John Prather

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Everything posted by John Prather

  1. John Prather

    What is the Advantage?

    I am curious to know what is the advantage of being a member of the Church in this life? It would seem to be a less stressful mortal existence if you lived your earthly life without knowing the Gospel and worrying about following the commandments then dying and have it revealed to you without the physical temptations and mortal distractions. Sure, you'll be held accountable for what you do know generally, what light and knowledge and whatnot you do hold but for the most part you can say, "Hey, I didn't know." Plus, if you die young, all the better. It just seems the longer in life you live as a member the more opportunity you have to really screw up and suffer the Wrath of 'Dad' later on. Not quite seeing the advantage.
  2. I've heard all my life different people say they know/feel that God loves them. Is this a gift to know/feel this?
  3. John Prather

    How do I delete my account

    I also request to have my account deleted if you would.
  4. Dieter F. Uchtdorf "He who suffered so selflessly for us in the garden and on the cross will not leave us comfortless now. He will strengthen, encourage, and bless us. He will encircle us in His gentle arms. He will be more than an angel to us." Is there a waiting list to be on or am I to be registered somewhere? To me, this proves that HF & JC have their favorites.
  5. John Prather

    So When is This Supposed to Happen?

    The purpose of my rant was not to garnish sympathy or an act of attention seeking behavior. As I said in my previous post, I can usually hold it together when it comes to observation and quotes concerning being on the receiving end love. We can be emotionally arrested at an age when we experience trauma. So there is a little boy in me that screams, “That’s not fair!” from time to time. I have imagined myself being in a crowd where someone popular is standing on a platform throwing presents out to this crowd and the presents go over my head. I jump up but fail to get a gift. All those around me are getting something sometimes twice or more. I continue to jump until it seems futile. I say that I don’t want a present but I do. I realize I could knock a present away from someone else but I don’t. I want to but I don’t. So maybe people like me will have to wait till ‘later’ for our presents. I know others suffer more than I do. I’ve walked the slums of New Delhi. I believe I have seen the poor of the poor. And I try to count my blessings but I am missing the foundation. I used to pray to be loved but now I pray for that desire to be removed. I think I wanted people to know that even though we may be on the ‘same team’ we are not the same.
  6. John Prather

    So When is This Supposed to Happen?

    It has been interesting in reading the responses to this and other replies to my posts. For the most part, especially this one, I have found them (for the most part) to have been flippant. However, people are entitled to their opinions and viewpoints. It has reinforced my thinking that even in cyberspace I cannot establish any type of relationship or connections with others. I also, apparently, never developed an emotional bond with my parents. No hugs, no kisses, and a constant feeling of being in the way and costing money. No ‘I love you’s or words of encouragement as seen on TV. What I can remember is mom repeatedly saying is, “I can’t wait for you kids to move out.” That started around 4th grade for me. So with this background it is easy to see why I am not emotionally bonded with God the Father and His Son. They are just abstract entities or characters in a book. But I am told I am loved by these guys. So this is where the whole can o’ worms opens. I have no experience of feeling that I am loved by humans I can see. This does not translate well to Omnipotent beings who are said to love me. I am sometimes able to manage this feeling of frustration of not experiencing love but there are moments when I witness familial affection and I become enraged. So flash forward into adulthood. I am a Child Welfare/Child Protection Officer. We removed this one boy age about eight from his mother for neglect. Later on when we were working with mom for reunification with her son and mom decides she does want her son anymore. How do you tell a kid this? We stumbled through this via therapist but he was still asking why? A couple of weeks later I am transporting the boy to an appointment somewhere and we pull up to a stoplight and guess who should pull up beside us? He was screaming, wailing for his mother in the other car. She stared straight ahead. She knew he was there. He kept calling out for his mother. I still to this day get nausea recounting this scene. I once removed a boy from his mother for physical/medical neglect after she went to jail. He was about 9ish or so. He would dance for her when she did show up for visits. Eventually she stopped showing up and her rights were terminated. The boy had a lot of behavior problems before but was exacerbated by his mother abandoning him. He was adopted but the adoption didn’t take and he was returned and abandoned again. I assigned him a Big Brother. This guy was awesome. Had a son about the same age. He had a job that paid well and took our boy with the rest of his family out on family trips. And then this Big Brother got himself killed in a car wreck! Where is the love of God? See, now I wonder what kind of adult this boy turned into. How much of his earthly life will be held against him in the choices he will make? He is one of many, many episodes in my life that I am haunts me. I developed a feeling that God no longer loves me and others but have set us up to fail. There is to me the academic approach to the gospel and then there is the emotional one. I have no problems with the intellectual aspect but I am livid with anger about internalizing the emotional part. I would never stand up in Jr. Sunday School and say I hate God but I sure feel it inside me that I do. I hurt and I hate. I turned 55 a couple of days ago and then has not been a moment of enlightenment where comfort has come. This why I have attempted suicide. I don’t want to live again or experience any form of awareness. I would like to die and enter oblivion. But I don’t even have that to look forward to. I was told by someone here that this is a place to come and blow off steam. I do this and maybe get some insight that I have overlooked before but I am met with clucking tongues and waggling index fingers saying ‘All ya gotta do is…’ I read the scriptures and try and keep the commandments as best as mortals can….so where is the peace? Am I neurologically not capable of feeling certain emotions? A heads up from God would be nice.
  7. First off, make sure at least one of you is not crazy.
  8. I experienced tunnel vision as I travelled down the path of attempted suicide. All I saw before me were the pills as I consumed them. I tried twice. If I do it again there will not be a failure. I am glad for jerome1232's happy little Pollyanna attitude. There is no one in my life that I would begin to follow around begging for forgiveness. Somehow people, especially within the Church, think that we all begin in life with the same genetic makeup, same family environment, that we are all the same. I would like to at least once before I die to stand up in a Fast and Testimony meeting and say that I hate you all.
  9. I recommend watching the documentary, The Bridge. You can find it on YouTube.
  10. John Prather

    Bullying at Church

    I remember being the only one going to church from my family to a meeting house 25 miles away in another town. Had no friends there and was bullied by several boys. Adults did nothing. Set the stage for my bitterness towards the church.
  11. John Prather

    What is the Advantage?

    But you took a chance coming here initially so the risks are the same.
  12. John Prather

    Why do planes crash

    I was on a flight once where something happened to the landing gear upon take off. The wheels would not retract so we flew low and slow with the wheels down. The flight attendants were moving people around to different seats to even out the plane. We took crash positions just before landing. I too watch forensic plane crash shows that do reenactments and I all I could think of at that time is; Who will they get to portray me in a TV show reenactment?
  13. I don't think it is a matter of "lowering ones expectations" but becoming more realistic and practical. And a bitter shout-out to Unixknight; it's all just neurochemicals swishing around in your gray matter. And while I'm at it, Bah! Humbug!
  14. This is a really cool question! I have not thought of this before. I always thought that some angels wanted to scare some mortals 'cause that is what I would do. I would venture to think that it has to do with those who have their hearts in the right place i.e. humble, prayerful, etc. and this was the miracle that followed their faith. Now here is something that I have just thought about; what if some of you were that angel or part of the Heavenly Host praising God and whatnot? I bet these shepherds were asked to speak at the Firesides of their time to give testimony of the events they witnessed.
  15. John Prather

    God made me this way!

    I honestly don't think God made anybody. Sure, the spirit maybe but here on earth? Pretty much anybody can make a baby with parts they have around the house. Coming from the presence of God, contents may have shifted and product is sold by weight not by volume. We are pretty much dumped here and have to figure it out. I also believe we were bought on credit, never paid for, and are being repossessed one by one.
  16. John Prather

    Loving God

    So the scriptures say that if you love God then keep his commandments. What if you don't love God? Sure, I'm that guy. I have issues about love and whatnot. I feel nothing towards God except maybe negative emotions. I try to keep the commandments but I am not motivated by love. Mostly compliance out of fear.
  17. I would like to see a movie based on Jeff Wayne's, War of the Worlds musical. Also a remake of Frank Norris', Greed. A fun film would be a parody of Triumph of Will but focus on North Korea. Plus a good film adaptation of H.P. Lovecraft. I would like to see The Dunwich Horror, Color of Space, Shunned House, The Strange Case of Dexter Ward. Not sure if there is anything by Albert Camus that has been put to film but would love to see, The Plague or The Stranger.
  18. John Prather

    Loving God

    After much thought about this whole 'love' thing missing in my life, I realize that everyone suffers something experienced here in mortality. It means a lot to me to hear from some of you and what you have faced in your journeys. Then there are those you who waggle their finger and say, "All you gotta do is..." and fail to take into account that not all of us are cut from the same cloth. I have been to five therapists over the course of my life working on my lack of experience of experiencing love. Of course there were several bishops as well. Scriptures and prayer have been the foundation as well. As I have said there is the struggle and reconciliation between emotional and intellectual aspect of the gospel. It is said that when one suffers a personal calamity they are emotionally arrested at that age. So I know there is a little boy in me that is hurt. At this core of my being I am so angry as to having to seek out love from my Father in Heaven. Here on earth a parent doesn't instruct their child to, "Hey, find out if I love you or not.! Naw, it'll be fun!" Why should I have to make the effort when some of you have always known it since day one? There is a guy in my ward who is confined to a wheelchair and I think he has been all his life. I know that he feels loved by his family and I'm sure by extension he feels loved by God. I would trade places with him in a heartbeat if I could have what he has had and now possess. I have asked before in here what the lower kingdoms get to do after the whistle blows and we all clear out this mortal pool. I have thoughts of suicide like some people have thoughts of winning the lottery. I have attempted it twice now with the obvious lack of success. What is it that is said? Suicide is saying to God, "You can't fire me! I quit!" Attention seeking behavior? I think not. I think I post here is that I lack an intimate emotional connection that would allow me to express and think through my thoughts and feelings. Now why is that? Oh right, this whole lack of love and God-thing that has prevented me from establishing healthy relationships. Oh well, thanks for some of you with sincere thoughts and expressions with my outbursts.
  19. John Prather

    Loving God

    I don't know what it is that I expect. That is a good question. I do remember when I watched "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" (animated) as a child and his heart grew bigger, I thought somehow that must be how it felt. One therapist did say that I had not experienced unconditional love. I did have two maternal grandparents but the male was always yelling at me for some offence and the female I think never noticed me to any great extent. They all died around my 9th birthday. My dad's dad died before I was born and his mother so aloof. This is all interesting to me as I write this down and reflect upon my memories. My brothers are all raging alcoholics and drug users. One of them is dead from the effect alcohol. I know people have described love as a warm feeling so there must be something internal that is experienced. I have now thought of the metaphor of one born without arms and others talking hitting their 'funny bone'. Maybe it is one of those life situation where all another can do is shrug their shoulders and say it sucks to be you.
  20. John Prather

    Loving God

    I regret my ambiguity on my initial post. I think the root of the problem is my inability to reconcile the intellectual knowledge with the visceral emotion. I don't feel loved by God let alone by others. I don't know this emotion though I can observe it. Because of this I have resented God all my life. My mental image of God is that of the Norse god Odin; powerful yet aloof. I feel nothing towards God, He is just there. I have to refrain from sarcasm when others ask if I have prayed about this or imply that up to this point I have not made a concerted effort in obtaining what I seek. Yes I have. It has been a lifelong pursuit. I guess that I bring up this topic hoping someone has this same situation in their life as has succeeded in obtaining Godly love and acceptance when they started not having this experience and I could learn from them. Or maybe it is a quixotic quest on my part. Surely I can't be the only one with this experience?
  21. I need help understanding by what it means to give your problems, fears, etc. over to Christ. I read an article that said the a gentleman learn to do this. What does this mean and how do you achieve this?
  22. John Prather

    How to help a new widow?

    I've attended several seminars and conferences over the years dealing with death and grief. The take away that I learned was that, though there are stages of grief, there is no set order in which a person experiences them. I have found that letting the person know that they are loved and you are thinking about them is a good foundation for caring. Making yourself available and letting them know this is comforting. People grieve (inward) and mourn (outward) in various ways. Concern should noted if their grieving is impacting their quality of life. Some people may tend to want to be alone and this should be respected but if they become totally isolated from the world for a extreme amount of time then an intervention of some nature would be recommended. People often think that the subject of the decease is taboo but it has been my experience that people generally like to talk about their loved one who has passed. Another factor related is the loss of the sense of identity. I was so and so's husband/wife. That is what some people refer to when they experience the death of a person in their life when they say they feel a loss. Again, everyone is different so the approach has to be tailored to that individual.
  23. John Prather

    Giving It All Over to Christ.

    I also remember of a story, I think it was Hugh B. Brown, that took place during WW I. He met a French woman who had lost her husband and three of her sons to the war. She was asked how she was coping with the situation in her life. She replied she left it at the alter. What does this mean? Leaving it at the alter aka casting your burdens upon Christ?
  24. I was wondering the other day; what will those not in the Celestial Kingdom do with their eternity? Stand around thinking about how they should have done better? Endless games of solitaire? Lay around in fetal positions cursing their mortal decisions?
  25. John Prather

    How are you celebrating Thanksgiving?

    God in his infinite wisdom decided that I do not get marketable skills and thus have to work on Thanksgiving.