Wednesday, February 18


Elder Bruce C. Hafen spoke in a talk linked here and addressed some common issues in marriages.
"[A] bride sighed blissfully on her wedding day, “Mom, I’m at the end of all my troubles!” “Yes,” replied her mother, “but at which end?”

He goes on to say,
"Every marriage is tested repeatedly by three kinds of wolves. 

The first wolf is natural adversity. After asking God for years to give them a first child, David and Fran had a baby with a serious heart defect. Following a three-week struggle, they buried their newborn son. Like Adam and Eve before them, they mourned together, brokenhearted, in faith before the Lord.

Second, the wolf of their own imperfections will test them. One woman told me through her tears how her husband’s constant criticism finally destroyed not only their marriage but her entire sense of self-worth. He first complained about her cooking and housecleaning, and then about how she used her time, how she talked, looked, and reasoned. Eventually she felt utterly inept and dysfunctional. My heart ached for her, and for him. Contrast her with a young woman who had little self- confidence when she first married. Then her husband found so much to praise in her that she gradually began to believe she was a good person and that her opinions mattered. His belief in her rekindled her innate self-worth. 

The third wolf is the excessive individualism that has spawned today’s contractual attitudes."

I try not to make these posts too long so I'll let you read the entire article if you have time. After reading this I took inventory of my marriage to see how many wolves were attacking my marriage.  
Aesop has a fable about four oxen that stand tail to tail. If the predator, in this case we'll call it a wolf, but in the fable it's a lion, attacks, it's met with only horns. If the oxen separate, through quarreling, the lion has a chance to attack from a weak angle because the oxen are alone. 

Saturday, February 14

Husbands and Wives

This Valentine's Day I'm not thinking so much about what I can do for my wife, but rather what I can STOP doing. 
I found a quote from Elder Joe J. Christensen I'd like to share.

The word deflate gives me probably one of the best visuals I've encountered on why it is important to avoid pointing out our spouses weaknesses or criticize them. 

          I will instead try to remember...

There is so much out there against marriage. Honestly, if I hadn't been taught the importance of forming a holy union with a spouse I'd probably just see marriage as a piece of paper. Well, it's not.
 If it were just a piece of paper I think more people would just sign it and get married, after all what does it change? I've come to find out the answer is it changes everything! 

I hope everyone out there reading this appreciates the people who love them. 

I was worried about losing friends while posting this blog. A lot of my friends do not share the same belief in God, Marriage, Children, Family, and Life in general. Mostly I don't want to come across as preachy. I talked to someone I deeply respect about putting myself out there and he said this, "Ya know, don't worry about it. The people who love you will still love you." I hope you all know I appreciate having you in my life. The lessons I'm learning and the principles I am sharing help me to find joy in this life. I share them with you because I care about you. Even if this weren't an assignment for class, I'd still do it. The class just gave me a little push, and content to post.

Both of these quotes are from the Marriage and Family Relations Participants Study Guide, an optional Sunday School course offered from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. (found here). I got this slide from a Power Point Presentation for my class. 

Thursday, February 12

Public Affairs

A quick last post on this topic:

I have been made aware of a documentary coming out slamming same-gender attraction, and supposedly answering the question, "Was I born this way?"

My opinion: That's not for religion or politics to answer, that's a question for science to explore.

If you're interested, and have about 25 minutes, I'd like you to read an article. Click here to link to it.

It's an interview with Elder Dallin H. Oaks, and Elder Lance B. Wickman from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The interview was given by their Public Relations Department.

The article is about Same-Gender Attraction.

I feel this article expresses tolerance and gets to the main idea that inclinations and actions are very different. Also that we need to be kind and respect everyone.

Without compromising our own standards we can live side by side, and work together for that which is good.

There are a lot of really great quotes I could pull out and highlight, but instead I encourage you to read the article on your own.

I think we are just seeing the tip of the iceberg on this, and many people are still responding emotionally. Time will tell, but in the mean time take some time to read some really great answers to some pretty common questions. This is the closest interview I've found to expressing how I feel. I say closest because these are still general answers given by General Authorities of the Church. When I'm asked these questions it's usually in a personal setting and the need to get more specific is usually warranted. To answer these general questions in the manner in which these men did is impressive.

As always, if you have any comment or questions I'd welcome any feedback. I only ask that it be for the better of the conversation. If you have articles you are interested in feel free to post links in your comment. I'm still learning about this and love to hear other's opinions as well.

Wednesday, February 11

Seeing Both Sides

Elders Dallin H. Oaks and Jeffrey R. Holland of the Church’s Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and Sister Neill F. Marriott of the Church’s Young Women general presidency each spoke on behalf of the Church, outlining the issue and the Church’s position and a "fairness for all" approach. (link to text here)

I like the church's position. We need to consider both sides on this topic. What are we doing to those who are attracted to the same-gender when we deny them equal benefits and tax accommodations? On the other hand, what are we doing to religious freedom when we change the traditional definition of marriage. We need to come to a solution without vilifying the opposition. I think the approach the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has taken is the correct approach.

I hear cries from others demanding that religious leaders start to act like Christ and love their fellow man, is what the LDS Church is offering a relevant Christ-like solution?

Let me know what you think.

I just found this quote and really loved it. I thought I'd share.

“Few people are capable of expressing with equanimity opinions which differ from the prejudices of their social environment. Most people are even incapable of forming such opinions.”
– Albert Einstein

Monday, February 9

Trying Something New

I've been wanting to write a blog about subjects I care about for a while now. I just remembered my wife and I have this site, so I figured with her permission I'd transform our blog into something new.

When people ask where I stand on certain controversial topics my answer is cloaked in half truths.  My views depend on circumstances, as I think many views should. I've never agreed fully with one side or the other, and for a long, long time I have felt alone. How can I let my friends know I care about them, and still express my values? In this instance I'm talking about the issue of Religious Freedom.

I'm asked to wrap what I believe in a tiny easy to deliver package, but I can't. So, this blog will help me catalog what I believe. I also think writing it down and informing others reveals flaws in logic. So, feel free to comment.

When it comes to topics of controversy I can see both sides. I believe all people have the freedom to do what they want, we live in the land of the free, however laws are here to protect us. Yet are our laws missing the mark? I think so.

I read about all sides of any topic, I love to see what people are passionate about. Common Core, Science, Religion, The LGBT Community, Exercise, you name it. I'd like to now write on topics I'm passionate about.

My next post will be about my views on the LDS Church's Press Conference they had Tuesday January 27, 2015.

Click here to read what I'm talking about.

It seems I have found have others that want to come to an agreement on this topic. If you are like me let me know, I've felt so isolated with extremes from both sides that it was hard for me to express what I was feeling without immediately being attacked.

We have to look all around us and see if our actions have consequences. If they do, we have to figure out a way to do what's best for all parties involved. We have to all come to an agreement, not just compromise. We need to agree that here on earth we should to get along, and do so effectively.

I'm excited for this.

Monday, September 5

Photoshoot while waiting for Dad.


Allegra and I took these pics when we were waiting for Dad to come home from work.