Sunday, September 27, 2015

But it's Natural!

On my mission I frequently encountered individuals with an affinity towards marijuana.  We were frequently asked what our views were on pot, and most of the time our responses were met with scorn.

“But it’s natural!” they would counter.  “Why would God create such a plant and let it grow on the earth but tell us not to use it?!”

Actually, that’s the first thing He did.

As you may recall, following the creation of Adam, he Lord God “commanded the man, saying: Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat.  But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it” (Moses 3:16-17, Genesis 2:17).

I’m not going to go into the potential medicinal properties of marijuana (certain chemicals within the plant can be isolated and used to treat ailments without causing a high); I simply use this as a reference to the Word of Wisdom and moreover to the commandments of God.

While marijuana is a natural life form that God Himself created and allowed to grow on the same planet that we inhabit, He was commanded us not to partake of it.  There is symbolism in this commandment.  As we are taught by King Benjamin, “the natural man in an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, ad will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticing 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).

There are many in this world today who argue that same-sex attraction is natural, even biological, and should therefore be embraced.  Whether or not there is a “gay-gene” (which I highly doubt), not every urge, appetite, and desire should be acted upon.  If we learn anything from King Benjamin’s admonition, it is that we must deny ourselves whenever our natural inclinations come into conflict with the commandments of God. 

It is extremely difficult to avoid temptation and acting thereon, but it must be done in order to secure salvation.  Same-sex attraction is one of the most heart-wrenching temptations, in my humble opinion, because it distorts the pursuit of love.  While we may not understand the purpose for which our Heavenly Father has bestowed this characteristic to some of His children, we must become as children, “submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, [and] willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon [us].”

I know that as we deny the natural man in order to keep in good standing with Christ, we will be exalted to holy men (and women) fit to enter His presence.  Nothing is as sweet or fulfilling as His trust.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

The Mold

I'm sure most Mormons know what the Mormon "mold" is - the perfect family without quarrels, each member of which is a well-behaved temple recommend-holding smiling angel.  Mormons with SSA recognize what I refer to as "straight-privilege" that ripples throughout Mormon culture.

Here's a blog post that adequately conveys my feelings on the Mormon Mold