Saturday, April 01, 2006

General Conference and Rent

I'm unintentionally continuing with my musical theme in my blogs, although it seems weird to have General Conference and the musical, Rent, in the same post.

I watched General Conference today and was quite inspired by several talks. Unfortunately, the message from Heavenly Father to me was pretty loud and clear: in spite of what I think I might want, the only true way to eternal happiness is to keep following the path I've been on; that is to say that I must stay true to my testimony of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. As much as I try to rationalize things, the fact of the matter is that I do know the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is God's true church on earth and in spite of whatever choices I make in this life, that truth will not change, and I will always know it in my heart.

Conference is supposed to be uplifting, and although in some ways I did feel uplifted and strengthened, I also felt sad because I love Jonah very much, and if I stay on the path I'm on, I know I will hurt him, and I certainly don't wish to do that.

One message that came through very strong for me was that although life's trials and temptations may seem impossible to surmount, God has promised me that they aren't and that I must stay strong and endure to the end. The other message was that I need to worry more about God's will for me rather than what I want myself.

I know that those of you who aren't members of the Mormon Church or who are disenfranchised from it may not understand or agree with that, and I respect that. But it is what my soul felt today. My soul was reminded of what I'm really here to do; that my eternal goals are more important than my temporal goals.

Now don't misunderstand me; that didn't mean I thought, "Oh, well, that's what I need to do, and so I'm going to do it." On the contrary, my thoughts were, "God, why does this have to be so hard? Why does this have to be so confusing? Why is this my trial in life? I don't know that I'm strong enough to do what you ask me to do. You keep telling me I am, and I'm trying to believe you, but sometimes I don't, and then I feel badly about that. But I know that you know my heart and that I am honestly trying to do what I feel you've asked me to do. Help me to want to do your will, and help me be assured of what that will is."

One thing that was said in Conference is that the battles will get harder, not easier. That certainly seems to be the case.

I just want to do what's right. You know? I'm told it will be worth it if I endure until the end. I have to believe it's so. But it's hard. I'm sure many of you understand what I'm talking about.

I feel like such a flip-flopper. One day I'm telling you something; the next day I'm saying the complete opposite. You must all think I'm wishy-washy. But I know what's embedded in my heart, and I can't seem to let it go or even rationalize that it's okay to do so.

Bottom line: like it or not, I know the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is true. I always will. No matter what I decide to do in life, that truth is seared in my heart.

Which brings me to Rent. Jonah and I went to see it tonight. I was feeling crummy because I felt like I was going to have to tell Jonah that I didn't think I could be with him after all, and Jonah seemed down because he sensed it, too (I told you, Jonah is like that; it's like he is so in tune he already knows things. It's a little creepy sometimes (in a good way)).

Contrary to the show's lyrics, I don't believe there is "no day but today." I believe every choice we make has consequences, both in this life and the next.

Anyway, Jonah and I had quite a talk tonight. Again, no pressure from Jonah. He did make it clear he wants to be with me, but said he would understand and respect my choice if I choose otherwise. I said that I just didn't think I could give up what I know to be true. We had a really nice talk. He is such a loving and supportive person, and, most of all, a wonderful friend. Anyway, Jonah had been inspired that the two of us should pray together, and that what we should pray for most of all is that we have peace. And when Jonah is inspired to do something, I feel it's best to follow through. He prayed first, and I prayed second. The Spirit was quite strong, I felt.

So now I'm home. I just said a private prayer. Basically I said, "Heavenly Father, just tell me what to do. Whatever you want, I'll do it. You want me to leave Jonah, I'll do it. You want me to be with him, I'll do it. Just please tell me so I can do it, because I am so confused right now, and Jonah and I are feeling too much turmoil in our hearts because of this situation."

Still waiting on a solid answer. Whatever it is, I just hope I feel at peace with it.


el veneno said...

I felt the same stuff at conference.

Elbow said...

What an amazing post. I am so proud of you. It's hard to do what you are doing, and yet you are determined to do what is right despite the fact that you feel a lot of very strong emotions for Jonah.
I don't think you are wishy-washy at all. You are trying to do something that is difficult. But the Lord will bless you for it, whatever you decide.
The important thing is that you are involving the Lord in this decision, and that will prove to be one of the greatest resources you have in this fight to do what is the most correct for you.
Hang in there, I know you'll receive an answer.

-L- said...

I hear you!

And your ambivalence doesn't off-put me at all! It makes you real and totally understandable to me. You and I are living the same challenges (and lots of others) in a lot of ways. I am so amazed how I can go into a spiritual church meeting and leave with an absolute resolve with regard to some challenge in my life, and then a few hours out I'm already flip-flopping again!

I just rented Rent and I'm looking forward to seeing it for the first time.

Sometimes I think the only reason being gay is "bad" in God's eyes is because to have kids you'll have to leave your gay lover and that will be a terrible betrayal. Hmmm... just thinking out loud. I wish you and Jonah the best.

Foxx said...

"No day but today" is a two-sided coin. On the one hand it can mean, "do whatever you want right now because you may not have time to do it later." A lot of people see Rent as carrying this message. Do drugs, have sex, burn your eviction notice because you want to. But those are the things that made their lives miserable - acting without regard to others. Acting out of selfishness instead of love.

On the other hand it says (and I think this was more the intent of the movie), "Don't be afraid to love today, don't hold love back, or you will miss out on life." They kept talking about wanting "what Angel had," and if you look at him as the example, a "no day but today" attitude is more desirable.

Gay LDS Actor said...

Foxx, I do realize the double meaning of "no day but today," and I agree that we can't stop living life and have to live every day as if it were our last and not let mundane things prevent us from moving forward and living our lives. I was just saying that when I saw the show (the stage version, by the way), the other meaning was what struck me more. Prior to this I had always heard the song attuned to the first meaning (i.e. living life to the fullest without regret), but on the night I saw the show, the other meaning (i.e. living life as if the consequences don't matter) was what hit me more. And I just thought that that was a reckless way to live one's life. But I get your meaning.

-l-, I so know what you mean about constantly flip-flopping. Today is one of those days when I really think it could work for Jonah and me. Who knows what I will think tomorrow. But I, too, have left church meetings with such great resolve and no more than an hour or two later, I'll be having completely opposite thoughts. Very frustrating.

epadavito said...

I felt the exact same way at conference. I was fotunate enough to go to several sessions and at first I wasn't in a good mood because I've been dealing with a lot of temptation lately...and it seemed like every talk was about temptation. I was thinking, what is going on!? Luckily when my mind is going crazy, the choir is what gets me and brings me that peace that I know nothing in the world can give me. Especially that last rendition of "Abide with me" sounds like they are angles; I seriously just close my eyes and dream that I've made it there (the celestial kingdom) and surpassed all this. I know we can do it. Sometimes, I know this may sound crazy, but I like to think that we chose this in the pre-existence. Maybe we were so strong that we told Heavenly Father that we'd go through it so nobody else had to and He knew that we could do it, so thats why we're going through it now. I know that He has protected me in several ways and always looks out for me and has put me in the best position to return back to Him. If that means that I had to be gay, well then I must have a lot of potential then and you too. It seems so unbearable, but the church is always true, it is constant and when the world throws everything at us, a hot guy or whatever, the church is what brings the eternal happiness that our soul yearns for.