Thursday, March 29, 2007

Which side of the line?


With the change of seasons also comes General Conference. It's in the air in Utah. It's on the commercials where absolutely disgustingly gaggy ads for local bookstores peddling equally gaggy and disgusting "new reads"abound. I guess it's just part of the culture of living here along the Wasatch Front.

Mission reunions are advertised in the paper and discussed at the water cooler. I've never understood mission reunions. I've attended a few. All of the close companions and friends I really want to see again are never there, but the other guys that you hope never to ever see again are always there - d'you know what I mean? My neighbor next door still goes every conference to his reunion and helps in organizing it as well. I just don't get it! What am I missing here? My mission presidents are both dead - been that way for years... they were way old when I was on a mission and that was a couple of decades ago...

Maybe we should have a MOHO Bloggers Reunion of all those within a driving distance of SLC. What do you think? It could be quite interesting - especially since the majority of us would be wearing a sack over our heads in hopes of maintaining our vain attempts of anonymity...

So conference comes and with it comes the hope of some "great announcement" of some kind from the Prophet (maybe a temple in Rome?). I don't want a "great announcement" of any kind - I just want a sense of peace, a bit of enlightenment, a reminder of how I can work to do better... that's it. That's enough, really. I mean, if I really did do something a bit better with my life each six months and stopped whining about how unfair my situation is, it really would be something!

In reality, I bet we will hear something along these lines:


There are two influences ever present in the world. One is constructive and elevating and comes from our Heavenly Father; the other is destructive and debasing and comes from Lucifer. We have our agency and make our own choice in life subject to these unseen powers. There is a division line well defined that separates the Lord's territory from Lucifer's. If we live on the Lord's side of the line Lucifer cannot come there to influence us, but if we cross the line into his territory we are in his power. By keeping the commandments of the Lord we are safe on His side of the line, but if we disobey His teachings we voluntarily cross into the zone of temptation and invite the destruction that is ever present there. Knowing this, how anxious we should always be to live on the Lord's side of the line".
-- George Albert Smith, 1935.


True religion is pretty much that clear. There is a line drawn in that proverbial sand. Things are black and white, whether we wish them to be in a rainbow of color, want them to be more inclusive, desire them to be otherwise. We as MOHOs can wish for things to change, want that the Prophet give us clearer direction on SGA / gay issues, or desire that there be more understanding - but bottom line - the Church is always going to be black-and-white in where it stands (and rightfully so), just as stated in this quote from over 70 years ago!

So, I don't expect the Prophet this weekend to be much different now that 70 years have passed from the time of this quote. Some things don't change. Consistency, just like the "North Star" - that's the name of the game...
It always comes down to which side of the line we choose to be on...


9 comments:

MoHoHawaii said...

Here's some funny speculation about what might be announced at General Conference.

Mormon Enigma said...

Here's some funny speculation about what might be announced at General Conference.

I especially liked the one about them waking all of us up and we'll realize we're still in the preexistence :-)

Here's to general conference!

(and the best part, no 6:30am meeting on Sunday)

Elbow said...

I feel the same way you do (surprised?) but I just don't even want to think about GC. Anyone up for some sun time in Central Park?

Mormon Enigma said...

Maybe we should have a MOHO Bloggers Reunion ... the majority of us would be wearing a sack over our heads in hopes of maintaining our vain attempts of anonymity...

LOL

(maybe we could get those 'queer eye' guys to help us make the bags look fashionable)

Seriously, it would be nice to meet other MoHo's some day. Alas, I'm stuck in the middle of the bible belt. You think being gay and Mormon is bad - try being Gay & Mormon while surrounded by Baptists :-)

Beck said...

MOHOH: Thanks for the laughs! Speculation does tend to get out of hand at times. To be honest, I really don't worry much about GC.

Beck said...

M.E: I really would like to have a MOHO reunion of sorts! I nominate you as the party central when you come to town next!

Your comment about having it so tough in the Bible Belt reminds me of my non-Utah mission companions, who, upon finding that I was from Utah, immediately went into their rave about "you just don't know how hard it is to be a good LDS person when you live in Utah". We'd then get in fights over whether it's harder to be an active / believing LDS in Utah with cultural norms and boredom and complacency rule the day, verses, being active / believing LDS outside of Utah because you have to because there is no one else and you're an example to everyone of those 1,771 students in your high school and you being the only member (other than your sister)... obviously there are pros and cons to each side. Needless to say, we all have our struggles wherever we may be.

Mormon Enigma said...

Your comment about having it so tough in the Bible Belt reminds me of my non-Utah mission companions

Don't take my comment too seriously. :-)

I left on my mission from California. I used to call Utah missionaries Easterners. Most would take it in stride (as it was intended). But, some would become quite incensed.

Beck said...

ELBOW: I'll meet you at the top veranda of the Belvedere Castle at noon on Saturday! I'll be in the tower - I'm sure you'll recognize me. I'll be the geeky tall slender guy with a bag over my head with a cool digital camera around my neck! :)

I wish...

Beck said...

M.E. Don't take my comment too seriously either... It just reminded me of those fun debates where I always had to defend being a believing Utah Mormon - obviously we "Utah Mormons" have a lot to fight against as well - I would argue - and the fight would be "among" the crowd, not "against" the crowd.

Anyway, I love you, man, and appreciate your hard times and good times and struggles wherever you may be!