Ever feel beaten down by life? Ever been betrayed? Wounded? Bitter? We’ve all been there. I have a new book called MAKE A CHOICE features 7 short stories about ordinary people who fought through extraordinary hardship to find happiness.
A few days ago the Victoria’s Secret Swim 2016 catalog arrived in our mailbox. At first I thought we had received an advance copy of this year’s Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue. In other words, the swimsuit models aren’t wearing swimsuits. There’s a topless model drinking from a coconut; a super close-up of a thong-clad butt with sand stuck to it; and one model removing her “Teeny Bikini” bottom while another hikes her “Ruffle Itsy” up, up, up. You get the picture.
This post is about John Lennon, guns, and my 19-year-old son’s decision NOT to go on a Mormon mission.
This month is the 35th anniversary of John Lennon’s death. I remember where I was when I got the news – lying on the couch around 11:30 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 8, 1980. I was 14 and normally would have been in bed. But my parents had let me stay up to watch my favorite team – the Miami Dolphins – play the Patriots on Monday Night Football.
The last time I wrote a blog post I was in route to San Francisco to speak to a gathering of gay and lesbian Mormons. The event -- known in Mormon parlance as a “fireside” – was organized by bishop Jeff Wise, whose teenage son recently came out as gay. After an opening prayer, Stanford graduate student Jon Arnell, who is gay, sung “Broken Together,” a song by Casting Crowns that begins with these lyrics: “What do you think about when you look at me?”
Today I’m flying to San Francisco to speak to gay and lesbian Mormons in the Bay Area. The gathering will be Sunday night at a chapel in Menlo Park. Here’s a link to the invitation: LINK
I give a lot of speeches to a wide variety of audiences around the U.S. Rarely do I spend as much time preparing as I’ve spent for this one. I’ve talked with many gay Mormons and their respective family members about their experiences. I’ve talked with Mormon clergy from around the country, and in one instance I even drove all the way to Connecticut to speak to face-to-face with one whose personal views and experiences on this topic I value above all others. He told me that this is “the defining issue for our faith in our day,” and he encouraged me above all else to leave our gay brothers and sisters with a message of “hope, love, and encouragement.”