Friday, November 6, 2015

love as i have loved you

So I know this blog is neverrrr*** controversial and never sparks debates, and has nothing to do with my own personal beliefs or stances, but I thought just this once, I would be a little outspoken.

***I'm always outspoken.

And since this is a dating blog, and the end goal of dating is marriage, I felt this seemed appropriate for today.

Yesterday the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints had many articles published about it regarding it's policy for the membership of children within same sex parent homes. I have seen a substantial amount of backlash and upset from not only the general public, but from dear friends of mine. So I hope to shed a bit of light on the subject. And since I am a teacher, it is time to have a lesson.

Did you know that Muslims cannot be baptized into the church in Egypt at 8 years old?

Did you know children from polygamous homes also cannot be baptized into the church at 8 years old?

Did you know any child from any household in America or any other country, with parents that say they can't be baptized can NOT be baptized at 8 years old?

No one since the history of this church has been able to be baptized without the proper permissions and authorities. In fact, angels had to come out of heaven to give Joseph Smith the proper channel through which to baptize and be baptized.

In order for a boy to receive the priesthood, he must have permission to do so. And all mission calls are divinely appointed through the first presidency. I implore everyone to try to understand what is being said. And please don't be mistaken into thinking that anyone is exempt from being blessed by the church. Anyone can receive a priesthood blessing, as well as blessings rained down from heaven.

So yes, different steps must be taken for a child from a same sex parent home must be taken in order to receive baptism, and other ordinances. But they are not the only ones. Is it possible that we as members are being tested? Yes. Is it possible that those children who will have to wait to officially become part of this church will be held responsible or punished for that? The answer is a resounding no. Might I add, that no where does it say kids are not allowed to come to church meetings or gatherings. Any who feel inclined to sit among our congregations are welcomed with open arms. Don't mistake the churches eternal stance on homosexuality for bigotry. Never in my life have I been taught to hate another person. Regardless of race, gender, sexuality, or weakness, it is an eternal principle to love one another. Often times people confuse the ability to love another without condoning their choices, with being prejudice.

That being said, no one outside of the Lord and those whom He called as apostles knows without a doubt why these policies are instated. However, all the faith in my heart screams that it is on the basis of protection.

How confusing would it be as a young, impressionable child of 13 to have been baptized into a church that teaches that practicing homosexuality is a sin, and learn the principles of what the LDS church preaches to be the true family unit every Sunday, and to come home to a family with two moms or two dads. I work with children all the time. I have worked with them for years in various capacities and ages. I know how confused they are about life. I know how hard they are looking for answers and looking for self confidence, discovery, and assurance. Growing up in a home where we were all infinitely close with one another, I can say without hesitation that one of my biggest draws towards the gospel of Jesus Christ was the promise that by and through it, I would have the opportunity to be with my family forever. As a kid, the church meant a lot to me because my family meant a lot to me.

My parents for as long as I can remember taught our family motto as "no empty chairs." That meant that we wanted to be with each other forever. And the church gives us that promise. I can't say for sure, but I would imagine if I was as close to my family growing up, but learning in church that we could not be together forever would deter me from that religion. Or perhaps it would distance me from my family. The bottom line is, this gospel is not by any means trying to tear homosexual households apart. In fact, I believe the Elders are telling us that this church doesn't want to be the reasons family is torn apart. It happens, unfortunately. But I think this is a preemptive measure to contain that and maintain peace in the home until a child becomes an adult. As an adult, that child can choose if he or she believes in the church and views same sex marriage as a choice their parents, who certainly love them so dearly, made, but not one that will lead to an eternal, exalted family.

The church has never supported gay marriage as a family unit. That is not news. However, I believe there is a chance here to turn to our Father in Heaven to let Him show us His purposes. This is a time to be tested. To trust. To grow your faith. The brethren have never lead us astray. The gospel has always been, and will certainly forever be about love. Let members love you. Love each other. As you are filled with love, let that breed understanding and patience. I stand as a witness with Nephi who wrote "I know that [the Lord] loveth his children; nevertheless I do not know the meaning of all things." I ask for civility on the war that has begun waging on this church I love so dearly. Hatred of this church won't cause a change in policies. Attacks on the brethren or members won't get you what you want, unless you are seeking for sorrow. I hope this post will encourage everyone to try to see this from an eternal perspective and an educated standpoint. I love the gospel so much. I love the prophet and the apostles. I know they lead by the spirit. And I know "whether by mine own voice or the voice of my servants, it is the same."

Pray. Take your concerns and your questions to the Lord. I promise if your heart is open, He Will bring peace and understanding to your mind.  Don't let this derail what testimony you have already. Hold to the ground you have gained and ask in faith.

I love you.