I've been thinking a lot about the whole gay marriage thing lately. It's kind of hard to ignore, since it's plastered all over the internet.
As a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, my belief is that a marriage is between one man and one woman.
But, that's not what I'm going to talk about today.
Mostly, I've been thinking about why anybody should care.
I mean, does gay marriage hurt me?
No. Not really.
I suppose we could dive into all sorts of reasoning why it's bad for society and civilization as we know it, but since I'm sort of simple-minded, all that reasoning is hard for me to grasp, since I have no degree is sociology or psychology or whatever -ology is required to cipher through all the enormous amounts of causes and effects that make or break our society.
I thought long and hard about why it should matter to me at all. There are two things I know:
1) God has laid out his law.
2) Our church has encouraged us to stand up for traditional family.
And I am completely on board with these two things. Give me a commandment, and I'll try my darnedest to keep it. Ask me what the greatest thing in the world is, and I'll tell you it's family, designed by God and set up in His way.
But...should I get myself worked up about what other people are getting themselves into?
I mean, really...why does it matter what Mr.Y and Mr. X are doing?
Why should it effect me?
Why should I care?
People will always break God's laws, and it's neither here nor there to me. I mean, I'm not God, so...?
I asked myself these things, trying to figure out why I should trouble myself with other people's lives.
The answer to this was surprisingly simple:
Because we are supposed to care about each other, and each other's souls.
(And again, when they thought upon the Lamanites, who were their brethren, of their sinful and polluted state, they were filled with pain and anguish for the welfare of their souls. Mosiah 25:11)
We are supposed to crawl out of ourselves and yearn for the soul of another.
(And the church did meet together oft, to fast and to pray, and to speak one with another concerning the welfare of their souls. Moroni 6:5)
We are supposed to put our own selfish inclinations aside and seek after the one.
(Either what woman having ten pieces of silver, if she lose one piece, doth not light a candle, and sweep the house, and seek diligently till she find And when she hath found she calleth friends and neighbours together, saying, Rejoice with me; for I have found the piece which I had lost. Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repenteth. Luke 15: 8-10)
We are brothers and sisters, and should love each other as such.
("We must love all of God’s children because they are our brothers and sisters, even—and perhaps especially—those who are different from us or just appear strange. This conviction and resolve to overcome our lower instincts and truly love all mankind regardless of race, religion, political ideology, and socioeconomic circumstances is one of the grand objectives of our human existence. It is the essence of pure religion. It may not be an easy thing to do. But it is worth doing, and we can do it." President Dieter F Uchtdorf)
We should value to soul of our proverbial neighbor as much as our own.
(For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. Galatians 5:14)
That is why it matters.
That is why I should care.
I'm sure people will give me all sorts of reasons why it's none of my business, and I will proclaim, like Marley, that "Mankind [is] my business!"
That doesn't mean you or I or anyone should stand on the corners condemning people to Hell. That's not what God has asked us to do. I'm not going to pretend that there aren't so-called Christians out there who aren't doing those things. I think there is a fair amount of bible-banging, good-old-fashioned hellfire and damnation-izing going on, which, frankly, isn't our job. Rather than filling our buckets with rocks ripe for throwing, we can take a cue from Christ when he said to the woman caught in adultery, "Go, and sin no more."
While there are plenty of people ready to fling stones at one another, I also know there are people out there who quietly voice God's laws out of pure love and, with an ache in their souls, call out to those who have strayed from God's path.
God asked His children to give a voice of warning, to love His children, to take care of one another, to love our neighbors as ourselves, to seek those who are lost. As Christians, that is what we believe. We want to do as Christ has done. As a baptized and endowed member of His church, I have covenanted to do so.
(Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. Matthew 5:14-16)
So, before you condemn all Christians for butting in, please remember that we are trying to do what we feel is right, and while we are flawed, we are trying to do so because we are trying to love as God loves. Because God has asked us to care, to love, to serve, to warn. We could not look ourselves in the mirror in the morning and call ourselves followers of Christ if we didn't do as He did. It isn't enough for us to just say that we believe in the words of Christ. We must also DO them: Faith without works is dead. James 2:20
No piece of bread,
A broken cart,
An empty soul,
A shattered heart.
All these things
By hand of man
Can be mended,
made whole again.
For God made man
with two hands:
One to work
and till the land.
The other made He
just like the other,
save that it reach out
and lift his brother.