Sunday, October 10, 2010


I have been thinking a lot about forgiveness lately. Both about the need to forgive and the need to be forgiven. The scriptures say that the more you forgive, the more God will forgive you, but I worry about this because I rarely take offence at what others do to me so I do not have anything to forgive, yet I have done so much that I need to be forgiven of. I suppose that the relationship between forgiving and being forgiven is not directly proportional, meaning if I forgive one sin against me then the Lord will forgive one sin against Him, but rather it is more based on principle, if I forgive all sins against me, than the Lord will forgive all my sins, pending my repentance, of course.

This reminds me I need to forgive all, whether the offender repent or not, yet cannot expect God to forgive me unless I repent. I do not remember the exact quote but the Lord says something like ‘I will forgive whom I will forgive, but unto you it is given to forgive all man.’

Back to my original topic, I have been very blessed in my life, but I often wonder if I would have the strength to forgive someone who did something really bad to me, like hurt one of my children. As I have not been tested in this area, I am still not sure how I would react. I would like to think I could forgive, but at the same time, I hope that my tests come in other areas as I do not want my children to be hurt just to see if I can forgive.

I suppose that is enough rambling for now.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

A Beautiful Letter

This letter was written by Bryan at Gay Family Values. I have re-posted it here because it is so wonderfully written, and it directly applies to those who are being held captive in a "monogamous" society. I have changed a few of the words to directly address our concerns by the [] brackets. To see the original letter click on this link.

Dear hurting soul,

You don't know me....but I know you. I may not know your name, or where you live, or what your favorite color is...but I know you. That's because I have been you. I know that you have been suffering in silence and alone for so long that you don't believe that anyone could possibly understand the way you feel...but I promise you from the bottom of my heart that, that is not true.

You might be staring at the stars over your home and wondering why God made you this way. You may be sitting in the dark, as I used to do, and blaming it all on the devil and wondering why your not strong enough to fight off the me you haven't failed anyone. Maybe your cheeks are burning with shame as you try to ignore the guys sitting behind you in class who are can feel everyones eyes and know its at you. You hear them say [plyg] and wonder if they know about you or if they got lucky. No matter which...every time seems to remind you that you don't belong. So you bury it down inside...but there's so much of it in there now that it threatens to drown you.

You hear the [Bishop] on Sunday talk about how [Fundamentalists] are sinners who have turned their back on God and instead chosen a life of sexual perversion...that they have no place in heaven...and you silently die inside as you ask yourself, "Is that me? It can't be me. It's impossible. I will not let it be me..."

Your Dad makes comments about how all [fundamentalists and polygamists] should die and that he'll never let his kids become one. [He takes off his belt and whips you, because he doesn't think you agreed with him fervently enough.] Your mom shakes her head and says she's sorry for those sick, sad people who have chosen to live that way...she goes on about [the innocent children] and that she [insists they must have been repeatedly raped and abused]...and then you will never be able to tell them about you and you die a little bit more. [Your Mom notices your behaviour and secretly suspects your chaste desires, so she pushes you toward your "monogamous" dad. Your body tightens, your hands clench, and your eyes, and mouth, slam shut as you wish you were dead. You know from past experience that if you resist they will beat you, so you wait for the inevitable kiss, then tongue, then... Self-preservation kicks in and your mind retreats into itself, creating a place of safety and peace, a place far away. They are only too happy to let you know that 'now you are not worthy to live CPM'] "Mom and Dad I love you...but I can never tell you about this because I know you will not understand how hard I fought hard I wished to be [like you]...and how [I never could]. You are too important to me to I will continue to hide it."

Most of us can remember what it feels like to know that your different and to be utterly alone with that knowledge. We remember what it was like to see others falling in love, holding hands, kissing. In the hallways at school, on the walk home from school, behind the bleachers, seeing the pictures of the "power couples" in the year book and wondering when It will be my turn. "Who can I love that will love me back like that?" Maybe that friend you secretly love...but can never tell because you don't know if he/she [shares your beliefs and high standards] and telling them is just too much risk. So you date ["monogamously"]...because that's what your supposed to do...and you hide the truth...from your family, from your friends, and sometimes...your self.

Perhaps you are lucky enough to admit to yourself that you [are Celestial at heart]. Though I know taking that great leap does not mean that you can share that with anybody. Maybe you can tell a friend...or one of your parents...but that does not take away from the soul scouring loneliness you live with everyday at school and elsewhere, as you live with the knowledge that telling others about yourself could mean total rejection and possibly violence. That no place will be safe for you.

I lived most of the examples I wrote above. As did many of us who grew up [drawn to the higher laws] and made it into adulthood. We can remember with ease the burn of shame from each taunt. We can remember the pain of loneliness that promised to never go did. We can remember waking up to the knowledge that we were different from everyone in our family and all of our friends and how it was like a knife twisting in our gut everyday. Those are feelings and times that so many of us have had to come through that we will never forget them.

We made the plans...found the pills...made a few cuts...wrote the notes...stood on the edge of countless bridges, knowing to the core of our souls that dying was the only way was not. Some of us carried through with our decisions only to fail...others stayed the act because something in side us said "maybe tomorrow..but not yet". Without surviving those dark times, we would not know what we do today...

We would not know what our love looks like as he/she's sleeping. We would not know we would one day be a husband to [honest and trustworthy spouses, or a wife to an honourable and faithful man, that we could] not imagine life without. We would not know how much that one kiss can feel like taking your first breath. We would not know how the sun could shine in our daughters and sons eyes. We would not know how much these people would need us...and us them. How beautiful the world can look when we are not in pain....and how many adventures we were going to have because the road seems so long getting to those times.

All you have to do to get show up.

The jocks at the back of the class who call you a [plyg]? They leave high school and quickly figure out that they are not the top of the food chain anymore. The mean girls who made your life a living hell because she thought she owned the world?...the same for her. I remember seeing those people again many years after I left high school....the jocks had gotten fat...the pretty girls had faded into the crowd of pregnant moms. and I realized in those moments that we were all the same.

I won't kid will hold lots of amazing moments for you...but it will also kick you in the teeth too. It wont be easy and some days it may be a fight. You will find love..and maybe lose it a few times. You will fight through that feeling of being alone against the world many more times...and the world knows how to make you hurt.

But in the end...for all the scars...all the lines of care you will get on your face...each gray will have soooo many moments and memories that you will treasure. And for much pain as I have experienced...and as much as I had at times wished that I was someone else, or that I could go back in time and change things...I don't wish those things anymore. I know that without them I could not be here...and here is a pretty good place to be. I used to wish I was blonde haired and blue eyed like the guy everyone loved in my fifth grade class....or that everyone would love me if I could dance. I used to wish I could get back to a day before everything in my life went wrong. Sometimes I still feel that pull...but I could never give up the love of my [wives] and children for that. I realize now that all the stuff I have gone through has brought me to them and I will not trade that for anything.

All I had to do was show up. Keep getting out of bed everyday. Keep being just who I was. Life took care of the rest.

So if you are feeling that you are alone, that no one will understand the torment that you live with day in and day out...that you will lose everyone you love if your secret is known..that you are suffering the bullying of others because you are out...or merely suspected of being [a Fundamentalist]...please know that you are not alone. So many of us have walked this road and we are waiting on the other side for you to get here. Your life will change too...sometimes suddenly...other days, only by degrees...sometimes so strangely that you will wonder at life's strange sense of humor...but it will change and often in amazing ways....and all you have to do up.

From all of us who have been there,

and me --->[Joseph]

Monday, October 4, 2010

Cornmeal Muffins & More

After searching for a long time, we have finally been able to find a local source of dried corn. We have a little grinder and have been making cornmeal and corn flour. We have been greatly enjoying corn muffins and cornmeal biscuits. One of my favorite recipes is a very simple fish recipe that just uses mustard and cornmeal. I simply coat the fish fillets in mustard then role them in cornmeal and fry in butter, it is soooo delicious.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Goats & Chickens

On our little farm we have a few dairy goats and some laying hens. The children play a large role in caring for these animals. The children help feed and milk the goats and they have been able to see a direct correlation between the amount and quality of the feed to the amount of milk the goats produce. And they are able to see the same with the chickens.

When I was young, I thought food came from the store and I did not understand the value of working. I am so very grateful for this opportunity that the children have to learn how things work and to be able to appreciate and partake of the benefits of their labours.