Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Women and the Priesthood

As mentioned previously, I am not compatible with contention.  I am a mess when I attempt to deal with conflict or disagreement.  With that in mind, please know this subject is very difficult for me to write about.  The back skin of my neck is literally burning as I type this knowing I was not built for debating or arguing and am very sensitive about posting this at all.  My goal is not to offend anyone who disagrees or spark any heated discussions.  This is for me.  I need to pour out my heart and walk away knowing I had the courage to stand up for something important to me.

I have felt inundated with recent Mormon blog posts and articles with a patterned theme addressing the roles of men and women in the priesthood.  As I'm sure most are aware, there are plans of protesting outside of the priesthood session of General Conference requesting priesthood ordination for women.

Any questions regarding what the priesthood is can be studied on the lds.org website here.

I feel like everyone who believes in the gospel needs to have a moment of weakness, a subject or area that is challenging to grasp, to give each of us the opportunity to completely rely on our faith.  If gaining a testimony of the gospel was always as simple as two plus two equaling four, where is the opportunity to exercise our agency?  Why wouldn't our Heavenly Father leave a variable out of the equation and give us the chance to solve the algebra ourselves so we can grow?

Whether it's understanding why women in the church don't hold the priesthood or any other question that may feel unsettling in your heart, we can all follow the prophet, Joseph Smith's, example.


"If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him."
-James 1:5

Any restless question we have can be answered through personal revelation.  Whenever I prayerfully study with an open heart of faith to find an answer, it is amazing the amount of peace and understanding that accompanies the information I later receive.

So here it is... My conclusions and personal beliefs after personal study to come to a better understanding about why women do not hold the priesthood in the church:

"Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife and they shall be one flesh."
-Genesis 2:24

I think about my marriage with Mitchell.  We are very, very different.  
I'm a worry wart, Mitch is a dare devil.  
I can clutter the house, Mitch has O.C.D.  
I can sit and focus on one thing for a long period of time, Mitch is a squirrel.
(Like when we sit in a Disney illustration class and Mitch gives up almost immediately and turns his paper over so he can draw a horse instead)


It's hilarious, but it is also extremely beautiful how we balance each other out.  There is a feeling of "wholeness" how we are able to take the good in each other and mold together into a grander creation.

I think of it like a chemical reaction when we each bring our unique qualities to the table.  Like a beautiful sparkling firework!  The combination of chemicals and metals create the magic of the loud bangs, colors, and twinkles that trickle down out of the sky (and yes, I did learn that from Bill Nye the Science Guy).

There is balance involved in Mitchell being the priesthood holder in our family.  I come to him often asking for priesthood blessings of comfort and I believe my reliance on him being worthy to hold the priesthood strengthens and motivates him.  The priesthood allows us to work together to lift up one another.

"Nevertheless, neither is the man without the woman, neither is the woman without the man, in the Lord."
-1st Corinthians 11:11

I fear too often today women have the desire to be everything!  The full-time mom and the successful business woman.  The divine motherhood nurturer and the presiding priesthood holder?  We weren't meant to do everything.  The Lord WANTS us to have to rely on each other.


I'd like to share one more scripture.  And I may be interpreting it wrong.  I'm not the smartest...

"For I have conferred upon you the keys and power of the priesthood, wherein I restore all things, and make known unto you all things in due time."
D&C 132:45

That last phrase really stood out to me.  It's an answer I have received many times before in my own personal questions I've wrestled with the Lord.  I interpreted this as, "Someday this will make sense to you, but not yet."  I know from my personal experiences better than to question God's timing or to trust what I know over the Lord's flawless understanding.

I have been educated countless times where I have lacked faith or patience and have later had to humbly accept His big, fat "I-told-you-so" now obvious reasons why He was right all along.  Never again.  The Lord has his motives and that's good enough for me.

I understand that everyone is different and needs to discover these intimate reflections on religious matters on their own.  But here was my journey and if it in anyway is able to help inspire others to discover for themselves, then I guess it's okay that I chose to post this.

Oh, I'm so grateful for everything in my life.  For every experience and every spiritual opportunity I'm given to attempt to grow closer to the Savior.


"Sisters, I testify that when you stand in front of your heavenly parents in those royal courts on high and look into Her eyes and behold Her countenance, any question you ever had about the role of women in the kingdom will evaporate into the rich celestial air, because at that moment you will see standing directly in front of you, your divine nature and destiny"

10 comments:

  1. Beautiful! Loved your explanation!

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  2. That was awesome! Thanks for the great post!

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  3. This is just wonderful. Thank you.

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  4. Jesse, I love your insight and understanding. Thanks for sharing.

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  5. Nicely said. Good job.

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  6. Thank you for your courage in posting this.

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  7. Came across you through pinterest. :) Thank you for having courage-- you wrote beautifully, and I feel enriched from reading your testimony, to which I give a big AMEN. I hope that the women who are struggling with this issue can gain personal testimonies of our divine nature as women.
    Thank you for writing about this in such a peaceful way.

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  8. my thoughts exactly. thanks for your post!

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  9. I love your thoughts on this topic! We women are smart enough, strong enough and capable enough--but that isn't what this is about. Men and women together with their unique roles bring balance--I love all that you said. Thank you!

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