I have had some very deep conversations with many friends both online and offline in the past several months. I’ll start with Christianity in general. I think as a people we don’t even know the God we worship. If we did we would be more kind and giving. We would certainly focus our time and energy differently. I think we would solve hunger, poverty, and bullying. Can you imagine a society that actually emphasized the well being of neighbors and strangers to be as important as their own? As I have studied the life of Christ it seems to me his teachings were perhaps more about putting others first. Why do we miss that?
As to Mormonism. Has their ever lived a more enlightened people in the history of the world? We have temples within reach of nearly everyone and more being built every month. The church is making an impact for people’s well being all around the globe. Not just their spiritual well being but their other needs as well. What the church is doing to improve health and living conditions is staggering. We truly are a beacon to the world. Why then are so many members suffering shame, guilt, anger and pain? Why are so many leaving the church or falling inactive? Why are so many kids committing suicide? Satan is a masterful strategist. We are not perfect, we all fall short, we all sin. If it were not for the Atonement we all would be lost. Satan wants us to believe we will never be good enough, we can’t be forgiven, why try, your not welcome here. He often uses other people, especially the self righteous to do his dirty work. Does this sound and feel familiar?
I guess what I’m trying to say is you are loved. You have value. We need to find it in ourselves to be better. Pursue the things that make us better. Find empathy in our hearts. Serve others. Put off the natural man by being kind, patient, gentle, compassionate. Give. Give. Give. Have faith and hope and teach those things to your children. As you grow repent of the things you are ready to repent of. If your not ready don’t repent. In our culture we have the fullness of truth but lack the wisdom to use it. We miss the mark just like a monkey trying to use a compass. God already provided a Savior for us and we will repent. Our problem is our hearts. Change the hearts of men and the world changes. With neither faith nor hope there is no Charity. Where charity fails we have Christianity and Mormonism that is hollow and dead. They cannot save us simply by membership and a recommend. Change the world by worrying less about yourself and more about everyone else. I know I am far from perfect, but I know kindness. I believe God values some things more than others and pretending your sins for some reason are less damning than someone elses is simply well crafted stupidity. Sin may damn us but Charity will elevate us and bring more change to our lives than anything we can do. It will free you from shame and when you are ready it will free you from sin. The most temple worthy person in the world that lacks Charity will find his ladder falls short. Worthy is so subjective because it’s a minimal checklist of rules yet misses the character so often. Change your world by changing your heart. If your unhappy a big reason may be others have screwed with your expectations of yourself. The great and spacious building is an illusion of happiness and it is filled with those professing Christ but whose hearts are far from him.
In conclusion Christ had more hope for the sinner and the cast out than he ever did for the hypocrite. Don’t give up, you are loved. If you feel screwed up you will find empowerment and light simply by being kind.