14 October 2008

W A R 2


That's how I really feel. I just don't know what to do anymore and it's making me insane.

I've spent TWO WHOLE DAYS now just completely vegging in front of my computer and watching cartoons on youtube to try and IGNORE this damn conflict. I'm so sick and tired of conflict.


Whatever happened to Chrisitan values, to love, to everything we need to keep it together in this darkening world?

"I have much to say, but don't really know how to vocalize the pit and ache in my knotted stomach. I'm doing so good. My commitment to God is stronger than it has been in so long. That's not the problem....Once again lines are being drawn. People are reaching for weapons."

These are NOT new words. I've said them before. Almost one year ago.

Except when I'd said them I had made a decision. Picked a side. And that side was gospel. Gospel truth and light instead of the desire and want of my heart. The war then was among my friends, but now it's widened. It's spread. It's gotten bigger.

It's getting harder.

The war is everywhere now. All around me. Family members voting yes. Friends calling people to get their yes vote. Some stand true. Some follow me wherever I go, and hate that I'm not sure anymore. I hate it too, trust me!

I chose a side. I stuck to it. But how? How do you continue to hold onto a church that refuses to hold onto YOU? How do you continue to follow and believe in something that seems hell-bent on crushing you?

"No" has to be the answer! There's no other way! I'm ready to donate. I'm ready to go! I'm ready to protect families that I acknowledge as valid and maintain equality for everyone!


And then I see bloggers like View from the Crow's Nest and Bravone (who commented on Crow's blog) standing for YES.

And it all comes crashing down on me again. Where I stood. Yes. In harmony. With my uncles, and my family... but against my friends and other families.


OTR chatted me today from Israel. We got in a fight over Prop 8 last night. I told her I was back to no and she couldn't believe it, since I had finally (through the result of our tumultuous night and the weeks following) gotten her to agree to yes... but now... I decided maybe I was wrong.

She just barely learned to accept herself and has started growing by leaps and bounds in the gospel (and she just read The Giver because I asked her to, so that's the reference to the red sled below, and she has jewish heritage so that's why she doesn't write the word God); she responded with an email after I said I didn't want to talk about prop 8 anymore. Here's a piece of it:

"I hate that I don't understand all of his plan- I'm frustrated by pain even though I supposedly understand the purpose of pain and trials. I was content to vote no on prop 8 (even though I knew that might not be the choice He wanted) until Hidden flipped to voting yes, and then about a week later I too was willing and I decided to vote yes. Now he is back to 'no' because the Church's campaign is wrong. I can't just change my opinion every time he tells me to. I feel like part of me has ALWAYS wanted to vote no- even though I came around to voting yes after he did. I wish I could better feel and trust the spirit so that I know what He wants.

"Hidden said that it's not about attraction- it's about being like G-d and being His children. And I guess that is it- that is the bottom line. We are as G-d, we are His children and He loves each one of us. We are here to do HIS work. That is what Christ came for and that is the mission of all the prophets- to bring about His work.

"It's not about our physical bodies and trials, they suck and are stupid and crappy, but they are all covered by Christ. He suffered all that we have ever and will ever suffer because of our natural bodies. In that we are more blessed than anything- holy cow the Gospel is amazing! We have the blessing of coming here and having bodies, and we have all the joy and wonder associated with that, and all the pain and sin and anguish is taken away in Christ. In the end that leaves us with the good parts of having been here, and having been here enables us to become gods. He wants us all to have what He has, but He takes the everlasting pain and damnation we have to suffer to become like Him. Our temporary pain enables us to help others- to cling together in love and unity. He gives us experience, memory, help, and strength so that at the end we will know what to do with the red sled that He has left for us. In the end our mortal (normal, regular, not evil, not perfect) selves will be shed and all will be made up- every loss compensated. Whatever that means about sexuality, all our mortal anguish will be compensated for and in our spiritual bodies we won't have that anguish. We have to come and deal with our physical bodies to go home and we have Gospel standards regarding these bodies. These rules and covenants help us to feel G-d here and help us to return to Him with less pain, anguish, and separation from Him after death. When our natural selves contradict with the Gospel standards, that is the pain Christ suffered for us and that is the anguish that will cease to exist when we shed our mortal bodies for immortal and spiritual ones.

"'Thine adversity and thine afflictions shall be but a small moment…And if thou shouldst be cast into the pit, or into the hands of murderers, and the sentence of death passed upon thee; if thou be cast into the deep; if the billowing surge conspire against thee; if the heavens gather blackness, and all the elements combine to hedge up the way; and above all, if the very jaws of hell shall gape open the mouth wide after thee, know thou, my son, that all these things shall give thee experience, and shall be for thy good.' (DC 121:7, 122:7)."

She bore her testimony to me and told me essentially that she cannot flip just because I do (which I agree with) and that she would continue to support the yes now that she is there...

I don't know what happened... all this war and rage and turmoil just exploded I guess and I totally lashed out at her - with the purpose of hurting her! (after all my efforts at control, I'm still just a stupid weak human!) - until she would come back to the truth of the matter and vote no because of how many people were being hurt.

I totally made her cry and feel absolutely sick to her stomach...because I wouldn't stop hounding her. I was so desperate to make her see...what have I done?

I stare at my hands. And I don't know what I see anymore. Was my uncle right? I really don't know who I am???

Is this it? Is this where I break with the church? Is this where I lose my family? Is this where I go back on my choice last October? Is this where I find what people call happy? Or is this where I become eternally lost in despair? Where I stand up and keep fighting for what I want to cling to? But how do I go forward to a forward that just isn't there?

I'm sick of war, and I'm sick of fighting, and I'm sick of turmoil, and a gun just looks more and more and more appealing. DON'T YOU SEE WHAT THIS IS DOING TO US?


Sometimes being an beliving Mormon non-acting homosexual who can't stand war is just SHIT.


Makayla Steiner said...

I am so sorry that this is hurting you so much.

I admire your willingness to face the struggle. I can't even imagine how difficult this must be.

I haven't read deeply through all of your posts (I'm at work, and theoretically should not be reading blogs at all), but I'll probably get back to them. Not being able to vote on the Prop 8 issue, I have not read much about it. But I do have one thought. Voting "yes" simply because church leadership has asked us to is an okay reason; IF something else has already taken place. IF you already have a testimony of these men as prophets of God, then taking their word for it can be enough. That said, I don't think anyone should be thoughtless or flippant about their decision. But I do think, in the end, if the church is wrong in this, the Lord will find a way to iron it out. And if they are right, He will find a way to help you iron out the issue as well, even if that means nothing more than offering peace and patience.

We are not part of a perfect organization. I have been doing some thinking lately about prophets and the atonement. Does the atonement function for the church as a whole, as well? When, as an organization, we take the "steps of repentance," are we operating under the atonement? Is that what happened post-Mountain Meadows? Post-1978?

I know prophets and apostles are inspired, and I really, deeply believe that they have the best interests of the world at heart. I don't think they are perfect, because nobody is, but I think they really do see things we can't see. And that's where, as someone who has a gay family member (who I love dearly)I have to move from doubt to trust. And trust that if a mistake is being made, with patience and time, the Lord really will work it out.

That doesn't help much right in this moment, I know. I wish I had something to say that really would.

Regardless, it is clear that you are doing the best you can, and you can't be faulted for that. I truly wish I could say something that would ease your mind and lift a little of the heartache; sometimes I wonder if being helpless to really help isn't somewhat as awful as being in the middle of the struggle. You know, is it harder for the soldier on the front lines, or for his family back at home? Different kind of struggle I guess.

Anyway, I guess what I really wanted to say was, "Hang in there." You have a great heart and where there are good motivations and feelings of charity, only good can come, right?

And don't give up - on your family, on the church, on the Savior, or on yourself. There is still a place in the kingdom for you, and finding that place in the end will be worth the battle.

Keep in touch, by the way, when you can. :)

bale said...

I love 'The Giver', one of my favorites. I'm flip flopping constantly about Prop. 8 depending on the person I'm talking to at the time. With my Mom I'm for it, with my sister I'm against it (agreeing with both). When I'm alone I don't want to think about it but I have to. One interesting thing I should tell you friend is that I've started dating a young lady. We've been friends for over a year and she's been pursuing me all the while. I finally felt impressed to tell her that I'm gay, expecting to discourage her but it didn't so maybe she's 'the one' whatever that means. Things can happen very quickly, especially in Provo. Nothing has changed since you and i spoke in the park at Conference time. I still feel marginalized by the Church and neglected by the Brethren but I can't help wanting to have everything that is promised; Temple Marriage, Children, Eternal Lives... none of which seems possible without marriage in mortality. But none of this seems to solidify my opinion on Prop. 8. Just keep writing friend. Love you.