Saturday, May 10, 2008

Sometimes the truth hurts

Yes, Heavenly Father love us no matter what, but that doesn't give us a blank slate to draft our own set of personal commandments. And yes we do need to be tolerant to other faiths who may believe different then us, but that doesn't make them right. And we do have to respect the agency of those within our faith who either choose not to follow them or who mess up. You can do this without lowering your own standards.

Moral standards are sets of guidelines based on commandments of God and if lived they ensure that we keep those commandments. Yes, there are sometimes difference in the commandments and standards of the church and the cultural hedges we put up around the commandments. But when it comes to homosexuality its pretty set.

I was thinking about this. I think that sin as defined is anything that separates us from God. So it really doesn't matter what the sin is. I think part of why self lothing becomes an issue is that we begin to dwell on it and our happiness more then we dwell on our desire to live in such a way that pleases God. There is a gradual slide between wanting to believe that we can be happy and a good person and live a lifestyle that is sinful. And since we are good people how can we do evil. God knows our hearts right?

This fosters the whole "my relationship is with God and not the church" when we start to feel that since we are good people, what we want to make us happy is what God approves of because God wants us to be happy. Then pride takes over.

To throw out a standard because its too hard to follow or because its caused pain for the person who is unable to cope with the reality of it is rather shortsighted. Now yes we need to be Christlike and loving and understanding and help those who do struggle. When something is of worth it is often hard. What if someone who doesn't struggle has issues with not waiting to have sex before he is married. And has sex then feels guilty about it and kills himself. Do we blame God for saying that sex before marrige is a sin and its what caused his guilt and pushed him to kill himself? Yes, suicide is tragic and my heart goes out to those who have ended their lives, but its not an excuse for removing moral standards set in place by God. Only God can do that and he does that through his prophets.

We all want to be happy. But sometimes the hard cruel reality is that what we want and what the Lord wants isn't the same. He loves us and wants to bless us. He doesn't want to be separated from us. I think when we look at that as the real reason He has commandments, to prevent us from doing things that would separate us from Him and less as restrictions we can see that He does love us. When you factor in the atonement all He's done his love is abundant. He hates sin not because He doesn't want us to be happy or enjoy life, but because He knows the end results, He knows what will hurt us, what is real and what isn't and He knows that there are certain things we can do which if He is to be just, divine law dictates that there is justice and the last thing He wants is to be separated from us.

Its His work and His Glory is to bring to pass our eternal life and for us to inhareit what he has. He knows our actions can prevent that. So he has done everything in his power to warn us and protect us. He does this out of love and not vengefulness. He knows sometimes we want things that we think will make us happy but he knows will rob us of our eternal potential and thats why they are sin. Not because he is a cruel God who doesn't want us to be happy. Our happiness is in us becoming like him.


One of So Many said...

Tell me of the joys of the gospel. Tell me of the happiness I'll find there especially given the unique circumstances I'm in.

Tell us how we can feel the hope and the joys of the gospel you feel. Focus on the positive motivations. Focus on the feelings of the spirit, of hope of happiness.

I know the rules and the law as most of us, I suspect, do. I'm just tired of fear and condemnation. I self flagellate more that you can comprehend. I don't need more.

Have you learned nothing about tact and how to manipulate people from our discussions? ;)

If you keep doing it this way it comes across more that you are trying to justify your path to yourself.

robert said...

Sin & Evil: In the Aramaic Language and culture that Jesus taught in, the terms for "sin" and "evil" were archery terms. When the archer shot at the target and missed the scorekeeper yelled the Aramaic word for sin. It meant that you were off the mark, take another shot. The concept of sin was to be positive mental feedback. Sin is when you are operating from inaccurate information and thus a perceptual mis-take. When you become conscious and aware if the results of your inaccuracy you have the option to reconsider what you have learned and do as they do in Hollywood, "do another take." By the way, where the arrow fell when it missed the target was referred to as evil.

robert said...

"I think that sin as defined is anything that separates us from God."

Where did you learn such a thing? The study of linguistics does a great deal to demystify such things. You seem to be very narrow in your thinking, but I want to know you anyway.

[kɹeɪ̯g̊] said...

"I think that sin as defined is anything that separates us from God."

Ok, let's say I agree with that, but many people can have different thoughts about what separates us from God. Your argument is flawed because it requires an assumption that homosexuality is sinful/separates us from God, and the way you argue against homosexuality presupposes we agree with you on that basic assumption - which many don't.

I don't think it is at all accurate to say (like you have with your brother) that living a "gay lifestyle" inherently causes unhappiness. That's what many in the church say/want us to think, but it's a false correlation. Many who are gay are unhappy, true, but so are many who aren't. I am very happy, happier than I was when I was active in the Mormon religion, and I have a better, closer connection to God, and yet I am gay. I know many, many people whose lives prove that the simplistic linking of unhappiness and homosexuality is wholly false. To simplify people's complex lives and experiences and to say that you know why someone is experiences a difficult time is extremely short-sighted and incredibly presumptuous of you.

I agree that God wants us to be happy, but I disagree that you know what will make me happy and what the specifics are of what God wants for my life. You can't know that. You love to pretend you have all the answers, especially for everyone else, but the fact is, you don't. Just focus on yourself.

Forester said...

For some reason, I don't seem to be offended by your words. Your words aren't offensive. Am I missing something here? Are you condeming others, or just simply stating the way you feel, so as to get feedback. I'm not sure if we are all held to the same standard in the church.

Forester said...

Sorry my previous comment seemed vague. I was in a hurry. It seems that your words fit more closely with those of us who believe in the Church of Jesus Christ and are trying to make sense of our situation. For those of us in this situation, we know we will not be happy if we do not live the gospel of Christ, as set forth in the doctrines of the church.

Because I believe the teachings of the church are from God, going against those teachings does more than make me feel guilty. Guilt for me is really not that bad. What I feel when I sin is like the feeling you get when hurting someone. I don't like to hurt other people, including myself. When my children misbehave, I get angry, but more than the anger, I feel sad. I want them to understand why saying bad things to their siblings is more than not appropriate, it undermines our happiness as a family.

When my sins are more grievous, my spirit aches and sometimes even my body aches. I have felt like vomitting after realizing what I have done to others and to myself. I guess what I'm trying to say is that for me, going against the teachings of the church makes me unhappy - not from the guilt, but from an internal spiritual aching that can only be removed through repentance and the mercy of Christ.