1. Do you have faith in and a testimony of God the Eternal Father?
My answer is YES.
The question is really do I believe in god, however I define him, and somehow have faith in this being. A 'Testimony' is my witness of that being: really the way in which I have made a conclusion to believe/have faith in god.
The question is NOT, do I know that God is exactly as the LDS Standard Definition of God (SDOG) is defined:
- He is an exalted man who once was man just like us but is now God and was always God from everlasting to everlasting unchangable and is not progressing. He has a corporal body, inseparably connected to his Spirit, yet can be omnipresent -- that is, everywhere at the same time. He is all-powerful, all-knowing, and all-good, yet allows evil to happen to people through someone else's free choice. He is the Father of our spirits, has at least one or many wives, yet does not allow any mention of our spiritual Mother in Heaven to in any way share glory with Him.
What I do believe is that there IS a power out there, greater than ourselves, to which we can pray and turn over our problems to. I have come to accept fully is that the power of the universe, the power of god, is embodied in the natural laws of the Universe, as clearly laid out in Section 88, and that 'a god', is a being that is fully in harmony with this power. Jesus referred many times to this concept of god, and the scriptures support it. Does this mean there is a specific being out there called "Elohim"? Well, when we translate the word "Elohim" it means "the gods" (SDOG spelled backwards), which the Jews somehow justify as not being plural, but it really is.
So who is God to me? I have felt a presence when praying or meditating many times in my life. I have felt at times that someone is so connected with the power of the universe that their words are absolutely scripture to me. I have seen that selfless service is to be a god to those served. I have seen judgment done in righteousness and mercy that demonstrate the power of god. I have observed the heavens, the work of creation, and all of it testifies to me of 'god', not the illogical and mythical one of the scripture, but rather, the amazing transcendence of the power of the universe and the idea that an enlightened soul can be one with that power in a moment.
Is god my heavenly father? I would like to think so, I would like to believe that there was a pre-mortal existence, but I simply don't know. and I believe being honest is no fault. Faith is the ability to trust in something when I don't know. So, my faith and testimony witnesses of amazing coincidences in my life that show the hand of a higher power. I don't know if this is confirmation bias, and I really don't care if it is. To say "heavenly father" is symbolic to me that there is someone I can pray to that will listen. It probably starts with my non-conscious self, but who is to say that that isn't 'god' to me? Whether there is a separate being called "God the Father" out there, I may not know for sure, but I know that the interface to that being is right here inside of me. Because prayer is something hard to do when it prays to oneself, "I have learned to call thee Father, Through thy Spirit from on high". And although the "key of knowledge" was restored, it's so ambiguously stated that I still don't know why. And you know? I don't think it matters that I don't know -- knowledge is not faith.
And that's why I have faith in and a testimony of God the Eternal Father.