savior. Through His infinite atonement, I am blessed with tender mercies to enable me to overcome the desires to view pornography, the change the desires I have to masturbate, to change the desires I have for living in a relationship with a man. God will not bless me with desires that contradict His laws.

While I do not fully understand why I am gay or its place in the doctrine of the gospel, I am coming to know God. I am coming to know my Savior.

Overcoming is a blessing of Heaven.

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