The 13th Article of Faith is quite long so I’m going to explain it over several posts. The beginning states, “We believe in being honest, true, chaste . . . .”
Honesty encompasses many aspects from telling the truth to keeping vows and covenants to sins of omission. Being honest establishes trust. Dishonesty breaks that trust. Many years ago, a woman in my ward approached me and asked if her daughter could do some service for me since I was a young mother. She suggested that her daughter could babysit each week while I ran errands.
I allowed the young woman to babysit and I used the time to go grocery shopping and do other errands. After a few weeks, I noticed that a bottle of my perfume was missing. I figured one of my kids had moved it somewhere. The next week, I noticed that my walkman was gone. Again, I figured my kids were the culprits and I’d find it eventually. After I returned home the third week, I discovered that my bathing suit had disappeared. It finally hit me. My babysitter had been stealing from me. I was shocked, but promptly ended her service and never again allowed her to babysit. She lost my trust.
Some years back, members of my community started a rumor about me. The rumor had no basis and since I tend to confront issues head-on, I went to the sources of the rumor. Of course, the people denied any involvement, but I knew without any doubt, that not only had they been involved, but were in fact lying to me at that time as well. They lost my trust.
Honesty is the basis of trust. Once that trust has been destroyed, it’s very difficult to rebuild it. We must be honest in all of our dealings. If we’ve been dishonest, we should rectify the situation as best we can as soon as we can, but understand that it may take a long time to re-establish trust.
We must also be true to our covenants and vows. We must be true to our word. When we say we are going to do something, we need to do it. We must be true to our family and friends so that they know they can always depend on us and trust us.
The Lord delights in the chastity of women. Our society has denigrated to the point that chastity is no longer respected and in many instances is ridiculed. When I was in high school, an adult in a position of trust constantly belittled my desire to remain chaste. He told me that I was missing out on life by being such a prude. He said life was meant to be experienced and I was limiting my experiences. As I look back now, I’m so grateful I did not give in or listen to this individual because the decision that I made to be chaste before marriage has brought me great comfort.
Adherence to the Law of Chastity provides physical and spiritual protection that is so important today. Our society calls for sex education in our schools to teach our youth to be “safe.” What this education fails to teach the youth is the damage that premarital sex does to their spirits. The ability to create human life is sacred and belongs only within the bounds of marriage. When this procreative power is used under any other circumstance besides between husband and wife, catastrophic results occur. One only needs to look at the broken homes, teenagers having babies, rate of abortion, drug use, alcohol use, and divorce rate to see the effects of a society that promotes immoral behavior.
One of the greatest ills of our society today is its lack of respect for the proper place for sexual relationships. Our society’s disrespect for the sacred power of procreation will eventually lead to its downfall.
Return to the neighborhood.