Coming Out & Going In

DPR-41 Coming Out and Going In 5 – With Love for My Mormon Friends

Posted on Posted in Christian Studies, DallyPost Media, DallyPost Radio

My question for you is simply this. Do you want to know God’s whole truth enough to risk everything? I hope you do and I pray that we can walk this wondrous road together.

Download episode


Today, I am speaking to those with whom I once shared a common faith; the faith of Mormonism. I am reaching out to my children who I love more than life itself. I am begging my seven younger brothers. I am calling out to my mother who has shed many bitter tears of sadness and confusion over my new direction. There are many, among the Mormons who were once my friends but now chose to not see me as such; and others who have hated me and for whom I once felt hate, I am reaching out to you. There is a Bishop and a Stake President who, filled with their own false sense or superiority, placed themselves above the laws of the land and the laws of God in an unholy effort to exercise total unrighteous dominion over parts of my live that were none of their affair. You, and each of you mean so much to me. I know that many of you are at least disappointed in my recent choice and at most feel betrayed. In love, I implore each of you.

Each of you have concerns, doubts and worries about certain troubling points of Mormon doctrine. I know it. You know it. You cannot deny it. The answer given by the Mormon church is to not focus on these things, but to instead focus on only those things that strengthen your belief as a Mormon. A perfect example of this can be found in the recent interview of Dallin Oaks with Helen Whitney for the PBS special “The Mormons”. He stated, “It’s wrong to criticize leaders of the Church, even if the criticism is true…“. He also said that, “Not everything that’s true is useful“. Consider Jesus and John the Baptist who spoke truth in their criticism of the Jewish church leaders of that day. If you turn to Mormon doctrine and you will see that Lehi, Abinadi and many others spoke truth in strong criticism of the church leaders of their day.

Do the messages of Dallin Oaks and Jesus Christ align? Jesus said, “If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.[1]. Oaks clearly states that only carefully screened, sanitized and selected bits of truth are worthy of your attention. On the other hand, Jesus is clear. All truth is acceptable. Jesus does not grade truth into those bits that are acceptable and those bits that must be rejected because while true, we find them to be threatening or offensive. Truth is truth and Jesus embraces it all.

It was the search for truth that brought me to a crossroads that changed my life forever. I desired simple unfiltered truth. I wanted God’s truth. I spoke with my good wife, Mindy, about this and together we made a decision. We determined to find the truth which is God’s word for us, regardless of the cost. We began by reading the New Testament with the eyes of a child. We cast aside the Mormon lens and ritual and tradition that bars our access to Jesus. We fully understood that in seeking this pure truth, we could lose our children, our parents, brothers and sisters.[2] Literally, we placed everything we ever loved on the sacrificial alter and went before the Lord. We plead for courage, we plead for faith, we plead for truth. More than anything, we begged to know God’s will for us.

Our God is such a Big God. He created the earth, the heavens, the universe. He is bigger than the vastness of space and yet, he took time to answer the pleadings of two insignificant and sinful people who desperately needed to know.

When the love of God fills your heart, you carry a smile on the inside that fights to get. There is so much of Joy. I can’t help but greet everyone with that smile and a kind word. It is so strange to see people, even Walmart People, and greet them with a smile and speak to them as a dear brother or sister and to look on them and feel this new and powerful love.

I worship now with inked, pierced, broken people who labor under the weight of addiction, drugs, alcohol, sex, crime, and every manner of infirmity. The “old me” would have, like the Pharisees of old, quickly judged them and been overly critical of any who associated with them. I would have condemned them as unclean for they are, they truly are. But with a heart filled with love from Jesus, I only see them as creations of God, who he loves and who he wants to reclaim. And, seeing people from a perspective that is perhaps more Christlike, I see myself with increased clarity. I am not one speck cleaner, brighter, more acceptable or more worthy than the very least of these.

This past Sunday, I was sitting in the men’s meditation room at church. Your church has was as well. You know, that small and private room with the water cooled porcelain thinking stool. Another man came in and was unaware that I was in the meditation room. He took care of his business, spat out an ugly curse and left the room. I smiled and wondered if he had perhaps suffered from a little zipper bite. The point is that I smiled. The point is that I felt love for this man who is still a stranger to me. You see, the point is that the “old me” would have felt anger, would have condemned him for having such low self control, would have judged him harshly for bringing such base language into a house of God. The point is… I smiled and felt love. This is new to me!

After completing my meditation, I washed my hands and reached for the paper towel dispenser. It was empty. In an instant, I  fully understood the curse and smiled again as I wiped my hands dry on my pant legs.

When I sleep, I dream of Jesus. When I awake, he fills my mind. When I am quiet, I hear him. When I look, I see him in everything. When I open my mouth, he is on my tongue. I can’t describe it. I can’t explain it. I can only tell you that it is real. That it is more real than anything I have experienced before. I want more. If I lose everything, even you… the wonder of this new life will be worth every cost.

In this series of Coming Out and Going In, I explore the joy and wonder of coming out of those things that bind and going into the arms of Jesus.

My question for you is simply this. Do you want to know God’s whole truth enough to risk everything? I hope you do and I pray that we can walk this wondrous road together.

 

  1. [1]John 8:31, 32 KJV
  2. [2]Matthew 10:35-37 KJV

    35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.

    36 And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household.

    37 He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.

    38 And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.

One thought on “DPR-41 Coming Out and Going In 5 – With Love for My Mormon Friends

Comments are closed.