Sunday, April 16

He is Risen

Life is hard. Times can be difficult, and days long and full of pain. Mine is no exception - the last few months have torn me apart emotionally and given me pause time and time again.

And yet He is Risen.

Jesus Christ - the Son of the Highest, God of the Universe, King of Kings and Lord of Lords - overcame death, sin, and sorrow. And through His Grace, so can I.

There is enormous meaning in sorrow. There is beauty hidden deep in pain. In torrential, even drowning rain comes some of the most powerful messages that eternity can offer.

But some days, the sun shines, the breeze blows, flowers bloom, and God Himself rises from the dead. And somehow, with a miracle that goes beyond any that has ever or ever will be done, offers that same gift to each and every one of us.

Today is that day.

Today is the symbol of rebirth. That death will and must and should come to me - and that I can cast off the natural man and become a new man alive in Christ.

Today is the symbol of change. That I come to Earth an imperfect being and undergo miraculous transformation, through enormous effort... and by infinite grace of God.

Today is the symbol of love. That Jesus Christ suffered so that He could understand *my* pain. To be a part of *my* life... because of a love greater than I can understand. He knows me. He knows what it is to feel my pain, and He has carried my grief and can walk with me along the pathway on which He has already traveled.

At the end of the day, the trials I suffer in life are the very things that make life worthwhile. Today is the reason that life is. That I will face darkness and can find light. That I will face death and will find life. That Jesus Christ is the Life, the Light, and the Savior of my soul.

Christ is Risen. May His Spirit be with you today and always.

Happy Easter.

Monday, March 13

Betrayed

Someone counseled me last night to keep my heart open.

But they had no idea how hurt I was inside.

Keeping an open heart is being open to betrayal, to hurt, to loss and overwhelming pain. It's being willing to emotionally invest in people who might never give back, willing to believe in places that may only lead to sorrow. It's not being blind to people's failures, but being willing to believe in them and their ability to change, to trust them, to give them endless chances to move forward and try again.

It's a tried-and-true method of exchanging love for more hurt than I could ever imagine.

And is it worth it?

Emotionally? No.

I've started keeping track of the friendships I try to develop. And the vast majority end in excruciating pain on my end... usually long before they begin to pay emotional dividends. There is no rational reason for me to share my heart with individuals or the world when for decades doing exactly that has led to pain, betrayal, and realizing that others never really cared in the first place.

In some twisted, or divine, way, though, that same pain has made me a better person. More aware of the pain and sorrow and suffering in the world... and, ironically, it has opened my heart to helping others.

But each time I'm burned I find have a hard time trusting people again. I can trust them to exist, to make mistakes, and perhaps to even bring some sort of temporary respite to life. But can I trust them to be committed? To be honest? Is it wise, or even safe, to give my heart and soul to someone, even when they need it, when so many have crushed it without a word or a care?

That's the thing. Being a true friend to someone requires trust, even in tenuous times. It requires honesty and vulnerability. 

And the reality of the matter is that those will lead to pain... as they have in the far and recent past.

Hence why I am in pain right now.

I want it to stop.

And I could make it happen. I could numb in a thousand different ways - from seeking endorphin highs at the gym to drinking myself to oblivion. And to keep myself safe I could close my heart and simply stop believing in people. 

Closing off to people, and the world, isn't hard... and likely few would even notice.

But that's not what life is, right? It's important to surround myself with good people. To choose my closest friends from only those who have made the same goals and who are committed to being there for me for eternity. But it's also important to love people... to forgive them... and to turn to relationships with the hope that the other person will be there for me - to be reliant and give people the opportunity to be there for me and part of my life a second and a third and a thousand other times.

Dear world, I am hurt. You have betrayed and discarded me once again, when I did everything I knew how... and gave everything I had.

And yet a sense of honor, and need to do the right thing, and whatever else it is, courses through me. Honor sometimes seems masochistic. Why would I jump back into the fray of emotional pain only moments after being destroyed... just because it's the right thing to do?

Because it's the right thing to do.

For everyone else, it seems that the game returns a net positive. And while it may ultimately bring me only pain and misery, at least I can be a friend to someone for a moment along the way... and make the world a little better place. The honor inside me says that my pain is worth less than someone else's... and even if I feel a hundred times more, if I can help someone in need, be there for someone who wants help coming closer to God, then it's worth it.

And I believe that.

God loves and is hurt far more than I could ever imagine. He knows me and my heart. And, thanks to Him... it'll all be ok.

Sunday, March 5

Broken

When life and work are packed, I can almost pretend that my life is normal. I meet new people, help people smile at work, schedule my day to spend time with family and take time to relax.

But often that's not enough to overcome the feelings that undergird the rest.

I feel like I'm broken.

Specifically, I feel like a real friendship with me, a relationship with me, would never be enough for someone else, unless circumstances 'made' them choose me.

There are exceptions. My best friend is there for me whenever I need him... and while we are both broken, we've both put in effort to make the friendship work. My family is always there for me, and one blessing my siblings have is that we forgive quickly.

But I can't shake the feeling that I'm unique from the rest of my world in an awful, terrifying way. That "I am broken... so the only people who would ever be my close friends are people who are broken. And as soon as they're not broken anymore... they won't be close friends anymore."

Part of me knows that can't be completely true.

And part of me believes it to my core.

I mean, for the vast majority of my life people have come and gone. 

With rare exceptions, people don't usually seek me out to be my friend. The people who do are often searching for something specific that I can give instead of searching for *me* - they want someone who can listen, someone who cares, someone who isn't going to pass judgment or who can give advice. Which means that if I want a real friendship, I often end up being the driving force. For whatever reasons, it's incredibly difficult for others to take that role. And when I stop driving - whether from being busy in life or depression or whatever - it just disappears.

Sometimes it disappears anyway.

...

So maybe I'm broken. And this has nothing to do with being attracted to men. I have autism, bipolar, and a host of other things - and they impact my life whether anyone wants them to or not. Whether or not I am broken, however, life is definitely full of broken dreams and shattered relationships regardless of who I am and what I face.

I guess the question is this:

What am I going to do about it?

...

I could stop hoping. I've pulled myself out from the world emotionally because it hurt too much more times than I can count. The greatest pain comes when people close to me turn away or leave my life... so I could live assuming that no one will ever stay. Life can still be incredibly meaningful when I forget myself and work for others, focusing on making every moment worthwhile. That's usually my go-to.

I could numb. There are thousands of things that could distract me from reality and help me forget. Drugs and alcohol are obviously poor choices... but exercise, food, video games, hobbies, tv and movies, books, social media, and more could serve as distractions.

And then Mikey calls for help and interrupts my reverie. My family cares for an angel who has lived with us for a decade. We don't know what is happening, but the past few days she's been hallucinating worms crawling out of her skin, and bugs coating the floor. I go up to get her and she's having trouble understanding that it's Sunday, and everyone else is at Church. Yes, I may be broken, but there are people who need help far more than I do. And my ward doesn't start for a couple more hours.

I sit and read to her, and the feeling of worthlessness and aloneness fades away. My problems seem so small and insignificant in comparison. 

And then I remember the compact I made with God when I first felt wholly broken, years ago. I was as low as I could get - depressed, suicidal, alone, and disconnected... wanting only to die to make the pain go away. And somehow in that moment, I found God, and He made me a deal: I promised to spend my life reaching outward, serving others, choosing the right, focusing on making the world a better place... and He promised that in His own way, and His own time, He would meet my needs and make me whole.

I guess that's the answer.

Do my best, try to love people, try to make the world a better place, and trust that God will make it all work out.

Likely I'll forget again. Life will seem rough, people will come into my life and disappear out of it, I'll feel incredible pain and loneliness and frustration and feel broken beyond belief.

But, for right now, I see purpose in the life I live. God gave me life so that I can do His will. Perhaps, from my current perspective, I *am* broken. But that's ok.

"And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them."

Sunday, February 19

...Strengthen Thy Brethren

I had a dream years ago that has stayed with me ever since.

I was sitting in my bedroom, and my mom came in. She said, "I know what you're going through... and I know what you've done. But I need to tell you that if you don't change you'll lose your ability to help your little brothers."

Or something like that.

The dream was pretty straightforward - God knew me, knew what I had done (both good and bad), and was warning me that if I didn't shape up I would lose my ability to help other people in the world.

At first I wondered how that would happen. Was God going to spiritually smite me, or take away a talent, or invoke divine punishment on my soul to keep me from being around His children?

No. It was much simpler than that.

If I, myself, was not in tune with God, I would slowly lose my ability to see the needs that others have, lose my ability to see their feelings, and lose my ability to inspire them to come unto Christ.

And when someone really needed help, God would send them to someone else.

Not to me.

My own soul hasn't mattered much to me in the course of my life. Whether it's the feeling of, "I'm broken and halfway-damned already" or a piece of bipolar worthlessness speaking, telling me that *my* soul is in danger of hell isn't new news.

But the souls of others...

Other people matter. And the greatest meaning I have in life is helping other people save their souls.

The thought that I needed to repent so that I could be there for others shook me.

And beginning with the dream years ago and stretching through to now, that's one of the things that has the ability to help me fix my life - to pull out of sin and focus on God - realizing that I need to be better if I want to be able to be there for others.

I've seen both sides of the line. Times when I've made epic mistakes, and both felt unworthy to reach out to others and unable to help anyway. Times when I was able to be there for people and touch their hearts in miraculous ways.

I just want to testify that it's worth it.

Staying true to the gospel - by repenting and coming back - is worth it.

Taking the time to read and study the scriptures is worth it.

Praying to God and trusting Him, even and especially when I don't know what tomorrow and life will bring, is worth it.

It's worth it for me.

But, even more in my book, it's worth it for everyone else.

Perhaps before this life God told me what He could give me to help me help others. Depression so I could understand sadness and sorrow. Loneliness to help me reach out to others. A broken heart to push me to heal those around me. Temptation and darkness to help me share light. It would put me in danger, but if I made it out alive, I'd also be able to help others.

I'm sure I would have said yes in a heartbeat.

Now I just need to make good on the promise I made to Him and to myself.

Monday, January 23

Talk - Jan 22

I spoke in Church this week. It was my first talk to my new single adult ward, and the first I've given in almost 6 years. I thought I'd share. :)

<<<

"And a certain woman, which had an issue of blood twelve years,
And had suffered many things of many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was nothing bettered, but rather grew worse,
When she had heard of Jesus, came in the press behind, and touched his garment.
For she said, 'If I may touch but his clothes, I shall be whole.'"

For twelve years, this woman was tämē (tahmay) - unclean. Mosiac law dictated that she be isolated – both physically and spiritually – from her community. She was unable to attend the temple, participate in social events, or touch anyone, ever. Anything and anyone she touched was unclean, polluted, and defiled.

Which meant that, for twelve years, she was alone.

My name's David Peterson. I just turned 31 and began attending the ward.

And today I want to talk about something we've all experienced – what it feels like to be lost, alone, and unclean... and how we can grow from that experience.

I look like I should fit in. I grew up the oldest of 9 in the suburbs of Chicago, served a mission in Rome, got my undergrad and masters degrees from BYU. After school, I ended up working for the Church, then for a business consulting firm, did some other random stuff, and finally started a natural health company. I currently run a shop in downtown Provo called The Soap Factory.

But while my resume seems full, the reality is that, deep inside me, I often feel completely broken and alone.

On the outside, the certain woman probably looked normal. We know very little about her, except that the trial she faced was hidden from the world. As are mine. I'm autistic, bipolar, and gay.

As an autist, I struggle to connect with people even when they want to. I'm awkward in ways that make it hard for people to get close to me or even approach me.

With bipolar, I face feelings of worthlessness and depression.

And as a gay Mormon... yeah. As a gay Mormon I find myself forced to choose between two exclusive cultures and communities... yet feeling outcast from both.

I'll start with some background. 

My greatest desire in life is to be a husband and a dad. I want to have a big family and teach my kids the gospel and help them work out their own salvation. I know the Church is true, and I've seen the hand of God guiding my life from day to day. I spend my spare time reading articles about parenting, learning about relationships, and improving my ability to connect with others. Everything I do is in preparation for someday being the best dad in the world.

I'm also not attracted to women, at all. I feel a deeper connection with guys. I'd rather talk with guys than girls, hold hands with guys, and spend my life with guys.

In the gay community, guys my age are usually either looking for long-term relationships that turn into marriage or sex... and I'm not interested in either. Most guys in the gay community aren't interested in becoming friends with someone or starting a relationship that won't lead to something more.

In the Mormon community, most people don't understand what it means to be gay. They don't understand that I want guys to hug me, hold my hand, and look into my eyes without looking away. And if they do understand, they definitely don't want it to happen. I've had many guys never speak to me again when they learned I was gay... and plenty of others who avoid touching me for the same reason. The current iteration of the BYU Honor Code actually bans holding hands if you're gay... but not if you're straight.

Both communities are crystal clear on one thing though – if I want to fully participate in their community, and find all the happiness they offer, I have to find love and raise a family.

There's obviously no way for me to be a part of both... and with the issues I face, I would be hard-pressed to be a part of either. Which ultimately means that oftentimes I feel incredibly alone.

All of us here have likely felt the same way. As members of a single adult ward, we don't have as many structures to support us. When we were young, we had Duty to God and Personal Progress as goals and rulers to determine our progress. Eagle Scout and Seminary, then missions and Institute and college. Those who take the marriage track move on to having children, helping them through life, and then ultimately serving missions with a spouse until you die a happy death surrounded by your descendants.

Those who don't take the marriage track get sort of cast off. In other churches, there are orders for monks and nuns who lives single lives. Church leaders in the Catholic church and some others are always single. But, in a somewhat ironic turn of events, single men and women (and especially single men) aren't really accepted in the LDS Church.

It can be easy to think that God has forgotten about us.

But that is where true faith comes in. 

In CS Lewis's The Screwtape Letters, at one point Screwtape speaks to Wormwood (one devil to another) “Our cause is never more in danger than when a human, no longer desiring, but still intending, to do our Enemy's (God's) will, looks round upon a universe from which every trace of Him seems to have vanished, and asks why he has been forsaken, and still obeys.”

True faith can only be forged in the hottest fires... and if we are faithful, God will put us where the fire burns us hottest, then leave us there long enough to burn our souls away. We may feel alone, but He is there, watching, closer than we could ever imagine. And He knows exactly what we need to become the people He sees in us.

And that is what I want you to take away from this talk – no matter what you face, no matter what you've done, no matter how many of your dreams have gone unfulfilled and how many prayers have gone unanswered, turn to God and trust Him. Follow Him. Do what He tells you to do... not because it will bring the blessings you want, when you want them, but because it's the right thing to do. 

Do what is right because it's the right thing to do.

I bear witness that following God is worth it, even when you've lost all hope. It's worth it even if it means going through pain, or sorrow. It's worth it no matter what the alternative.

What does that mean?

Alma taught what this means in Alma 7:23:
"And now I would that ye should be humble, and be submissive and gentle; easy to be entreated; full of patience and long-suffering; being temperate in all things; being diligent in keeping the commandments of God at all times; asking for whatsoever things ye stand in need, both spiritual and temporal; always returning thanks unto God for whatsoever things ye do receive. "

In our lives, it means losing our pride. It means that when we mess up, we need to repent. To go to the bishop and confess our sins even when we're afraid that we'll look bad and might lose our membership and all our friends. It means that we need to cut ties with people who pull us away from the gospel and focus on finding friends who will keep us here. It means being willing to do whatever God wants us to do. It means being grateful for the blessings we do receive, even when we don't get the blessings we want. It means being willing to wait, even when it's really, really hard. It means giving up our anger and frustration and turning them into hope. It means that we need to try to do the right thing even when we don't feel like doing the right thing, when it seems that our emotions, the Spirit, and everything else has failed us and when we have no idea how God will ever keep His promises... and when those promises seem like they will never come true.

All of us are sinners somewhere on the pathway to perfection. We move forward and backward, make progress and sin. I'm a sinner. You are a sinner. But where we are on that path doesn't matter nearly as much as which way we are going.

In our darkest hour, it means that we always need to turn to God. 

It doesn't matter how deep the pit
If I look towards the light
If I imagine sunshine
It breaks the darkest night

It doesn't matter how bright the light
If my face is turned away
In my shadow I cast darkness
And dim the brightest day

Both are always present
The darkness and the light
But I can only turn to one
Just one can be in sight

My resume of doings
My friends and my degree
Will never tell the truth
About the soul inside of me

At the end of life but one foundation
Shapes my day-to-day
Am I facing up to God
Or do I face away?


Oftentimes, in the Church, we talk about promised blessings. We talk a lot about promised blessings... and they become like the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. If we're faithful, someday all of God's promises will come true... and we'll live happily ever after.

Reality is a different story. If we are faithful today, our lives will likely be difficult, painful, and lonely, as they have been in the past. But as we are faithful, we become more like God... and we begin to understand the greatest promised blessing. Happily Ever After is not something we receive. Happily Ever After is something we become... as we become like God.

If I had found my Happily Ever After when I wanted it, my life would be wholly different. I would be different. The circumstances of my life have made me kinder, more loving, more understanding. They pushed me to be friendly, to blog, to start businesses and to be a part of my community in ways I never would have dreamed. I'm grateful that God knew what I needed to find happiness... and had the love and wisdom to withhold the things I thought were right.

My encouragement to each of us is to be as the certain woman – who, after spending her life's savings and pouring out her soul to God, had finally developed the faith to become like Him.

"And a certain woman, which had an issue of blood twelve years,
And had suffered many things of many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was nothing bettered, but rather grew worse,
When she had heard of Jesus, came in the press behind, and touched his garment.
For she said, 'If I may touch but his clothes, I shall be whole.'
...
And he saith unto her, 'Daughter, thy faith hath made thee whole.'"

The miracle of the woman in Jerusalem wasn't physical. It was the spiritual healing – the peace and hope and faith that she had found... that was the miracle. And while God will likely never take away my trials or yours, while we will likely spend a lifetime spurred by unfulfilled desires and dreams and shattered hopes, someday, if we are faithful, we will receive the blessing that we give ourselves – the blessing of true and complete faith in God, becoming Happily Ever After by allowing Him to guide our paths no matter what it is we face.

As we press forward, may we look forward to the day when we, too, will hear the voice of the Lord:

"Thy faith hath made thee whole."

In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

Sunday, December 18

I Fell in Love. With a Guy.

I fell in love.

With a guy.

Yeah. I know. I wasn't ever expecting it to happen either.

But falling in love is crazy.

Looking back I've probably started to fall for a few guys in the past. Maybe almost fallen for 2 or 3, and crushed on a dozen more.

Before you get ideas, the relationship is already over, and it didn't ever go anywhere. I never dated the guy, never wanted to, and the friendship has been dissolved completely. He didn't want anything to do with people who were Mormon or gay, and I'm most definitely both.

But it was an experience that helped me understand the world.

I had never really been in love before. I don't find many guys attractive enough for falling in love to be an option. And if I feel attracted to a guy, I usually avoid him. This time, though, a wave of physical and emotional attraction washed over me and turned into love a whole lot faster than I was expecting. And suddenly every love song made a whole lot more sense than they did before.

In the weeks since I've read that being in love is like being on drugs. Just thinking about love when you're in love floods the brain with chemicals - hence the stereotypical weak knees, fuzzy mind, inability to speak, and general euphoria about life. Being in love can make anything else doable. And that was totally true in my case - just thinking about the guy I loved made life that much brighter, and when I could see him and talk with him, it felt close to a perfect day.

Did he make my world spin? Yeah. My mind was definitely high on dopamine and doses of every other feel-good chemical. I can understand the desire that other gay men have shared with me - to wake up next to a guy I love, to walk down the street hand-in-hand, to watch the sunset and care for each other and grow old together. To come home and have someone who understands and loves me completely back. To go out and together change the world, knowing someone is there at my side.

...

Because I want that as well.

I mean, I've been in love. And anyone who has truly felt love... has felt its mind-numbing effects and realizes how sublime a feeling it really is.

From that perspective, it seems understandable of why the world is so adamant that love should prevail over everything else. And perhaps in a world where physicality and sex were wholly separate, everyone would be able to easily follow the gospel and also find people they love. But in my world where all touch has been sexualized, same-sex sexual activity has gone from illegal and taboo to legal to acceptable to embraced and even expected. I can see why "love vs hate" is an issue. Why every gay guy I meet asks me about my feelings about love, and why so many people oppose any seeming attack on the ability to love and spend life with someone, anyone else.

Love is real.

And it can bring real and honest happiness - enough so that many have chosen love over God. Not because they want to sell their souls to sex... but because, at the core of my human existence, I want to feel connected. I want to love and feel loved.

I believe in love. I've seen it, felt it, been carried away by it.

And yet I choose to trust God. 

Not because I reject love, or fight against it to choose the more noble route of faith. No. My choice is not a sacrificial one. I choose to trust God because I'm not willing to give up love *or* faith. I know that God is real, and I will not deny the feelings of hope and peace and joy that the Gospel has brought my life. I know that love is real, and as uncomfortable as it may make me or others, I won't deny the fact that love, even when I fall in love, is amazing. And I know that, by myself, I could navigate life to follow only one...

...and yet both call deeply to my soul.

No. I choose to believe that, by following God, and His commandments, and only by following Him, I will attain the impossible. To have the best of both worlds... something far more sublime than anything brought by either one alone.

Wednesday, December 14

Four Options Survey

A friend asked me to pass this survey along. It takes about an hour to complete, and is being coordinated by a collaborative group with multiple perspectives... which is to say that some of the researchers are pro-religion and pro-celibacy, and some are deeply against.

I want to ask you, if you have ever experienced same-sex attraction, to take the time to fill out this survey. Traditionally, these types of surveys have had far more openly gay (and anti-religious) respondents than those who are quieter about their lives and faith.

One thing I noticed from the very beginning was the definition the survey uses for celibacy: 

"Celibate means committed to not acting sexually with another person."

By focusing on commitment, the survey looks at the internal, forward-facing, values-based direction of a person, and not their actions. This is a huge distinction, and hopefully one that plays out in the results.

Usually surveys look only at actions, and not at, to use the terminology I love, which way the respondents face. I can sin and then turn back to God, just as easily as I can follow the letter of the law and still be facing away from Him.

By using an internal goals-based definition, this survey makes two interesting distinctions:

1. Someone who intends to eventually be sexually active with the same gender is not celibate, even if he has never been sexually active before.  - This separates those who choose celibacy as a personal commitment, versus those who use it only as a temporary means because of circumstance.

2. Someone who has been sexually active with the same gender and has now made and holds the commitment to not be sexually active again is celibate. - This separates those who have been sexually active and now are committed to celibacy from those who have decided to remain sexually active.

I usually don't forward surveys like this. Could you take the time to fill it out?

http://4optionssurvey.com/

Saturday, November 26

Am I Facing Up To God, or Do I Face Away?

There is more, I think, to authenticity, than being true to who I am instead of who others think I should be. For in my heart of hearts, who am I, but a soul in the midst of an eternal war of whirlwinds and a battle of desires... with battlefields where I am deeply drawn to either side? How then can it be more right to truly follow a deepest desire within me, and thus truly betray the other just as deep?

For what if I, in being true, betray my own divine?

I think, far greater than being true to the warring soul inside, is choosing who I truly wish that soul to be. For without that choice, I may be true to myself, only to find that I am no one at all.

<<<

I've believed that goodness was measured by actions. That by looking at my spiritual and physical resume I could determine if I was on the right path.

The important part, I thought, was the sum total of the things I had done. If I spent time in pornography, I could counter it with service and family and friends. The hidden deceptions of my heart I could expiate by making the world a better place. Every sin had a price that it could be bought, every guilt washed clean through the indulgence of a good deed.

I was wrong.

In the parable of the workers in the vineyard, Christ teaches that the determination of who I am, and not what I have done - and from thence my choice of eternal destination - is only based on one thing:

Which way I face.

It's the only thing that matters. That's the reason that apostles pray for strength in their dying days. Even men who have done miracles in the name of God can turn away from Him. It's the reason that God reaches out to those who sin. Those who have chosen darkness in the past can transform and exchange their lives for the light of Christ.

And I can only choose one.

"No man can serve two masters. For either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will hold to the one and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon."
- Matthew 6:24

If I sin and seek to hide or justify my actions, it doesn't matter how good I appear - if I work at the temple or hold a calling as a bishop or love my children or have made the world a better place - I am turned away from God.

And in the same breath, if I truly want to repent and choose to humbly submit my will to God, it doesn't matter what I've done or the breadth of my accomplishments. I am turned to Him, and His Grace can make me whole.

It takes incredible strength to submit to God. It's easy to take control of my life and to choose the path I take. It takes far more conviction and strength of soul to let Him guide my life and set the course of my faith. Those who submit to God are never weak.

It's my choice.

And, at the end of the day, it's the only choice that matters.


It doesn't matter how deep the pit
If I look towards the light
If I imagine sunshine
It breaks the darkest night

It doesn't matter how bright the light
If my face is turned away
In my shadow I cast darkness
And dim the brightest day

Both are always present
The darkness and the light
But I can only turn to one
Just one can be in sight

My resume of doings
My friends and my degree
Will never tell the truth
About the soul inside of me

At the end of life but one foundation
Shapes my day-to-day
Am I facing up to God
Or do I face away?