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
Friday, August 24, 2012
Sorry it has been a while.
I would be lying if I said a lot has happened. It hasn't. I think I just got a little lazy.
It would be better to say that I was in the depths turmoil wrestling with aspects of my sexuality and in the process of reconciliation. Alas, I haven't. Well not really.
In the last month or half, I've been fairly sober and for that I'm grateful to my higher power.
Last night, I took occasion to watch the "Mormons in America" special on NBC last night. What struck me most about this was the very tender emotions it elicited in me of my relationship to God and not the Church. I've come to realize in the last few months that I desire to be firmly rooted in the Church, but recognize that that the depth those roots can go will be severely limited.
I continue to be open to dating and have been on several dates in the last few weeks. It's strange. I went out with a very nice, talented, intelligent guy who is a Latino secular Jew and as we talked a feeling of "so this is what a date feels like" overcame me. It was an exciting feeling, a feeling of being fulfilled, a feeling of rightness. I began to wonder, yet again, back to the same theme, "are these feelings unrighteous? are these feelings what God wants me to sacrifice?" Those are questions I cannot answer, and I'm coming to appreciate more and more questions that my Bishop is not able to answer either. There is some degree of comfort in that discomfort.
This morning, as I made my way to my office, I reflected on my relationship to God and realized, yet again, that God is real. This is a fact that I cannot deny, no matter how much I try, and further He is as Joseph Smith described. And despite my numerous misgivings with the administrative and management practices of the Church, I tend to see that God continues to endow men and women with inspiration to further an imperfect organization to His ends. In other words, the Church grows despite itself.
Yet, at least for now, I see myself in a margins of this organization. As I am now actively looking for a fulfilling relationship, I recognize that I must distance myself from the doctrine of the Church in ways that make me and other uncomfortable. I talked with the Institute Director about the point one "willfully rebels against God." He did not know, and simply and loving told me, "If, after all you've done to weigh things out and you decide to move away from the doctrine, then I don't think that qualifies as willful rebellion. God understands."
He shed a few tears at the doctrinal struggle and more likely at the eternal significance of the decisions I'm contemplating, but then he extended a hand of friendship and love in perpetuity in knowing the difficulty of the decision. We embraced. I'm grateful for such friends.
I've decided I like the term queer better than gay. I am feeling more and more free as a queer man. The notion of agency in relation to embracing myself as queer is certainly a topic for another post.