Tag Archives: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints

An Open Letter to My Sisters on Both Sides of the Ordain Women Controversy

Nope, this isn’t going to be my point of view on who’s right and who’s wrong. Don’t worry. There’s enough discourse out there about this issue, and nothing I say is going to be wiser or more timely, or have any more of an effect on anyone than what’s been said.

What I want to say is this:

I love you.

You are my sisters—daughters of the same Heavenly Father, inheritors of the same divinity, amazing and talented and wonderful sisters of my heart and my soul.

In reality, that’s something that needs to be said more LOUDLY and more often. I love you. I really do. It needs to be said without qualifications.  No more, “I love you but….” just I LOVE YOU and that’s that.

I know—this is NOT going to solve the problems between us. They are complex. There is so much hurt on both sides, so much fighting and bickering, that regardless of anything else that happens, SATAN IS WINNING as he is driving a huge wedge between sisters. Because if a group of women gets together, hold the phone, stop the presses, things WILL get done. If that “thing” is “defeat evil and drive Satan from our midst” then by gosh, Satan is toast. So if he can get us fighting amongst ourselves, he can laugh and shake his chains and sit back in his recliner and watch us like the World Cup. All it takes is a little seed of contention, and wow. Look what it does. It makes me weep.

So no more of that from me.Sisterly love

I know that we may not agree on some things—and this issue IS awfully important. But so what? Does that make you any less my sister? Any less a daughter of God?  It does not.

Here’s what else I need to tell you:

I don’t know what is driving you to make the decisions you are making. I can look at you and try to understand, but I will never understand. I haven’t been in your shoes, I haven’t walked your path.

You do not know why I feel how I do either. That’s okay. You haven’t walked my path, and I can’t expect you to understand my point of view, either.

We can try. We can reach out and seek to understand one another. But every single word we speak or hear, every sight we see, is always going to be colored by the lens of our own experience. We can come closer to understanding, but we will never truly understand one another. If we say we do, we lie. We only pretend. But it’s okay. We aren’t meant to comprehend each other’s soul, not completely.

Only one person can truly understand each and every human being, having atoned for each of us, having taken upon Himself our sorrows and infirmities. That One is the Savior, and this is the reason why He is the only competent judge. So let me say this:

The WHY doesn’t matter. The WHAT doesn’t matter. The thing that matters is that you are my sister.  If you have made choices that have brought you to a place I would not think to go, my heart can break for you, I can pray for you, I can be your friend and your sister, but the one thing I CANNOT do, is judge you.  I can be sad if you pull away across that invisible “line in the sand,” but I cannot and WILL NOT push you further. MY arms are open—no strings attached. Not for “when you come to your senses” or any of that rubbish—they are open NOW. For wherever you are on your journey.

You are my sister, and I love you.

Anxiety and the Things I Know to be True

The world seems to be floundering in anxiety these days.  Weather is weird, there are earthquakes, tornadoes, fires, mudslides, droughts, floods, wars, looming threats of war, citizens of our country taking up arms against their own government, widespread mistrust not just of the government, but of each other. All motives are in question; civil discourse is all but absent in most avenues. It seems as though people are afraid to hear points of view that they don’t agree with. The vibe is just…… icky.

That vibe has infiltrated its way into my psyche, as well. Oh, don’t get me wrong, I still love a good philosophical discussion, but I have fears for the future. For my family–what do we do if things start falling apart around us? Will we be prepared? We’ve been doing the ol’ food storage, gardening, trying to be frugal, get our flashlights ready stuff–but people are changing, and I fear what they are capable of if their usual comforts run dry.  I worry about my family’s economic future. I worry about the world my kids are growing up in. I worry that I won’t be able to make it as an author. I worry…..

Underneath all this anxiety, there is always a mooring that I anchor myself to. There is always the THING I know. It’s really thingS plural, but it comes down to that. God is my Father. Literally. He loves me. He only wants good for me–and He is the only one that ultimately knows what that good is. Jesus Christ is my Savior and He lived and died for ME, and was resurrected on the third day, so that I (and all the world) will be resurrected and brought home to God one day. I know that Christ paid for my sins, so that if I just do what I am supposed to by following Him and working my darnedest to be better every single day, I WILL be able to be with God, and my family, forever. I KNOW that because God loves me, and Jesus atoned for me, that in the end, I WILL BE HAPPY. Everything will work out how it should, and I will be happy with the final results.

It’s the real Easter message. It’s the message of every day when I get up and start again. I cannot say that I still don’t feel fear for all of the details of life, but the equation is like this: to the degree that I REMEMBER these things, and practice trust and faith in them, I feel peace. This gives me hope that I will be able to be strong enough, capable enough, that with God’s help, I and my family will be able to valiantly stand, faithful and true to our God and our beliefs.  I KNOW.

Everything else is just details.