My thoughts and musings on living a straight, Christian life while dealing with same sex attraction (SSA). Respectful comments are welcomed.

Saturday, February 25, 2006


It has been said that the gate of history turns on small hinges, and so do people's lives. The choices we make determine our destiny.

This quote by Thomas S. Monson sums up one of the themes that I have been trying to communicate lately. Small choices are part of how Satan leads us carefully down to hell. Most of us have heard the story of the frog in cold water that gets slowly heated up, and how the frog won't realize he's being boiled to death. I'm sure we can all look and see that pattern in our own mistakes, whether they have to do with this issue or not. I see the same slow slide away from the church in several of the blogs I have read lately, and I worry for those being so lead, but how do I communicate that without giving offense? I'm not sure, maybe there is no way.

Often times, we don't realize that we are choosing one path over another (LDS Gay RM talked about this in this post). Sometimes that is because it doesn't seem that the choice is relevant to bigger things, and sometimes, I think, it is because we talk ourselves into believing that what we are doing is OK. We rationalize away our conscience to allow ourselves to choose a path we know is wrong. Still, we don't always see the end of that path, or we might not choose it (and thus the phrase "carefully lead").

I do know that the Gospel is true, and that even though it may give us some hard choices, it is the best way to happiness. The gospel definition of sacrifice is to give up something important to us for something of greater worth. I know that sacrificing my physical desires about SSA will bring me greater blessings, and are worth what I am giving up.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Strengthening Our Faith in God

I subscribe to LDS Gems, a daily e-mail of quotes and thoughts. I have used several here on this blog. I got one today that I would like to share. It's by Henry B. Eyring of the Quorum of the Twelve.

However much faith to obey God we now have, we will need to strengthen it continually and keep it refreshed constantly. We can do that by deciding now to be more quick to obey and more determined to endure. Learning to start early and to be steady are the keys to spiritual preparation. Procrastination and inconsistency are its mortal enemies.

Let me suggest to you four settings in which to practice quick and steady obedience. One is the command to feast upon the word of God. A second is to pray always. A third is the commandment to be a full-tithe payer. And the fourth is to escape from sin and its terrible effects. Each takes faith to start and then to persevere. And all can strengthen your capacity to know and obey the Lord's commands. (emphasis added)

This is not to say that if you read your scriptures and pray, that your trials will be taken from you, or that you will suddenly be straight. It means that as we submit our will to God's, we will have the strength and the ability to move past the sins which do so easily beset (us).

Having the Faith to obey God has been an unstated theme of several of my posts. I can see in the above quote some areas in which I can improve and plan to try to do so.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Apology and reply to comments

I read a comment on one of my posts that lead to some comments about my blog on some other blogs. I must apologize for any offense. I didn't realize how small the blogging world is when I first started, and I wasn't as tactful as I should have been. I have tried since then to respect the opinions of others, whether I agree with them or not. I will not get into "bashing" sessions through comments, but I will engage in a respectful dialogue when I think both of us can be open to the other person's opinion. (Any disrespectful comments will be deleted, respectful disagreement will not.) For those of you who think that the church is closed minded and bigoted, I don't think we will see eye to eye, so you and I will have to agree to disagree and not waste each other's time further.

My intent was not to offend, nor to be self-righteous (I have a serious dislike for self-righteousness). There are things I am still trying to figure out, and things I still don't live as fully as what I believe.

I do believe most solidly in the Gospel as taught in the LDS church. I know that this life isn't the end and that we have a loving Father in Heaven who wants what is best for us, even when that means difficult trials for us. I believe that the Prophet speaks for God, and following his counsel will bring us the greatest happiness. I believe that we need to use the brains God gave us and understand his counsel, rather than following blindly. Maybe that's what lead me to study psychology (a field which has it's flaws, to be sure, and has a very liberal slant). There is plenty of research showing that sexual orientation is not set in stone, although it is harder for some to change than others. I believe the churches position on homosexuality.

To me, these things (about the Gospel) are so clear, that I am occasionally baffled and saddened when they aren't as clear to others, especially when I see people rationalize grave errors.

I apologize for being tactless, for I see that I was. I apologize if I seemed self-righteous, for that was not my intent.

For those who want to understand more about the church's stance, here are some articles from the Ensign.

Same Gender Attraction by Dallin H. Oakes discusses scientific research and, the churches position on the terms Gay and SSA, and the responsibility of members to love and support those with this issue.

Compassion for Those Who Struggle is an anonymous article by one who has this issue, and responds to those who say it's unfair to give the choice of being celibate or ex'ed.

Thanks to those of you who have been patient with my faults.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Adversity and Humility

...adversity is a necessary part of Heavenly Father's plan for the happiness of His children. If our hearts are right before God, adversity will school us, help us overcome our carnal nature, and nurture the divine spark within us. Adversity helps us see where we need to repent, to bring into subjection baser instincts, to embrace righteousness
and enjoy 'peace of conscience' (Mosiah 4:3)." -Elder Keith B. McMullin

I have been saving this quote all week, waiting to blog on it (and not having time), but thinking about it a lot. I think it really applies to those of us with this issue. I can't help but wonder if we (or at least some of us) are so strong willed that we need a bigger trial to humble us. Still some fight being humbled and demand answers from God and the church, others of us see ourselves as victims and say "poor, pitiful me" rather than being schooled, or worse yet, blame God for punishing or slighting us. We think that the Church asks too much of us (rather than seeing it as what the Lord is asking of us).

After mulling this all week, we went to see "Joseph Smith: Prophet of the Restoration" at the Legacy theater next to Temple Square. The Lord's answer to Joseph in Liberty Jail really seemed to apply to this issue:

My son, peace be unto thy soul; thine adversity and thine afflictions shall be but a small moment...Thou art not yet as Job

He continues in the next section to say 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 fierce winds become thine enemy; 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. The Son of Man hath descended below them all. Art thou greater than he?

I find it very easy to think I have been given to much too deal with (especially with this issue), and use that as an excuse to give up, but I know I need to remember that all these things shall give me experience and will be for my good. I need to trust in the Lord and what He has in mind for me.

Friday, February 10, 2006


Well, it's been a hectic week, and that has taken it's toll (and has kept me from posting). I have had less sleep, more stress, and a bit of depression. This has lead to more temptation. While I didn't give in, I flirted with it more than I should. Even now, I am wanting to close this window and go searching. I am not, I chose to write this instead, and now I am going to go take a nap with my wife.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

the psychology of Gay vs SSA

On a blog I read recently, the guy said he was gay/ssa, but wasn't going to get into semantics. I respectfully disagree - I think it's more than semantics. Obviously, I think it makes a difference, as I choose to make the distinction. Here are my thoughts on why.

First, we are told in the scriptures that as a man thinketh, so is he. A motivational saying (not LDS in origin, but compatible with LDS beliefs) says:

Watch your thoughts; they become words.
Watch your words; they become actions.
Watch your actions; they become habits.
Watch your habits; they become character.
Watch your character; for it becomes your destiny!

If we identify ourselves in a certain way, doesn't it then follow that our destiny will be guided by that thought about ourselves?? How we identify ourselves has to factor in to how we make our choices, even in the choices we see as available to us. In other words, self talk guides who we will become and how effective we are at what we undertake. Why would we want to work against ourselves that way?

From a less philosophical point of view, Alfred Kinsey was a landmark sex researcher who concluded that sexual orientation isn't all or nothing. He developed the Kinsey scale which shows a spectrum of attraction between heterosexual and homosexual attraction.

The point is that even for those of us dealing with this, it usually isn't all or nothing. To identify as gay would likely be to state the situation as being more extreme than it is.

Maybe you can see yourselves as gay and still see yourselves as having options, but why make the battle harder than it has to be??

Friday, February 03, 2006


I go to an Evergreen support and accountability group. I will tell all of you what we told a new member in our group this week. It is a safe place, one where you can be yourself and be open. It is a place for support and friendship, a place of growth. Each person takes away something different from the experience. Knowing that everyone there has the same issue removes the worry about being found out, about how people will react, etc. It is a place for healthy male bonding. And it is something of a spiritual experience.

Each meeting opens and closes with a prayer, has a reading of the mission statement, and a lesson. This takes up about the first half hour. The rest of the meeting is for check-in. Each guy has a few minutes to talk about how his week has gone, and to talk about what he is struggling with that week (without any details-like places or websites-that might tempt someone else). He can choose to have feedback from the group, which is to be based on that person's experiences (not advice giving). Then, there after the closing prayer, most of the guys just hang around and visit for a while. There is usually a lot of hugging, if one is comfortable with that.

I come away from each of these meetings very charged up and uplifted. I feel supported and renewed (at the risk of sounding sappy). I have made some good friends, and it has been a very positive experience for me.

Thursday, February 02, 2006


Sometimes something made to entertain hits upon some great eternal truth, and then the entertainment hits home for all of us. Here is one such truth wrapped up in one simple quote. Dark and difficult times lie ahead...Now is the time that we must choose between what is right, and what is easy.

Ever has this been the choice we as humans have faced, but I think the time is coming when we will not be able to sit on the fence. We will need to take a stand; be determined and not "tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive."