Why Michael McLean's Songs Make Me Nuts
I happened to be called into the Bishop’s office the day after I found out I was pregnant. Ironically enough, it was to give me a calling to be the Primary pianist. I had the weird experience of shocking the hell out of the bishop by telling him that I was pregnant before accepting my musical calling with the children. I did, however, have to give up the “calling” that I had with the youth dances. While I TOTALLY understand why I was not the best person for that job, I also wished that this bishop would have actually TOLD me about that instead of the Young Women’s leader asking my mom why the bishop had told her that I could no longer do the job and to find someone else and me finding out that way.
Looking back, it seems that I was one of, if not the first, teen pregnancies that this particular bishop had dealt with. He called me and Hubby back into his office to help “counsel” us with our choices. The main thing I remember was the wonderfully acted, not cheesy at all, church videos telling two different stories of teenage pregnancies. One who was able to work things out and start a life with the baby’s father and keep the baby and the other girl that chose to give the baby up for adoption with Michael McLean’s “From God’s Arms, to My Arms, to Yours” playing in the background. I can safely say that these videos DID NOT help me in my struggles and decisions, but I could understand how they might help…the bishop. I continued to feel scared, awkward, unsure, scared, like a sinner who should be wearing the scarlet letter and scared. While his intentions were good, the “counsel” the bishop provided just didn’t apply to me, I felt. Like I had just been given a “text book” answer and that was supposed to be good enough. But was it?
I think the answer to that question for each of us, in any touchy situation is never an easy one. It took me a long time to realize that the answers I needed were right with me all along. The Priesthood leaders are yes, there to lead. But they are not there to tell you what to do (even though some do try) and tell you how your life should be and they are certainly not perfect. I’m sure that due to my “leave of absence” from the church for the past eight years that I view church leadership a lot different. Not negatively, just differently. Each person has to rely on their faith to get the answers they need. That faith may or may not lead you to following the direction from Priesthood leaders…but that is the beauty of free agency. I think that is where the true test begins.