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Showing content with the highest reputation since 02/22/19 in all areas

  1. 15 points

    The LGBT stumbling block.

    The problem is that our culture is drifting toward the idea that the only way to show compassion and love toward someone is to support every single thing they do. "Love the sinner, hate the sin" is an idea that people are forgetting in alarming numbers. What makes it worse in the case of LGBT issues is that instead of someone's sexuality being an aspect of their personality, it's treated as the core of their being... so if you disapprove of homosexual behavior, our culture interprets that as hating the person himself/herself. "It's who I AM!!!!" It's a completely illogical notion, but one that has taken in a LOT of people.
  2. 13 points
  3. 9 points
    I just read the article, and I think the author's motives are pure. It really doesn't matter if we think the GC's advice was helpful or not. The fact of the matter is, she didn't and it upset her. But rather than dwell on it, leave her mission early, and ask to be removed from the records of the church as some do, she learned to not only forgive the GC and let it go, but a valuable lesson about staying true to our faith no matter who offends us. She came out of the experience strengthed, and I think the article does a good job of saying, sometimes you are going to be upset by what a church leader tells you. So what? Your relationship with Christ is more important, and you should be loving of and forgiving towards our leaders, who are trying to do the same. Seems like a valuable lesson to me .
  4. 8 points

    Why do so many fail to find God?

    How does one find God? Whoever looks will find. One can look in the Torah, the New Testament, the Quran, and even the Book of Mormon, and find God promising He will reveal Himself to anyone who seeks Him. It is not so easy, though. We want, so very much, to make our own way—apart from any higher power. You hear this desire all the time. When one says, “God judges the heart,” s/he really means they want to be left to their own devices. Even in churches we hear, “The rules can’t save you—only the Rule Giver.” Well, sure. However, if the Rule Giver saves me will He not give me rules? We fail to trust in God because we want so much to trust in ourselves. What folly! Mao and his communist party tried to create a new socialist man and saw 50 million Chinese starve. He considered these deaths acceptable collateral damage. Godless nobility gives death. Another dangerous road away from God is the search for the good within. China, the Soviet Union and North Korea, in their quest for godless goodness incarcerated people of faith. Stalin’s Russia even used psychiatric hospitals to try to cure Christians of their apparent mental disorders. Inside the church, there are voices suggesting that doctrine—teaching—is not important. A growing church in Los Angeles became famous for helping the poor and for being interracial in the 1970s. Even city government sought out its church leaders, due to their positive works. Yet, behind the church doors the pastor was engaging in fake healings, teaching that humans could be gods, and he was allowing church beatings in the name of discipline. The church was the People’s Temple, and the pastor was Jim Jones. By 1979 the church relocated to Guyana, and over 900 members lie dead, from mass suicide. We must return to our faith in the one good God. In creation God sees his goodness repeatedly. After the great flood wipes out wickedness, God’s man, Noah, declares God’s goodness by building an altar to him. God’s nation, Israel, often declared en masse that he is good and loving. Jesus’ resurrection showed God’s goodness. Paul says that without resurrection we are pathetic, but with it we are most blessed! Finally, even the opponents of God will ultimately declare God’s goodness. The Bible says every knee will bow and confess that Jesus is Lord. God is good—but all the time? Every week I join female prisoners in worship. They flock to Christian chapel. Statistics suggest that 90% of them have been sexually molested. Nevertheless, they come, declaring that life may be hard, but God will get them through. So many who faced bad times, but continued to declare God’s goodness! Despite testimonies to God’s goodness, we gravitate towards our own efforts. Sadly, even when we find the right answers, we usually cannot carry them out. Consider that Unicor, also known as Federal Prison Industries, has a tremendous record for successfully rehabilitating prisoners, so they can return to society and get legal, productive jobs. Nevertheless, the program flounders because local factories want the jobs that Unicor does. So, we know a program that works well, but we do not have the political will to enact it on a large scale. We cannot solve our own problems. Good intentions are not enough. What can we do? We must have right belief: That God is good; that God is one; that Jesus is our only way to the Father; that any good we do must be grounded in God; and that God is love. Is it really that simple? Sure! However, to know Jesus is to love Him. To love Jesus is to serve Him. Will you give up your independent efforts at goodness? Will you trust God to lead you in His way of righteousness? To see a video presentation of this message visit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jx5S904diRI
  5. 7 points

    The LGBT stumbling block.

    I agree with all these, but in my mind they miss the central mark. The sexual act is the combining of two people to be "one flesh". It is a merging not only of bodies but of spirits. This must only occur within the bonds of marriage, and must only happen between the two fundamental types of people: male and female. Life itself is the result of such a union. If sexual intercourse is not holy, nothing is. (Which is precisely why we see so many today for whom nothing is holy.) The act of sexual intercourse between individuals of the same sex is, of course, a mockery of sex, and thus a mockery of something intrinsically holy. But God is not mocked. The sexual power we have been granted in mortality, miraculous as it is, is but a shadow and a prefigurement of the power wielded by the exalted. It is a sign not only of the wickedness of our times but of the willful ignorance of our peoples that homosexual relations are widely accepted and celebrated, to the point of mocking marriage itself. Not even the ancient Greeks, unabashed homosexual pederasts that they were, made a marital relationship of homosexual interactions. Even they understood that marriage is something different from a sexual license or a mere social contract, but rather is the fundamental unit upon which society is built, the formalization of the very union of the sexes. How we as a society can have lost sight of this, I don't understand, but I strongly suspect it has to do with selfishness and willful blindness. But of course, gravity doesn't stop working just because we say it doesn't, or even pass a law against recognizing gravity. As we step over this cliff edge and celebrate our new-found "freedom", it is only a matter of time until we hit ground.
  6. 7 points

    BYU police decertified?

    Knowing nothing at all but this, it sounds like decertification is a reasonable if extreme step. Certified police, able to arrest and have all other policing powers, cannot truly be private. BYU may pay their salaries, but they still have to do all the regular police stuff. Open records is a vitally important part of that. But note the caveat of my first six words. Wherever the Salt Lake Tribune is involved, you may be almost certain that corruption and hatred of the Church closely follow. So it well may not be as cut-and-dried as it seems at first glance. Or maybe it is; BYU certainly may have just screwed up this whole situation. Wouldn't be the first time. BYU was fully within its rights to kick Barney the heck out of school; I have very little sympathy for her, being as she is a liar and then an advocate for hating on the institution she defrauded. But refusing to comply with an open-records request? I just don't even understand that. Maybe JAG or Mirk or someone else with legal understanding can enlighten us.
  7. 6 points
    This is just amazing. https://www.deseretnews.com/article/900059369/entire-first-presidency-quorum-of-the-twelve-to-attend-rome-temple-dedication-mormon.html The last time this occured was at the Nauvoo Dedication in 2002 and before that at the LA Temple Dedication in 1956. Very historic times for the Church.
  8. 6 points

    The LGBT stumbling block.

    Gays are allowed to marry in the temple right now. They can't "marry" someone of the same sex, of course, since that's an oxymoron.
  9. 6 points

    The LGBT stumbling block.

    If this were true, why would God have waited at least 6000 years before teaching that it is a morally and spiritually acceptable path? Moreover, why did He give prophets past instruction indicating, "Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination."? Or, "If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them."?
  10. 6 points

    The LGBT stumbling block.

    This is how i reconcile it: https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2009/10/love-and-law?lang=eng
  11. 6 points

    The LGBT stumbling block.

    If somebody's ready to leave the Church over the issue, they're essentially putting the moral cues of society over those of the Church and calling it "acceptance." It's unclear to me why a culture that values self gratification over self control is somehow the premier guide to morality these days.
  12. 6 points
    If the author was truly experiencing Clinical Depression, then there is no worse or more useless reply than "buck up and get over it." That really is damaging, because a person who is struggling with CD (and I'm not just talking about being in a blue funk because it's hard to adjust to mission life. I'm talking about actual, diagnosable Depression) then they're already struggling with a variety of difficult emotions, not the least of which being "this is my fault." So the reply of "get over it" just reinforces that idea, no matter how delicately or diplomatically it's phrased. I think in this case what went wrong was that the author (by her own acknowledgement) had expectations of this leader that weren't reasonable. It sounds like she expected that this reply would be a sort of magical elixir that would just make the problems go away, but that isn't how CD works. To be fair to the leader, unless he had a background in mental health, it isn't likely that he would have recognized the symptoms for what they were, especially if the author herself didn't realize it was at a clinical level. This is just one of those situations where nobody was being mean or insensitive, it's just that nobody had all the information they needed to deal with the situation better.
  13. 6 points
    SCOTUS' decision will likely effect this monument too: Erasing these monuments is not a matter of upholding separation of church and state, but rather of fostering a historic revisionist lie--the idea that religious faith and liberty had no part in our country's founding and values. If they succeed in destroying our foundation will they be surprised when they cannot rebuild atop the rubble?
  14. 6 points


    I always get crew-neck garments, but I thought the men’s nylon-mesh garments were basically a scoop neck front and back? At any rate: the notion that the garment exists to promote modesty is a sort of latter-day midrash (although, granted, one with some patina of prophetic authority). That is not the garment’s raison d’être as given within the temple ceremony itself. It maybe worth noting that the garment as originally revealed extended to the wrist, ankles, and neck for both sexes. The fact that the design has changed at all suggests that “modesty”, if indeed it is part of the impetus for the garment, is somewhat subjective.
  15. 5 points
    Your girlfriend is acting like a fretful mother. That's not a bad thing, that's actually a good thing. Not every mommy has these obsessive urges to do everything right. But it is still important to know what's true and what isn't. If nobody has given you guys these books, go get them and start reading them.
  16. 5 points
    The Folk Prophet

    The LGBT stumbling block.

    No it isn't. It's a lie they're telling themselves or others to justify something pleasing to the carnal mind. The stumbling block is, as it has always been, things that are pleasing to the carnal mind. It is not "the whole LGBT issue". That's merely the current trendy excuse. Also a lie people like to tell. Well...the harmful part is. The church IS intolerant* -- and well should be. The idea that such intolerance is harmful is nonsense. *Of course the way it is intolerant and what, exactly, it is intolerant against matters. It's been well explained by others...but it's a bit of a silly question if one steps back and looks at it more broadly. It's essentially asking how love and compassion are reconciled with sin and/or sinful drives. The answer isn't complicated. Sin is an intolerable thing BECAUSE of love and compassion.
  17. 5 points

    Your testimony

    Ugh. I'm actually writing a book on this topic. The short and easy answer is: When looking at the journey that was my conversion and taking in the mountains heavenly father moved to put the right people in my path, there is absolutely zero possibility that this isn't His will for me or that He doesn't exist. It doesn't matter that there are many things I don't have a testimony of. It doesn't matter that there are many things I don't understand. It doesn't matter that I very much struggle with some things relating to being a member of this church. What matters is there isn't the slightest doubt in my mind that in spite of all those things, I can't deny that He brought me to this place and went above and beyond to get me here.
  18. 5 points

    The LGBT stumbling block.

    As expected, the thinking is upside-down on several levels. First, the issue isn't created by the Church, but is manufactured by influential forces in society. The restored gospel has been around since 1830, whereas LGBT et al. sprung up less than 50 years ago. Second, the primary question is morality rather than love and tolerance. Indeed, morality is the reference point by which love and tolerance ought to be assessed.. It isn't loving or tolerant to any party involved to promote immorality. Quite the opposite. And, vice versa. Third, while the forces behind the cultural movement make a pretense of love and tolerance, they could care less about the groups they selectively target, and view them instead as "useful idiots" to manipulate into creating cultural strife, with the end goal of fomenting proliferating government dependency and accruing power to themselves. Whereas the Church cares deeply about the eternal welfare of all individuals and enabling them to become their very best selves. In spite of the pretense of love evoked by the PR sculptured image of happiness within the LGBT... community, disease and mental illness and deaths have skyrocketed since the movement began, not to mention the noticeable degradation of Western civilization. The o-called progressive agenda is anything but... On the other hand, the source for true joy as well as the power to counter destructive influences, is Christ, and this through his Restored Gospel. It is the true and proven plan of progression and salvation. It is the real way of love. Thanks, -Wade Englund-
  19. 5 points

    The LGBT stumbling block.

    This is legit. Seriously. My point is that I don't really have a stumbling block with LGFBT-whatever. To each his/her/its own. I try not to judge. And furthermore, I don't want to be in your bedroom or wherever you choose to do whatever it is that knocks your socks off. Come to church. “The church is not a place where perfect people gather to say perfect things, or have perfect thoughts, or have perfect feelings. The Church is a place where imperfect people gather to provide encouragement, support, and service to each other as we press on in our journey to return to our Heavenly Father.” ― Joseph B. Wirthlin Mark 2 16 And when the scribes and Pharisees saw him eat with publicans and sinners, they said unto his disciples, How is it that he eateth and drinketh with publicans and sinners? 17 When Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance. Come, Join with US. Uchtdorf, Oct 2013
  20. 5 points
    Out of all the things I've heard church leaders state over the years in the capacity of their calling, 99.9% of it is good advice, nothing objectionable, sound principles, gospel truths, etc. There is a tiny, tiny, miniscule handful of comments I've gathered over the almost-5 decades, that are problematic in some way. I could probably count all of them on both my hands. I'm guessing that most of that small amount of problematic stuff have come from the leader's stuff-they-were-always-taught, cultural knowledge, incorrect assumptions, etc. In other words, even in that tiny small handful, they were trying their best to do good, they were just letting some of their imperfect show. I have never personally encountered a church leader trying to do ill, work evil, be unhelpful, etc. Once or twice I've seen one lose their temper and speak out of negative emotion, but they've recovered and apologized later. But anyway, more than one of these comments have been clueless, ignorant, even harmful advice when it comes to mental illness. The human race has just naturally sucked at having this stuff figured out. We struggle to know what to do about it, or even to acknowledge that it exists. And when we're actually face to face with someone who is struggling with some form of it, and we can't empathize because we've got no clue what that's like, sometimes we, in our attempts to help, say something stupid. The last comment I encountered was from a counselor in our Bishopric, giving a talk on how to have peace in our lives. The offensive quote, which stood out and overshadowed everything else he had to say, was "You don't need a pill to feel the spirit." I looked over at my wife, who has been on a maintenance dose of brain pills for most of her adult life, and she just rolled her eyes. She had heard it before, from umpteen clueless idiots trying to help, and now she was hearing it taught across the pulpit by a member of the bishopric. Fortunately, she was at a mature point in her life when she didn't look to church leaders for help living life, and could identify and forgive the occasional slip. Maybe someone else less grounded heard it and gave up. It happens. The church tries hard. Elder Morrison has published stuff on the topic: Valley of Sorrow: A Layman's Guide to Understanding Mental Illness Myths about Mental Illness - October 2005 Ensign I've joked more than once that once they make me emperor of the Mormons, you'll have to read that book and pass a quiz before being ordained to any priesthood office. Book report for any Melchezedic office. Over the years, I've bought a dozen or more copies of the book, and handed it to new Bishops, Stake Presidencies, anyone who wanted a copy. The feedback was immediate and overwhelmingly positive. "I wish the church gave us more training on this" was a regular comment a couple of decades ago. These days, I'm told the church does indeed have training easily accessible for leaders on these subjects. We're doing better. But humans are still humans. Yeah, lots of people hear stuff wrong, have a chip on their shoulder, a persecution complex, a problem with authority, hate men in power, try to justify their complacency, are looking for a reason to be offended, are thin skinned and brittle, hurt by truth, offended by good advice they don't want to hear. Those are all things that happen. A lot. Probably 99% of the time, when I hear someone grousing about counsel from a leader, I'd be willing to think there's a problem with the person receiving counsel. But you know what else happens? Sometimes this or that leader might give imperfect advice. Sometimes even downright clueless, false, harmful advice. Almost never. But yeah, it happens sometimes. The solution isn't to blame the person complaining. Or blame the person who tried and failed. The solution is to spread the truth. No really - go read that 2nd link. Go get a copy of the book. If anyone wants to PM me, I will personally mail you a copy.
  21. 5 points

    For those who live in Utah...

    I live outside of Utah now, but I have lived in Utah. When I lived there, I never wanted to leave, but when I lived in Alaska I didn't want to leave there either or Washington (where I live now.) Like @classylady said, I think with the right attitude you can be happy just about anywhere. Or maybe I just don't like moving. lol. I have had non-members friends both in Utah and in other states. I love have a variety of friends. I don't think my testimony is affected by where I live. I also agree with @Jane_Doe ...I find more diversity of culture, race, religion and political beliefs outside of Utah. I like diversity a lot, so I will likely never move back to Utah. There's nothing wrong with Utah, I simply prefer where I am now. It's good to be happy wherever you are.
  22. 5 points
    Say amen loudly two minutes into a seven minute prayer.
  23. 5 points
    Tell speakers to stop starting their talks with a story about how they tried to avoid the bishopric who was about to assign him the talk or how they're so nervous... talk about dumping your own talk down the drain before it starts...
  24. 5 points
    Late hit on this, but I was mulling this over today and it occurred to me that the while believing the best in people’s motives until we are compelled to do otherwise is often a solid approach to life; the maxim as-given is overbroad and tends to benefit the legitimately evil (who do exist) at the expense of the credulous. Bolz-Weber wants people—yes, including children—to fornicate. She wants to tear down the moral, institutional, and familial barriers that deter fornication, including among youth. That is fundamentally evil. The high-minded psychobabble justifying her preferred praxis is less relevant than many of us would like to believe.
  25. 4 points
    Here's a shocker for you: As far as I'm concerned, if you pray about keeping the law of chastity and are convinced the answer is no, then go ahead and violate it to whatever degree your answer justifies. But....and it's a big but....the Abraham and Isaac principle comes into play. Abraham may have been told by God to sacrifice Isaac, but if I had been witness to his attempt, having had no such revelation, I would have beaten the living snot out of Abraham to protect Isaac. When you believe you have revelations that run contrary to commandments or recommendations or whatever, you have no guarantee that your priesthood leaders receive corresponding revelation. And you have no right* to complain when they run you through a disciplinary council. Acting on whatever odd revelation you feel you have received is your right--but that never guarantees you the organizational protections afforded those who follow the rules. Choices have consequences. Acting on your revelations means you better be prepared to accept the consequences. Even if that means not serving a mission and struggling to find your ideal spouse because of your prospects' litmus tests. * Well, you do have the right to complain. But you have no right to be listened to.