Sunday, May 1, 2011

Fast and Testimony Meeting

Today was fast and testimony meeting, wherein members of the congregation are welcome to stand and share their testimonies on a number of topics.  Testimony meeting is something I love, but it's also something that can peeve me out, because as you'd expect, giving the floor to a huge group of people usually results in a lot of irrelevance.

Still, there are always those who understand that testimonies are about gospel topics instead of thank yous or personal histories.  There was one of those today that pierced me pretty deep.  A nice looking kid in my ward stood up and started talking about something or other; the previous testimonies had numbed my attention a little and I wasn't paying attention too closely.  What caught my ear was when he started talking about how our anger often gets directed at Heavenly Father for our shortcomings.  He also said that oftentimes, we'll direct our frustrations in our lack of faith at the Lord for letting us have crises of faith.

I do that a lot and I know it's something I should work on.

The young man continued, saying that his anger shouldn't be directed at God when things go awry, as those challenges are meant to strengthen us.  I tend to scoff at those who are grateful for their trials, because trials suck and I like life better when it's easy, but for some reason this guy in my ward convinced me a little bit that he was actually grateful for the growth that results.  This is all stuff I know; I was just grateful that the message came during the small amount of time I was actually paying attention in church today.

This guy's testimony doesn't make homosexuality any easier to navigate and even right now, I'm fighting the urge to get bitter and annoyed because I have to deal with it, but still, hopefully some of what he was talking about will seep into my twisted brain.

While I wasn't paying attention, I decided to write down my testimony.  I didn't really feel like sharing it in front of the ward, mostly because I'm afraid my current bitterness and gayness might show through, but I wanted to have it out there so I could refer to it a little bit.  Here it is:

I have a testimony of God's love for His children.  Amid all the doubt I face about the church and my ability to serve the Lord and endure, I still know that God loves me.  Jesus Christ died for my sins and afflictions and suffered for my sorrows and depression.

I don't know the path my life will take right now, but I do know that God knows what is best and as I pray and do my best to do His will, eventually everything will be okay.

This is the part of my testimony that never has shaken.  I have ALWAYS known that God loves me and I've always had a very strong testimony of the work that Jesus did and does for me.  It's just the submission of myself to the Gospel that's given me trouble in the past.

I'm not going to lie; I'm still holding onto a hope that someday I'll feel that it's okay to be gay.  But I know I won't be able to feel that way without confirmation from the Spirit, so for now my main priority is following God's plan for me as I understand it and figuring out how to live with my issues and concerns regarding the Church's doctrine and lack of information about my struggle.  I know God won't change his will according to my desires, so I'll work on changing mine according to His.

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