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

Thursday, September 9, 2010


I have trouble giving up control. I am proud.

I struggled with the doctrines of the church for so long and finally received confirmation that whatever my mortal condition might be, it is not necessarily my eternal condition. Yet, with that perspective came an intellectual understanding that to "endure" I would need to apply the atonement of Jesus Christ. I still understand that this is imperative to the theology of repentance, yet, I am struggling with allowing that reality to permeate my heart.

The addiction has a hold on my life. In the past three months I have slipped five times, which, I suppose, is about once every 2 to three weeks. How do I break this cycle? The proud part of me assumes that because I can build a somewhat coherent doctrinal argument about the atonement and agency, that somehow I know this is a deeply meaningful spiritual way.

Yet the sad reality is that because I am engaged in these unclean practices, the Spirit who teaches changing truth does not attend my insincere efforts. I am in an attitude of trusting myself over God, trusting in my knowledge of God, rather than in Him. It's very hard to put off the natural man, the part of me that so desires to simply not deal with pornography.

Yet, it is precisely this part of my life that is the stumbling block, it is literally damning my spiritual progression.

I would be lying if I said I understood the place homosexuality has in the doctrinal panorama: I don't. But what I do understand are certain truths, and whether I am gay or not is irrelevant. Right now I struggle to put off the natural man who is easily beset by carnal temptations.

I give in, in part, because there is a part of me that still assumes I know more than God. How arrogant, right? But at this moment, I struggle to put off the yoke of pornography addiction.

Repentance is not easy. I am now awaiting word from my Stake President on whether I will need to stand (or sit) before a Disciplinary Council. This scares me, but I suppose I want to be clean, so this is necessary. Yet, I am still struggling with the disconnect between what I know intellectually about the gospel and the plain and simple truths that speak to the soul. I feel empty a lot of the times. But I go on in hopes that the spiritual substance will fill my life with hope.

1 comment:

  1. Enduring: Keep the faith. You can do it. I think that each of us finally comes to the crossroads when we realize that we might be attracted to men for the rest of our mortal lives. And then we choose - just like everyone else - whether to sacrifice everything we have at the altar of repentance, or to sacrifice what we could have at the altar of sin.

    The gospel really is simple. No matter how much you study, the voice of the Lord is still clear - "I understand you; I am here for you; I love you."

    You can do it. The Lord doesn't want you to fail. Even when you can't feel Him near, it isn't because He has left you. It's because you simply need to turn to Him.