I've been a mess of emotions these last few weeks. A surge of thoughts and feelings has passed over me and taken up home since December 20th 2013. On this day, a district judge, completely within his jurisdiction and authority, overturned Article 3 of the Utah State Constitution and legalized same-sex marriage in the Beehive State.
Since this most unexpected of Fridays, I have gone through so many ups and downs. I cried, hard, when I heard the news. Friends who had waited years to make things legal with the people they loved rushed to the courthouse to sign something I had taken so for granted at the time of my own wedding: a marriage license. It's a simple little piece of paper, but means so much to two people who are really dedicated and committed to each other.
I have had many disappointing moments. These moments have come in the form of mean-spirited social media comments, uneducated editorials and an overall un-Christian attitude from a group whom I consider peers and fellow saints.
Many have asked me how I can support gay marriage when it is so opposed by the leaders of my church. I struggled with this answer for so long. I have been a life-long member. I've also supported the right for all consenting adults to marry whomever they choose for as long as I can remember.
The monday following Judge Shelby's ruling, I watched the news as dozens of couples made their way to the Salt Lake Courthouse. I felt so much love and kinship for these happy people. I decided to head up and soak up a little goodness for myself. I took my 4-year-old son, and together with some friends, made and handed out flower bouquets to couples standing in line waiting for licenses.
I wished in that moment that every one of my friends who thought this was such an evil happening could have been there. Tears flowed freely as families were bonded together, as dedicated and devoted couples expressed love and commitment to each other and as the sacred institution of marriage was celebrated and honored. There was no flaunting of any sort of agenda, or flamboyancy, or hatred. Just love. Lots and lots of love.
So when it comes to my conflict of faith, or how I support something that the leaders of the church I love so dearly oppose so adamantly, I just say "I don't know". It's an issue I truly believe time will fix. The leaders of the LDS church recently published a statement saying, essentially, that there was no divine inspiration for the ban on blacks in the priesthood for some 100+ years. I anticipate at some date a similar post will be made about the church's stance on gay marriage.
For now though, I embrace love and change. I am trying hard to respect all views, and not to judge those I love and look up to for their own stance on this issue.