Monday, November 20, 2006

YOKE


I recognize and personally believe that "change" is possible as we evolve as who we are with time, experience, knowledge etc. I am not the same person I was in high school or college or even last year. And I don't desire to be. Though I wish I were younger, better looking, more athletic etc., I don't want go back in time and relive the past if I can't take the knowledge and experience with me. Does that make sense?


So, as -L- points out, we are all changing and evolving - hopefully to someone better. That change is inevitable as we strive to improve who we are.


I recognize and personally believe that ultimately my goal is to be more godlike and that in the eternal aspect of things, the "change" is potential as I accept His will and accept the Atonement. I don't doubt that my traits and characteristics have that potential to evolve into His image. I believe that this evolution is one that I cannot do myself - perfection comes from Christ, not from my "trying really hard to be good and work myself into perfection". (-L-: I don't think we're that far apart here).


But, I recognize that some things may not be "changed" in this life! That is why the scriptures (and Elder Oak's most recent conference talk) are very clear in distinguishing between "healing those who are heavy laden" verses "making one's burden light". Making one's burden light does not take away, evolve, or "change" that burden. The burden is most definitely still there!!! It didn't go a way!! And it may never go away in this life! Why? I don't know - maybe lessons to be learned? Maybe something we need to experience? I don't know... But that is why He offers his yoke - "take my yoke upon you". He doesn't remove His yoke nor our yoke... but He promises to make it "light". So - all I'm saying here is some things in this life remain an integral part of who we are. These challenges, these experiences, these blessings, these burdens REMAIN with us and are not "changed" or "taken from us". But, as he makes these things "light", we can learn from them, grow in the ways we need to grow, evolve as we need to evolve on our journey without being destroyed in the process... Change, in this life, isn't necessarily a requirement. Allowing Him to lighten our burdens is our privilige.

(NOTE: for some, the healing is possible - I don't doubt - but for me, for now, I don't see that this experience that I call my life will be healed through some miraculous "change". For me the "great lie" would be to say that "change" right here and now is possible, even necessary, and within my grasp if I but work hard enough to bring it about, if I but have enough faith - now in my situation, this promise, this temptation, this sense of hope would be a "great lie"!)

I do not consider my homosexuality a "burden". Instead, it is a challenge, even a blessing, and from this challenge and blessing I have learned much! I have become who I am! Even in this last year, this experience has opened my eyes to new aspects of who I am - things that I may not have seen otherwise. Why would I desire to "change" this? I shouldn't!
(I don't want to quivel over semantics - however, this fundamental principle is not semantics!)

I may be cutting myself short. I may be missing the point! I may be sucked into the "great lie" and therefore I'm caving into the natural man or the devil's temptations themselves... But...
For now, for here and now, today, I don't desire to "change"who I am with this scriptural "burden"... I don't see the need... I desire to take His yoke upon me instead, and allow him to make my load light!
So go ahead and tell me where I'm still screwed up! After all, I recognize how flawed I still am and will continue to be!

5 comments:

-L- said...

Beck, ol' buddy, I hope my rantings on the subject haven't been overly annoying. I don't intend to tell people "where they are screwed up," but I do like to talk through it because there are some subtle but important issues under consideration.

You said: For me the "great lie" would be to say that "change" right here and now is possible, even necessary, and within my grasp if I but work hard enough to bring it about, if I but have enough faith - now in my situation, this promise, this temptation, this sense of hope would be a "great lie"!

There are subtle things about this that I want to clarify. Changing orientation here and now through a process that doesn't involve God's intervention (i.e. reparative therapy or some other deliberate process that isn't well studied or quantified at this time) may be possible and it may not be. I don't know, and I don't believe others do either, despite having closed the door on the question. Because such an attempt, especially when believed to be "necessary" and contingent on the motivation and efforts of the person undergoing the therapy rather than the limitations of the therapy itself, may have significant psychological risks, it may or may not be a good idea to try it. It's a case by case thing, and it sounds like you're not comfortable with the prospect.

Having said that, if it turns out change is possible through such an effort, is it something to desire? Again, this is a personal thing, I suppose, but considering the benefits of directing my sexual attractions to my wife, where they belong, and the inability I have to see how I would suddenly cease to be all the good things that make me myself if I had a different orientation, I don't know why anyone would resist.

Finally, as we know, with God all things are possible. But it's not always God's will to make those possible things happen. It very rarely is in situations like this. But I don't know the mind of God, so I'm going to ask him anyway.

You share a yoke with Christ, true, but there's also that metaphorical yoke you share with your wife. Wouldn't that yoke be easier for her if change were achieved? There's no reason to flagellate ourselves when change doesn't come, because it very well may be impossible. But that's not going to stop me from continually looking into it and being well contented with whatever the outcome happens to be.

Beck said...

"There's no reason to flagellate ourselves when change doesn't come, because it very well may be impossible. But that's not going to stop me from continually looking into it and being well contented with whatever the outcome happens to be."

I concur!

But, as I do the best I can with this challenge / blessing / dare I say "burden", and being well contented with my personal quest with my wife and my God, I'm not going to set myself up for disaster WHEN I continue to feel these attractions / inclinations / desires.

I guess I'm anti-therapy. I'm dilusional in thinking I've done a pretty damn good job for 20 years now by myself and I really don't believe in anything someone is going to say to me or work through with me as long as I'm doing reasonably well so - why screw it up...

But, that's a whole different subject.

The main point is... I'm personally content with having my burden lightened verses taken away. Call it a cop out - call it what you may - I'm feeling a middle road that I can travel down safely.

When I fall off the cliff (and it'll be too late) I'll scream for an alternate travel plan.

santorio said...

so, it sounds like you're saying, that even with this yoke, you are still 'light on the feet.'

Beck said...

Yes, they may be light, but I don't have "happy feet":)

the Baker's son said...

While it is a personal question. I don't think stopping trying to change is giving in or giving up.
And I like how you call them Blessings and Challenges. good luck to you