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Showing content with the highest reputation since 04/02/14 in all areas

  1. 17 points

    I'm not a Mormon

    I'm not a Mormon. At best, I'm a struggling non-denominational Christian. I'm also a person who has done something many non-Mormons won't do. I have always heard so many negative things about Mormons and the LDS. Horrible things that made want to stay clear of Mormons. All my life, childhood, adulthood, in and out church, from everyone including fellow Christian's. Horrible things said about Mormons. One day, servings at my now old church, I had a fellow Christian make a negative remark about Mormons. One remark too many for me to accept. So I asked him, what proof do you have to back up your remark? He struggled, but failed to give any proof. His remarks was based on ignorance and social impressed impression/social acceptence. That was not okay. Facts from learning he failed to have. So this got me thinking that day about what the truth was about Mormons and the howdo I find out. Well, it was days after that some missionaries came to my door. I saw opportunity and it just knocked on my front door. It was this moment where I knew a journey for me was starting. I talked to the missionaries and invested time to learn about Mormons and the LDS. Without any judgement, I gave my desires to learn the truth. Want to know what I learned? ... First, there are endless lies constantly being told about Mormons and the LDS Church. Out of ignorance and other motivated reasons, people tell lies about Mormons. Oh my goodness, the lies I always heard. Misinformed andmisundertood because it is easier to tell a lie than to take out the time to learn the truth. Mormons are good hearted people has a strong sense of family. A sense of family that is stronger than any I've seen from any other faith. A sense of family that can not be compared or equal to any other faith. I was super amaze. I've learned alot about Mormons and the LDS Church. I have more learning to do and I'm not a Mormon, but find myself defending the Mormon faith with an open mind against the lies and insults I hear constantly. No, I'm not a Mormon but I will defend thier faith when I hear lies and insults others say. Why? Cause I have learned the truth about Mormons and the LDS Church and I will not accept anything but the truth. Mormons are good people and always welcome in my life and home. I have more to learn, but I am getting with missionaries. We'll see where my journey goes from hear. Don't need to be a Mormon to like them.
  2. 15 points

    Forgetting my fiances past

    Wow. It has been over 4 years. I had nearly forgotten about this post, but I'm sure some random internet lurkers are bound to happen upon this thread and want advice about their own situation or just want to know how things turned out. First of all, thank you all for the advice. To all the lurkers, there is some awesome advice here. I married her! Never regretted it! We're loving life. Now, a few things that I've learned: 1. She was never the problem. It was always me (basically, I was an idiot). 2. The idea of virginity is just that, an idea. 3. What matters most is that you're best friends. Best friends are loyal to each other no matter what happened in the past. 4. The past isn't real. The present is everything. The future is a dream. My advice, is that if you're in this type of situation, get over yourself. Assuming your significant other is completely loyal to you, if you still find yourself "haunted" by their past then the most important thing you need to ask yourself is, "Can I be the spouse my SO needs?" If the answer is no, then stop jeopardizing your SO's happiness by constantly dragging your thoughts through the nonexistant past. Get out of the relationship for their sake. If you can honestly answer yes, then go for it. You've got an entire lifetime to make amazing memories together. I was taught growing up that it was better to die than to lose your virtue. I disagree with that. I was also taught that those who had lost their virtue were like "licked ice cream" or "chewed gum". That way of thinking is wrong, and it's very harmful. Let go of that type of thinking. It benefits no one. Elizabeth Smart talked about what it feels like to be a "chewed piece of gum" and it sounds terrible: http://fox13now.com/2013/05/06/elizabeth-smart-i-felt-like-a-chewed-up-piece-of-gum/ Don't put your SO through that. If you're best friends, nothing else matters. Best of luck to your SO (and you) if you're in the situation I was in. In conclusion, this image sums it all up:
  3. 15 points

    How could I have forgotten? Big news.

    My little boy, my 37 yr old pumpkin, is engaged! I think they will get married at the end of next term. They've been dating 2 years, she's a doctoral student as well - in education statistics, for crying out loud. Petite (former gymnast), a blond Swede to match my son's 20% Finnish background (we got tested). She actually came with me to a church activity. I'd say the two of them are what I understand to be 'dry Mormons.' They like a lot about the Mormon lifestyle, but aren't ready to make the commitment, but culturally, at least, there's a meeting of the minds on modesty, family night, preparedness, homeschooling, the role of the father in the family, etc., which is good. Actually, other than homeschooling, this is pretty much how we lived before I converted. I'm glad he wants to repeat it in his own family, whether he's in the Church or not. She's 28 and ready to have babies (her words), so, perhaps I'll be a nana before they put me in the assisted living facility.
  4. 14 points

    I don't know and it's ok

    In another thread or two, it's been stated that we don't know exactly what went on with former prophets and revelation. We don't know and that it's ok that we don't--sometimes we are asked to go on faith. I'm involved in the Indianapolis Temple open house/tours that is currently going on. As part of the tour, we are letting people know that no photographs are allowed inside the temple, but photos are available on our website. One woman asked why no photographs if there are already pictures available? The sister missionaries turned to me with panic in their eyes and I simply responded, "I don't know. I don't know the answer to that. All I can say is that we are asking that you not take photographs while inside." I think that we are in an information age that can be overwhelming with knowledge. We have so many facts and other information available to us at the touch of a finger. With the advent of the internet, information can be gained instantaneously. But, sometimes we need to be courageous and say, "I don't know." Sometimes that needs to be followed up with, "but I'll find out." And sometimes we need to be satisfied that we don't know something and that it doesn't mean we are wrong, dumb, or secretive. This reminds me that there are some things about the Gospel that I don't understand at all or fully. But, isn't that what faith is for? I have a testimony of Jesus as my Savior, that the church is His church, the Book of Mormon is scripture and Joseph Smith was who he said he was. Everything else just falls under that. So what if my understanding is less than a 2 year old? I plan on taking some awesome classes in the next life and there are gonna be some great teachers.... "Sealings: what do they really do and why are they so necessary? -- taught by Elijah and Malachi." I don't know everything and I'm ok....I need to make that my mantra.
  5. 13 points
    @JayKi, From the time I returned from my mission to Italy, I had an Italian pen pal. She actually was sort of "in love" with me, but after I made it clear that we weren't going to go in that direction, we had a very nice, years-long letter-writing relationship. (This was in the years before email.) Though I didn't want romance with her, I really cared about this young woman. When I married my wife, she objected to my Italian female pen pal. Like you, I didn't understand this attitude. Like you, I thought I should be able to be friends with whomever I wanted, and it was really not any of her business. I mentioned this to my mother one day in passing, and she quickly set me straight. I decided that if my wife and mother agreed about that thing, it was probably myself that was not seeing things right. So I wished my pen pal well and stopped writing her. That's the kind of thing we do to safeguard marriage. The marital state is a sacred thing, and we should sanctify it. Honestly, friend, if this woman's husband doesn't want you seeing her, You Should Not Be Seeing Her. Her marriage to her husband is vastly more important than your friendship with her. Look, you're a smart guy. Be smart enough to realize that when two dozen people tell you the same thing -- two dozen people who, by the way, probably wouldn't find anything else to agree on in a year of conversation -- that means that you are probably the one who's wrong. Don't be prideful, friend. Be humble. Tell your friend you are happy to keep hanging out with her, as long as her husband is there, too. Maybe you can bring your girlfriend/fiancée with you and make it a double date. Just keep it on the up-and-up.
  6. 13 points
    Fair enough. I will share my personal story of growth. Wife and kids embarked into things 4-H, and we got chickens and turkeys and stuff. When it was fall, I got the mixed blessing of being sent to the meat processing folks, turn some of our chickens into "chicken". Wife already knew all this stuff, but daughters and I learned. We all cried as we loaded them up. It was a somber and quiet ride back. Wife taught daughters where their food comes from, and we're all more mature now. That wasn't the story - here's the story: The next spring, they sent me again, with more chickens. These chickens weren't culled in the fall. We kept them through the winter. I was loading them up at 5am, shivering in the cold, making sure they would have protection from the wind as I drove to the plant. Because you treat life with respect, and making critters suffer, even if they're going to be dead in an hour, isn't what you do. As I loaded them up, several things dawned on me. First, they'd been in our barn the entire winter, which had been a heck of a lot colder than this morning. That was fine - chickens are just fine pretty much no matter how cold it gets - as long as they're dry and out of the wind. But it wasn't like they were out frolicking in the sun eating bugs. When you're livestock, winter is something you endure and live through - not something you particularly enjoy. It's a law of reality. It also dawned on me that these chickens had been perfectly ready to go to the processors last fall, and they had endured the winter because I had NOT taken them to be processed. That was the personal growth I'm talking about - these critters were born to live and then die and be food. It was their nature. Their God-given purpose. It dawned on me that these tiny-brained feathery critters understood this better than I did. I anthromorphized a discussion with them when I got back. Wife: How did they do? Me: Just fine. They weren't happy with me though. Wife: What do you mean? Me: They kept calling me fat boy. They said "It's about dang time. Wake us up early to take us on a drive that should have happened last year. We were cold last winter, fat boy." I learned about stewardship over the earth and the creatures that crawl upon it that day. I learned about the law of the harvest. I got no better way to explain it than this. If you still don't get it, maybe it takes actually raising something and killing it to teach this lesson. The firefighters did right by the piglets, and the farmers did right by the firefighters. To have let those piglets die would have been unethical. To expect the saved piglets to be anything besides pigs, would have been to ignore the law of the harvest.
  7. 13 points
    Today was lawn-mowing day. Husband wound up having to stay very late with the client. I was playing with my girls in the yard, musing about a recent desire to learn how to use a lawn mower after watching some 9-year-old girl with the sturdiness of a stalk of celery mowing the lawn. So... I pulled up a PDF of our lawn mower's user manual... and I mowed the lawn. I feel so empowered.
  8. 13 points
    Dear Little Linda's mom, Thanks for your note. I love having Little Linda as a student and I think she's a great kid. I understand your feelings and respect that you want to feed your daughter healthy foods. However, I'm her teacher, not her mother, and it would be both inappropriate and against school policy for me to bring her snacks. But feel free to send Little Linda to school with her snacks; she will be allowed to eat them at lunchtime and at other appropriate times during the day. If you want the school to provide food for Little Linda, the school lunch program is the way the school discharges that duty. My understanding is that the school lunches are nutritious and pleasant. If you have concerns about them, please feel free to discuss that with the administration. The principal can be reached at 987-654-3210, and by email at [email protected] Thanks, Little Linda's teacher
  9. 13 points

    Help... LoC

    In all honesty, get a different boyfriend. This one cares nothing for you personally, your goals, or what you are trying to achieve. If things are as you say, he is not worth your time. Talk to him once more, just long enough to say "Goodbye, good luck, and never contact me again", then begin your new life as a disciple of Christ who does not have a creepy boyfriend. Sorry if this sounds unChristlike. I don't think it is. Sometimes we have to do the hard thing, like tell a "boyfriend" that he is no longer any such thing.
  10. 13 points

    Baby news update

    Some of you may recall the announcement a while back that my wife was expecting. For those who like baby news or those who have been wondering my lovely Mrs. SpiritDragon invited our little spirit dragon-whelp into the world Friday night. Our newest addition is a little girl. 7 lbs, 12 oz.
  11. 13 points
    My son got married this weekend. Of course, the folks at church who are his age have been married 10-15 years, but better late than never, I suppose. We had rain, but it stopped for the outdoor wedding and every time we had to do something, so that worked out (big shout out, HF!). Now for the grandkids!
  12. 13 points

    Members Who Disrupt Lessons at Church

    The subject of one's excommunication should never be a part of a Relief Society lesson or a Sunday School lesson.
  13. 13 points

    Laman and Lemuel

  14. 12 points
    One reason, is because until the covenant is made, there isn't a covenant in place. Up until that moment, either party is fully able to back out of the deal at any time, with or without reason. And it happens.
  15. 12 points

    The MTC Abuse Story

    The big question mark, of course, is what does "doing more" mean? Where does the rubber hit the road? I do like @Sunday21's idea of having a glass partition between the clerk's office and bishop's office. But that said, windows are to ecclesiastical sex abuse what banning AR-15s is to gun violence: They are solutions geared towards a statistically-insignificant subset of the problem. Most abusive ecclesiastical leaders aren't doing the nasty with female congregants right there in their offices. Bishop's case is a statistical outlier, but even his alleged assaults didn't happen in his regular office; he had apparently set up another room for his use. And as the administrator of what is essentially a small-sized college complete with dorm rooms, if the administrator wants a place for his rendezvous . . . he's going to have the power to set that up. He just is. So, what changes are we really looking at? So far, those leading the outrage seem to want changes in the power/relational dynamics at play; and to this end I've seen advocating for five major changes: 1) Every allegation is to be believed--not only in dealing with the victim on a therapeutic basis; but in dealing with the perpetrator on a punitive basis; 2) Alleged perpetrators are to receive formal LDS discipline forthwith, with the victims being made aware of the results; 3) ecclesiastical leaders should receive no special deference within their congregations; 4) ecclesiastical leaders should not be interviewing congregants on a one-on-one basis; and 5) ecclesiastical leaders shouldn't be talking about chastity issues with youth under any circumstances. Without going into too long of a rant; suffice it to say that I think 1), 2), 3), and 5) are nonstarters; and I think the ultimate resolution of 4) is that it's going to need to be determined by individual bishops on a case-by-case basis. Also, I agree with @The Folk Prophet . When Ms. Park says that "One of the biggest issues in our community is how the faithful and the non-faithful interact. It has been an issue that has long-since plagued our people"--well, ma'am, it's a faith community. Traditionally when one chooses not to have faith in the community's truth claims, one elects not to remain in the community. The issue is that Mormonism's "faith community" has worked so well, from a socio-cultural standpoint, that it has accrued a lot of sociological bling that the disaffected don't want to give up. So they make a concerted effort to get the overall faith community to abandon its truth claims and replace them with a faith in sociological riches attenuated to left-wing social justice theory; never stopping to wonder whether they may be killing the doctrinal goose that's been laying all those culturally golden eggs. But then those pesky "True Believing Mormons" push back on the grounds that a) they sort of like Mormonism the way it is, and b) they're pretty sure God does too. And the disaffected completely lose their cookies over the resultant impasse. They hate us; they honestly hate us—with a depth incomprehensible to those who haven’t been subjected to it; and with a justification incomprehensible to those who have been subjected to it. What Ms. Park (who, by the way, is one of the head honchos over at the "Feminist [anti-]Mormon Housewives" blog) is really saying is, "I'm not going to let this crisis go to waste. Not only am I going to push for changes that are going to make Mormonism "safer"; but I'm going to push for ways to convert Mormonism from a religion to a social club."
  16. 12 points
    The Holy Spirit of Promise has to ratify any sealing that is performed in the temple in order for it to persist in the exalted world, and He won't ratify that which is not in accordance with the desires of the consenting agents and God.
  17. 12 points

    Actually Felt The Spirit

    Since I have been investigating the LDS church, members (and you lot!) keep telling me that something will happen and I will feel the spirit and things will change. As most of you know I like things to make sense, I like to study things and gain knowledge and understanding of truth that way. I know that is not how most LDS members come to find the truth of the Book of Mormon. Anyway, for all of you who know someone like me, PLEASE get them to read this very simple article currently featured on this website. https://mormonhub.com/blog/faith/defending-the-faith/book-of-mormon-hoax/ I actually cried while reading it. I don't know if I have a complete testimony for the church or all its teachings, but I know one thing. Joseph Smith was a prophet of God and the Book of Mormon is true. Thank you all so much for helping (and putting up with) me. I feel very happy and full of hope. Now I just have to save my husband!
  18. 12 points

    Squashing doubts

    While waiting to see if anyone has a similar experience, I will tell you something which in my experience is 100% true: It does not matter whether your decision was right; make it so that it is right. Don't fall for the modern-world nonsense of "right person". You, as an agent to act, can make it so that your decision is the right one. You can actively do things so that you love your husband deeply now, are committed completely to him now - beyond doubt, and are happy together with him now. This will be easier if he works with you in compatible ways. Tell the doubts to take a flying leap and then get to work making your decision the right one. This is far, far better than any alternative.
  19. 12 points

    Hello! I'm LadyGator

    Hello, my name is LadyGator! Yes, that LadyGator. I decided that it was time to stop letting @MormonGator have all of the fun so I decided to join in.
  20. 12 points

    Sealed today

    My wife, a recent convert to the church, and I were sealed today to each other and to our 4-month old son. She was still a recent convert when we were married in 2013, so after prayerful consideration, we decided on a civil wedding. 22 months later now, the eternal marriage is complete. I love the gospel so much. The beauty and truthfulness of the gospel serves as protection to us in such a polarized world. I am grateful for the guidance and protection the gospel and Priesthood authority provides us, both temporally and eternally. I just wanted to share something positive and testimonial on here. Thank you for the opportunity to share it.
  21. 12 points
    A little bit of a story with a happy ending to share-- For me, the most difficult part about being in an interfaith marriage is not the non-member husband, but handling the evangelical mother-in-law that comes with him. When hubby and I started dating, MIL was a huge fan of me… except for my “Mormon problem”. Needless to say religion has been a rocky subject. To learn about Mormonism, MIL signed up for a class on the subject at her church, entitled “Mormonism and the Evil Cults” (or something like that). She got a lot of bad information, and doesn’t really listen to what I say because she honestly thinks I’m brainwashed and hell-bound (roll eyes). Though, to be fair to her, I haven’t been perfect on the issue (like not inviting her far enough in advance to baby girl’s blessing). Anyway, the purpose of this post is to celebrate: last night we chatted and had a great discussion sharing testimonies. I learned a lot more about her and feel that she learned a lot more about me. Not only did she not stone me for sharing me testimony, she liked it! I’m still kind of in “wow” shock…. Just wanted to share good news with you all J.
  22. 12 points

    Devastated and Lost

    Hi Ruthiesmom - I can understand being thrown for a loop by some of the newer stuff that's out there. That said, I do think there's good scholarly evidence out there that leaves room for belief. Given the way the Church has traditionally told its story, there may be some preconceptions you'll have to leave behind--but be careful not to throw out the baby with the bathwater. What factors led you to have a "testimony"? Have those specific factors really changed? Generally speaking: Fairlds.org is a good apologetics site; so is JeffLindsay.com. Joseph Smith's polygamy is covered in-depth by Brian Hales' website at josephsmithpolygamy.org. FARMS/Maxwell Institute has some good info; so does MormonInterpreter.com. Lots of folks here will also be happy to discuss your concerns, with the caveat that you'll probably see a better response if you open a new thread specifically dealing with each concern as opposed to simply creating a "laundry list thread" and continually shifting from one concern to the next (makes it easier to stay on topic). :) Pres. Uchtdorf's advice to "doubt your doubts" also has some merit. Be sure to ask critical questions of those who are asking critical questions. For example: 1. Why is it so much worse if Joseph Smith translated most of the Book of Mormon through one magic rock (the Chase seer stone) as opposed to two magic rocks (Urim and Thummim)? 2. Why would Smith bother to develop an Egyptian Grammar/Alphabet at all, if he knew it would be useless in translating any other Egyptian texts that might fall into his hands and might actually be used by his associates to constrain or undermine any future translations he might produce? 3. Why did some of Joseph Smith's most bitter detractors nevertheless maintain that Fanny Alger was, in fact, sealed to Joseph Smith? 4. If William McLellin's report was correct that everyone--or even a critical mass of attendees--was smashed at the Kirtland (not Nauvoo) Temple dedication, then why did McLellin--by his own account--try to conceal the visibly drunk Samuel Smith from the view of the rest of the congregation? 5. Mormonism has a reasonably coherent theological rationale for why requests for some miracles--even when made via priesthood blessings--can go unanswered. Can atheism produce any secular rationale for the miracles that do happen, other than the same "frenzied mind" "anyone-who-disagrees-with-me-is-mentally-ill" psychobabble that Korihor was spouting two millennia ago? Anyhow . . . by all means, study it out; but remember that nobody discusses Mormonism without bias. Those who claim to, are lying. Be willing to admit what you don't know, and beware of anyone--inside or outside of Mormonism--who claims to have easy, pat answers for anything. And, don't buy into the idea that you Must Do Something Right Now. You've lived the lifestyle. It's not a bad one. Your kids aren't being secretly introduced to cocaine, or groomed to participate in someone's harem. Nothing's going to happen with your kids inside of Mormonism for the next few months--or even years, if that's what it takes--that won't be substantially reversible if you ultimately decide your conscience requires you to leave. Take your time, do your research, fast, study, pray, and when you feel ready--make a decision and stick with it.
  23. 12 points
    I have not said anything before because it is your choice, (and I can respect that) I had no real practical experience to offer, and all the generic things I might have said had already been said. But with this post I feel I have something to add. When you asked about having your name removed I figured/guess/assumed that you wanted to cut off all contact with the church more or less permanently. Removing your name is the way to do that. But this post sound like you are more interesting in maybe taking a break and then trying to start over? Removing your name for a reset or starting over is like setting off a bomb when you want to remodel your house. Sure it can gets you a clean slate, but it is much more extreme then is really necessary. If you are looking to come back (maybe) at a future date then there are less extreme methods to do that then to have your name removed.
  24. 11 points
    Translating this into English, we get: "We've broken it short of intercourse, but don't want to face that fact." IMO, go see your bishop(s) who can help you understand the seriousness of it. Perhaps right after you go get a civil marriage to ensure you don't sin further. I have also found that a detailed study (which is not the same as "reading scriptures", and which includes pondering, note taking, and more pondering) of something you think you understand will give you greater understanding.
  25. 11 points

    our choice in the pre-existence

    A few clarifications. This is the oft-told story, the one I grew up with and believed, but it's only approximately true. To be clear: At some point during our premortal life, the Father presented THE plan of salvation. There was only one. That plan required a Savior to redeem mankind. The First, whom we know today as Jesus the Christ, responded "Here am I. Send me, and the honor be Thine [that is, the Father's]." The Father did so. At least one other responded, "Here am I. Send me. I will redeem all, that none shall be lost. Since my plan is superior, give me the honor." He was rejected. He and those who followed him then rebelled and were cast out, having failed to keep their first estate. Nowhere in scripture is mentioned any idea of "competing plans" or (as I have often heard in my life) that we "voted". Our only "vote" was to decide whether we championed the Father's plan or Satan's rebellion. And it is crystal clear, at least to me, that Satan's only "plan" was to usurp the Father's honor and glory. He, Satan, had no "plan" to bring all to exaltation. Such is impossible, a defiance of the very meaning of the word "exalt". Satan's only "plan", if you care to call it that, was to usurp the Father's honor and destroy the agency of mankind. That is the selfsame "plan" he pursues today. I would say our main point of decision was whether we loved and sought to follow the Father (or equivalently, his Only Begotten), or whether we loved and sought to follow other voices. Same point of decision we have now.