Posts Tagged ‘mormon’

Apr
16
2017

Belief


I believe anything is possible.

I believe in so many things I’ve never seen and I have so much hope. Hope for the world, our future, and hope that someday it’ll all make sense. Hope that eventually there will be peace.

Maybe that’s why it’s not so hard for me to believe in the resurrection of Jesus Christ, and the belief that we will all live again too. Today my family is celebrating this belief on a day we call Easter.

I teach a class of 16 and 17 year olds and I often ask them how they’ve been a missionary and if they’ve shared some of their beliefs with their friends. I felt it was time I asked myself the same question.

I’m a Mormon. I don’t grasp everything about the religion. Actually, there’s a lot I don’t quite get, but I’m always trying to understand, learn more, and do better. We believe in a Jesus Christ and celebrate Easter.

I love learning about people who are different than me. Specifically those who practice different religions. It is fascinating learning what really inspires someone. I believe listening and getting to know people who are different from ourselves is a big part of becoming more compassionate and accepting of others. I believe fear holds us back. The simple act of asking a question, or reaching out can help us overcome that fear.

I’m only an email or comment away if you have any questions or want to share your own beliefs with me! And if you want to learn more about my religion from a better resource than myself, check out this website.

Another part I love about this day? An excuse to get my kids all dappered up for photos!

Happy Easter!

Dressed up all dapper for Easter 2017.

Interracial Family Easter photo for 2017. Sharing my beliefs.

Interracial Family Easter photo for 2017. Sharing my beliefs.

Interracial Family Easter photo for 2017. Sharing my beliefs.

Interracial Family Easter photo for 2017. Sharing my beliefs.

Interracial Family Easter photo for 2017. Sharing my beliefs.

Interracial Family Easter photo for 2017. Sharing my beliefs.

Interracial Family Easter photo for 2017. Sharing my beliefs.

Interracial Family Easter photo for 2017. Sharing my beliefs.

Interracial Family Easter photo for 2017. Sharing my beliefs.

Interracial Family Easter photo for 2017. Sharing my beliefs.

(Poor Lil’ J saw a bee right before this photo and was still scared half to death. 3/4 of us look good though so it counts as a win.)

Interracial Family Easter photo for 2017. Sharing my beliefs.

 

I love learning about people who are different than me. Specifically, those who practice different religions.

I know a lot of people who say they like Donald Trump because “he says it like it is” he’s not afraid of not being “politically correct” or offending anyone. So I’m hoping the same people who feel that way won’t take offense to what I’m about to say. This is coming from a place of love and a yearning to help facilitate understanding and maybe start a dialogue.

I normally find myself positioned right smack in the middle of a lot of divisive topics. Being a woman, a black woman… A black woman who happens to be Mormon (I’m like Obama, Hillary and Romney wrapped into one)–and members of my religion typically have extremely conservative social opinions. I lived in Utah for four years but before that I was raised in the south (Georgia). There I was called a nigger umm… Several times. And now living in Texas (though thankfully Austin–It could be worse) I still hear the word flying around now and then in unexpected places. Oh, and on top of all that I’m married to a white cop. Needless to say, I’ve definitely had quite the mix of friends and lived in and experienced diverse communities.

our-family

I’ve learned to listen, see, and try to understand different viewpoints. I can understand why my religious friends are so passionately anti-abortion. I can understand why my gay friends are hurt when others speak out against their marriage. Interracial marriages only became legal in all 50 states less than 50 years ago (and my church has disapproved in even more recent history). There are a lot of people still alive on this earth today who feel my marriage is wrong so yea–Solidarity.

All of that said. I know I still have a lot of work to do. I’m not perfect and I still have a lot of understanding to gain. But the one thing I will never ever understand.–The one thing I will never ever support is hate.

We all know racism is bad.

We being you and I. If you are a regular visitor to my blog I know we at least agree on that. I also think it’s pretty bad to call someone a racist just because they don’t agree with you. That said, there are other things you can say or do to set off my racist red alert.

I’ve had several conversations with friends over the last couple of days that have the thesis of “I voted for Trump but I’m not a racist, a bigot or a homophobe.”

I can understand why people are on the defense because there are a lot of harsh words and ugly memes going around right now. Maybe you scroll through your newsfeed and see something about Trump voters being bigots and think “but that’s not me!” To that I say calm down. Take a deep breath and don’t take it personally (unless someone is directly calling you out, but I’ll get to that in a moment).

As my husband blocks traffic so protestors can safely march in solidarity against Trump in the middle of the roadway, many yell and call him a racist cop. We laugh about that.

I know some of you are looking at me and saying: “No Jennifer, I mean I had someone I thought was a friend flat out call me a racist because I voted for Trump!”

Ok, well sometimes that happens too. But may I ask what conversations happened before it escalated to this point? Were you defending Trump and his remarks about minorities? Do you think what he said was wrong? Do you even care? When you were explaining the reasons why you voted for Trump did you fail to mention your distaste for his generalizing Mexicans as rapists and drug dealers? Of course you don’t owe your explanation to anyone, I’m just trying to help explain why your apathetic attitude may come across as acceptance, and why acceptance of this is not ok.

How do you feel about the racism that’s erupting after this election?

No, I’m not talking about the peaceful protests that are a protected by the constitution. No, I’m not even talking about the riots–Though I imagine you’re well aware of those. I’m talking about the middle school kids who are chanting “Build that wall” in the cafeteria around their Latino classmates who are in tears. I’m talking about racial slurs being written on black people’s cars. I’m talking about minorities being threatened by white people in the name of “yea we won!” I’m talking about the KKK planning a celebratory gathering. I’m talking about some of these terrible things that happened the day after Trump was elected president.

Did you not know about this? If not, that’s part of the problem. See, for minorities–For me, this really isn’t anything new. I am well aware that racism is alive and well today. We live it. If you haven’t noticed you probably aren’t paying attention. But when I read about these incidents and I don’t see my friends who say they voted for him saying that’s wrong, I wonder if they think that’s right. Why share sarcastic memes about violent protestors but nothing about the violent hate crimes?

Forgive me if I seem to be overreacting but these are serious emotional triggers for me. And it doesn’t seem logical, but now when I walk to the mailbox with my kids my pulse quickens when a lifted pickup truck passes by. These are serious issues facing people right now. Issues I think about just existing as a family. And I don’t even wear a hijab or run the risk of having family being deported. I imagine it must feel even worse for my Muslim and Mexican friends.

Unfortunately, electing someone despite their very outspokenly skewed views of Muslims, Mexicans, Latinos, Blacks, people with disabilities and let’s not forget women, can lead some people to believe that way of thinking is acceptable.

This is the reason I worry.

Not just about possibly of discriminatory policies that may be coming in the future, but because of the hateful actions from those very happy about the election results. Because racist people now think it’s ok to come out of hiding and say what they really think.

I know you don’t want to be associated with that crowd. I don’t want you to either. To agree with Trump politically is one thing, but when you don’t stand against the racist things that are coming from this, or the hurtful things he said himself, then I’m left wondering if you agree with them.

So if you say you are not racist, that you do not agree with the things Trump has said about minorities or Muslims. Say it! Take a stand. Stand up to racism. Don’t allow it, don’t condone it, speak against it. I know it’s scary, I know it’s probably outside of your comfort level and the type of things you normally talk about, but we can’t do it alone. We need you to help bridge the divide.

To help stand up for what’s right.

For me… Just having someone acknowledge my feelings goes a long way. I have two friends who have recently reached out to me and said how they look at the world differently. How when they’re out and see people donning confederate flags they wonder how that encounter might go if they were Black. Just that acknowledgement of “Hey, racism sucks, I’m sorry you have to deal with this,” goes a long way… for me at least. I guess I’m easy to please.

So may I suggest we use this awkward period after an election where we’re giving our friends and relatives the side eye to also learn a little more about each other?

Look around at your circle of friends. How diverse are they? Do you have friends who voted for the other guy (or gal)? Do you have friends who practice different religions? Friends of different races? Do you have gay friends? If all of your friends look and/or think like you do, it may be time to ask yourself why, and consider how your homogenous circle could affect your views of the world.

I’m not going to call you a racist because you voted for Trump. But your actions now will speak much louder than your vote.

This is what it's like to raise a multiracial family in a post-Trump era. #

My daughter came to me dressed from head to toe. Two hair bows in her hair, necklaces draped around her neck, a flowery dress and pink Mary Jane’s on her feet.

“Don’t I look beautiful?” She asked me.
“Absolutely!” I beamed.
“One more thing!” She said as she skipped away.

She came back carrying a box if nail polish.

“Will you paint my nails?”

I smiled and sat down with her as she picked out several colors.

Mother daughter Mormon discussion about compassion

My eyes watered as I looked at my daughter, completely innocent, utterly beautiful inside and out. And my gut wrenched as I imaged how it would feel if things were different and she couldn’t join the church I grew to love. How long it would take for the world around her to take hold and violate her Christ-like innocence and compassion?

“What would you do if you heard someone on the playground calling someone else ugly?” I asked her as I twisted open the first bottle of nail polish.

“STOP THAT!” She said in a disturbed voice, responding to my question. “That’s not nice!”

“What if someone said ‘blue is the best color ever, not pink!’”? I asked her.

She thought about this for a moment seeming to think how she’d respond.

“I would say ‘Every color is the best color,’” she started. “‘And none of them are the best colors. But pink is one of my favorites. So it doesn’t matter which color you like, all of them are the best, but you get to choose which one is your favorite.’”

I stared at her, tearing up again at the wisdom coming from my 5-year-old. She was smiling back at me, with confidence and pride. And she continued giving me instructions on how she’d like her nails painted.

Mother daughter Mormon discussion about compassion

“You can keep asking me questions,” she said. This “what if” game is one of her favorites.

So I pushed on, knowing where we were headed and where we were going next.

“What if someone told you it was weird that your parents didn’t match because my skin is brown and you daddy’s skin is white?” I asked. We’ve been down this road before, we’ve discussed the Loving Family, and segregation and how people’s views have changed over the years. So I wasn’t entirely surprised by her response, except the first part.

“Daddy is blond,” she corrected me.

“Um, ok, blond. But that’s usually describing hair color.”

“‘It doesn’t matter if you have different skin colors,’” She continued, ignoring my response. “I have brown skin and my mom has dark brown skin. And my brother has brown skin. My dad has blond skin. We all love each other. And we can still be friends even if your skin is orange.”

Now I was beaming. But I had one more question.

Our church has recently added a policy so that children of gay parents who are married or live together can not be baptized until they’re adults. The reasoning expressed was that they “don’t want the child to have to deal with issues that might arise where the parents feel one way and the expectations of the church are very different.” And also so that those children are “not placed in a position where there will be difficulties, challenges, conflicts that can injure their development in very tender years.”

This made me wonder, exactly what are we are saying and teaching our kids at church that could injure children in this situation to the point that they would be better better off not coming, or rather– not being baptized until they’re adults, even if their parents are ok with it?

Did my daughter already believe that children coming from same-sex households were bad people? Less-than? Evil? Couldn’t these teachings potentially harm her development as well? Should she also wait longer to make a decision about baptism?

These harsh words aren’t what I’ve been taught (though I became active in the church after primary years) or believed and I didn’t even imagine this would be something that would come up at church before she turned 8, or a reason to withhold these blessings from innocent children.

My son and daughter have been to two weddings in their lifetime. One with a man and a woman, and one with two men. I thought of this as I braced myself to ask my little girl one last question.

“What if one of your friends had two daddies and someone else said that was weird?”

“I’d say ‘That’s not nice! It’s not weird. It’s ok because they like their family. I have one mommy and one daddy. And I have like, 10 grandmas and grandpas. And daddy has A LOT of cousins. Some families look different.”

That’s my girl. I thought.

Mother daughter Mormon discussion about compassion

This is just the start of a lot of questions I’ll be asking myself, my family, and most importantly, my Heavenly Father as I try to mend the part of me who feels my greatest divine quality is my ability to find commonalities, the bright side, and have compassion, accept, love, teach, share, and spread the gospel with so many; to a policy that just doesn’t feel right. I don’t doubt my questions ok. Questions are good. I still believe a question from a 14-year-old boy is what started this all.

My daughter’s nails were finished. A beautiful rainbow. She smiled at our job well done. And so did I.

I an truly thankful for the power of prayer. Whether for comfort, guidance, forgiveness, or assistance; prayer is something I can’t live without. I can physically feel a difference in my life when I’m praying constantly, or when I’m lacking, and the more I pray, the closer I feel to my Father in Heaven, and the clearer everything seems.Toddler and baby prayingI’m trying to teach my children about its power and blessing. My prayers are answered constantly, and I am grateful to have that speed-dial connection with Him.

Hi! I’m Jennifer Borget



I'm a part-time journalist, full-time wife and mother striving to make the world a better place and inspiring others to do the same. This is the space where I share my journey in making the most of every day.

My Photography Course

My Photography Course

Featured Posts

diy-onsie-cardigan-tutorial

adventures-in-homeschooling

30-things-my-kids-should-know-about-me

Aurora-tutu-dress-tutorial-3

kid-movie-reviews

disney-family-travel

photo-backup-tutorial


Find me on Google Plus


watch @jenniferborget on

Inspiring Moments Positive Parenting Spreading Joy
This is What Makes ‘Vacationing’ with Kids Worth It
Rachel Lindsay Dishes Some Salty Bitter Chocolate: The Bachelorette Season 13 Finale Recap
The bachelorette season 13 episode 9 recap
I am Officially Team #RachelNeedsADoOver: Bachelorette Season 13 Episode 9 Recap
Family Travel Food & Culture Homeschooling
This is What Makes ‘Vacationing’ with Kids Worth It
10 Fun First Day of Homeschool Traditions to Kick Your Year Off Right
How to Get the Most Out of a Summer Vacation
Creating With Kids (DIY) Disney Motherhood Pregnancy & Baby
Potty training on the go. Tips for potty training a kid while on the road.
5 Ways to Survive Potty Training on the Go
Potty training tips
Reader Roundup: Here are the Best Potty Training Tips Revealed
Letter to my daughter- Mommy and me self-portraits in Disney Leggings LulaRoe
And Then She Was 7: This is a Love Letter to My Curious Girl
Interracial Marriage Multiracial Parenting Our Family History Photography & Videos
Biracial hair washing FAQs and a tutorial
10 Curly Hair FAQs and My New Favorite Wash-Day Hair Products
Choosing your next camera lens. How to choose your next camera lens.
Which Camera Lens? A Breakdown of the Best Lenses for Your Needs & a Lens Giveaway
Get Out of Auto: 5 Valuable Modes That Will Help Your Photography