Alternative Gay Pride

Thank you for taking a few moments to read my blog today.  In this post, I wish to discuss gay pride in a very different context than that we are usually used to hearing.  It is others' business if they choose to go participate in flaunting their sexuality in parades and such, but I choose not to do so because I do not believe God approves of such behavior.  I believe this because we all are spirit children of our Heavenly Father, and we are far more than our sexuality.  However, in a world where sexuality is waved around on an advertised banner (which, in this case, is rainbow-colored), and hardly regarded with respect or sanctity, I know it is our place as disciples of Christ to show others a different way.  God's way never has been flashy, conceited, morally relativistic, or otherwise varying from the path of righteousness.  His way is simple- it is Christ.  And our Savior is humble, selfless, morally black and white, and perfect in the path of righteousness.  So, how can we shine as members of the Church while experiencing same-sex attraction? 

In the Sermon on the Mount, Christ gives us the answer.  "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father which is in heaven." (Matthew 5:16)  Three essential principles exist here when it comes to setting an example out there.  First, our light and our light alone must be what shines.  When we allow our light to shine before the Lord, it acts as a beautiful light for others to follow in spiritual darkness.  For those who are willing to surrender their spiritual deafness, blindness, lameness, etc., the example of a righteous disciple leads into eternal life.  Naturally, that light will not always be well-received, for as the Savior taught, "If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you." (John 15:19)  Faithful members can take comfort in this scripture, as I do though, which declares, "We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death.  Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him.  Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren."  (1st John 3:14-16)  In essence, as we love the brethren (speaking of General Authorities) and the children of God around us, worldly people will hate us and God will continue loving us.

Second, the result of our light shining is that others will see our good works.  What good does this do for someone experiencing SSA and faithfully living church standards?  It leads others into the light and gives them inexpressible hope, because they know they're not alone.  Satan would have us believe that our example doesn't make a difference, but we make a difference whether the fruits of our work are seen or not.  Some people plant seeds, some people water them, some pull weeds, some stand guard at the garden gates, and others simply point out the beauty of the trees and their fruit.  It just depends on where you are in the beautiful journey to the destination of personal peace and same-sex attraction.  That personal peace is what everyone so desperately seeks in the Church, and some do not find it for many different reasons.  Primarily, though, it is because such people forget who they are and why they're here.  People say we're here to become like our Heavenly Father, but they misinterpret that statement.  The scriptures give insight in Abraham, where it declares, "And we will prove them herewith, to see if they will do all things whatsoever the Lord their God shall command them;  And they who keep their first estate shall be added upon; and they who keep not their first estate shall not have glory in the same kingdom with those who keep their first estate; and they who keep their second estate shall have glory added upon their heads for ever and ever." (Abraham 3:25-26).  

Essentially, when we do whatever the Lord wants, we get eternal life.  That doesn't mean we have to be perfect, in fact, the Lord never has asked individual perfection of us.  He merely asks that we rely on His Atonement, while making and keeping sacred covenants.  His grace is what saves and exalts us; we merely let others see our good works so that they can witness how good works change us into Christlike beings.  As a result of them witnessing that, the witness begins to grow in their hearts, leading them to glorify our Father in Heaven.  This holds true not only in this life, as members with same-sex attraction find friends, receive comforting revelation and direction, and so forth, but it also holds true in the next life when such attractions will fall away, as promised by Elder Holland.  Then those surrounding us with same-sex attraction will have even greater cause to glorify our Father in Heaven, because they will inherit all He has, partly due to our example and leading them in the ways of righteousness.  The Voices of Hope project is a perfect example of this, in which people write essays and/or testify of Christ on video, speaking truth and love regarding how it is possible through the Savior to live a faithful life, while experiencing SSA.  

It is a beautiful truth that our example can be such a marvelous example of "pride", in the sense of confidence towards our God.  As it says in Doctrine and Covenants, "...Let virtue garnish thy thoughts unceasingly, then shall thy confidence wax strong in the presence of God....the Holy Ghost shall be thy constant companion." (D&C 121:45, 46).  We are proud to be His disciples with pure thoughts, confidently walking on the pathway of righteousness in His presence and loving others by the guidance of the Holy Ghost.  This kind of figurative "pride" blesses others, quietly, anonymously, and without show or flashy flaunting.  It is the Lord's way of teaching, the way of teaching which is embodied in the statement, "Preach the gospel, and when necessary, use words."  Let's preach the gospel that way, and show others alternative gay pride.  After all, the Lord did speak of it 2,000 years ago on a rocky hill.  We can spread it everywhere today.  Until next time, my friends.  Love you all! 

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