This story really touched me

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DarkJedi
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This story really touched me

Post by DarkJedi » 19 Aug 2014, 20:51

I can see some Mormons I know having very similar experiences, and my own experiences with prayer have been similar. I thought about posting it on the thread about prayer, but decided it deserves its own. This line in particular jumped out at me:
I guess being told you are "God's chosen' will make you do anything.
Here's the link: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/karl-wild ... lp00000592
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

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intothelight
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Re: This story really touched me

Post by intothelight » 19 Aug 2014, 23:52

A great article. I do agree here. I think everyone has prayed to God for something that was right - and not gotten it. And not something that was just 'not right for us at the time'. I have come to the conclusion that God may be in control, but the times that He intervenes are extremely rare. Not necessarily because He doesn't want to, but maybe God can't control consequences. God couldn't stop the man's father from beating the boy. He couldn't force his grandparents to give him a home away from the abuse. I think He does help us deal with the consequences. But he doesn't go around waving a magic wand to make consequences disappear.

I also agree on some of the passages in the old testament. That isn't the God I know. I'll be the first one to admit I could be wrong. Maybe it's a side of God I don't know yet. Though I must admit, if I am wrong, I still don't want to get to know that part of God.

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DarkJedi
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Re: This story really touched me

Post by DarkJedi » 20 Aug 2014, 06:08

I have reached a similar conclusion, Intothelight. I have come to recognize that God will not interfere with free agency, whether it's Bob beating this boy or Hitler killing six million of God's chosen people. I have hope that God can help us deal with the consequences but I do not "know" that He always does.

I realize that those few verses from the OT were used to make a point and they are of the more harsh variety. I am under the belief that you can prove almost anything you want by using scripture albeit sometimes it has to be taken out of context and and stretched and spun. That said, more than once during the darkest part of my faith crisis I said that the type of God described there is not one I want to share eternity with and that I didn't know why anyone would.
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

My Introduction

Roy
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Joined: 07 Oct 2010, 14:16
Location: Pacific Northwest

Re: This story really touched me

Post by Roy » 20 Aug 2014, 08:36

On the radio this morning was a story of a woman's daughter who had been abducted for 2.5 years and how God orchestrated a reunion. It made me think of this post and how people seem to be sharing the super good happenings and then giving God the credit. Surely there are scores of missing children who remain missing.

Our theology says that God can't interfere with free agency.

Our theology says that disease, death, and famine are natural consequences of a fallen world and that God is constrained by these conditions. You could even make the case that the fallen world is the result of Adam & Eve's free agency decision to partake of the fruit. Could God honor free agency but supercede the consequences thereof?

But why then are the scriptures and church histories full of stories where this does not seem to be the case. God is seen to intervene.

Our modern church culture seems to be permeated with such stories. Enough so that it makes one an outlier to strictly believe in our theology as outlined above. Our God is a God of miracles - except when He isn't. Then we will fall back to the above explanations.
"It is not so much the pain and suffering of life which crushes the individual as it is its meaninglessness and hopelessness." C. A. Elwood

“It is not the function of religion to answer all the questions about God’s moral government of the universe, but to give one courage, through faith, to go on in the face of questions he never finds the answer to in his present status.” TPC: Harold B. Lee 223

"I struggle now with establishing my faith that God may always be there, but may not always need to intervene" Heber13

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SamBee
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Re: This story really touched me

Post by SamBee » 20 Aug 2014, 09:51

DarkJedi wrote:I can see some Mormons I know having very similar experiences, and my own experiences with prayer have been similar. I thought about posting it on the thread about prayer, but decided it deserves its own. This line in particular jumped out at me:
I guess being told you are "God's chosen' will make you do anything.
Here's the link: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/karl-wild ... lp00000592
Flattery will get you everywhere with me, as they say.
DASH1730 "An Area Authority...[was] asked...who...would go to the Telestial kingdom. His answer: "murderers, adulterers and a lot of surprised Mormons!"'
1ST PRES 1978 "[LDS] believe...there is truth in many religions and philosophies...good and great religious leaders... have raised the spiritual, moral, and ethical awareness of their people. When we speak of The [LDS] as the only true church...it is...authorized to administer the ordinances...by Jesus Christ... we do not mean... it is the only teacher of truth."

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mom3
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Re: This story really touched me

Post by mom3 » 20 Aug 2014, 11:27

Roy wrote
Our modern church culture seems to be permeated with such stories. Enough so that it makes one an outlier to strictly believe in our theology as outlined above. Our God is a God of miracles - except when He isn't. Then we will fall back to the above explanations.
I too have a hard time with the overflow of miracle stories we have. I actually think they lead to depression and discouragement. I don't want us to be a doom and gloom - God doesn't care people - but the magic wand God we create isn't fair either. To him or to us. It makes him look like a bad guy when he doesn't come through and it makes us feel like he isn't real on our end.

I think it also robs us of the miracles we are supposed to create or be apart of in others lives. My theology matches the one you posted Roy - a God who did create this world and the opportunities it was capable of. It also included pain, loss, tragedy, heart break, etc. To me it really is like sending a child to school. While they are at school, the outcome of the school experience is up to the child. It's not that the parent doesn't care, it's that it's time for the child to begin to direct their life. And just like school, parents pop in once and a while, for a field trip, class room helper, or just once a year conference. Everything else is on the future adult in that room.

Because of this theology I feel more responsible to do than to wait for him to do. It's not that I don't have a list of euphoric wishes I would love him to fix/deal with/give. But there are no guarantee's so I better get up and make something happen.
"I stayed because it was God and Jesus Christ that I wanted to follow and be like, not individual human beings." Chieko Okazaki Dialogue interview

"I am coming to envision a new persona for the Church as humble followers of Jesus Christ....Joseph and his early followers came forth with lots of triumphalist rhetoric, but I think we need a new voice, one of humility, friendship and service. We should teach people to believe in God because it will soften their hearts and make them more willing to serve." - Richard Bushman

Curt Sunshine
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Re: This story really touched me

Post by Curt Sunshine » 20 Aug 2014, 14:17

We blame or credit God with a lot of things, but, like mom3 implies, that robs us of the recognition of the potential power in sayings like, "God is love," "Ye are gods and children of the most high God," "Build up the kingdom of God on Earth," etc. We blame or credit God, but we don't take seriously the implications for this life in the belief that we are supposed to be and become gods.
I see through my glass, darkly - as I play my saxophone in harmony with the other instruments in God's orchestra. (h/t Elder Joseph Wirthlin)

Even if people view many things differently, the core Gospel principles (LOVE; belief in the unseen but hoped; self-reflective change; symbolic cleansing; striving to recognize the will of the divine; never giving up) are universal.

"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." H. L. Mencken

Roy
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Location: Pacific Northwest

Re: This story really touched me

Post by Roy » 20 Aug 2014, 14:49

Ray DeGraw wrote:We blame or credit God with a lot of things, but, like mom3 implies, that robs us of the recognition of the potential power in sayings like, "God is love," "Ye are gods and children of the most high God," "Build up the kingdom of God on Earth," etc. We blame or credit God, but we don't take seriously the implications for this life in the belief thaqt we are supposed to be and become gods.
Ironically that dovetails nicely with the final sentences from the story.
I did have one final prayer. I prayed that I would turn out nothing like Bob. I wanted never to fly into a blind rage and hurt someone. I wanted to learn and travel and be nothing like this evil man.

The prayer was answered.

I answered it myself.
"It is not so much the pain and suffering of life which crushes the individual as it is its meaninglessness and hopelessness." C. A. Elwood

“It is not the function of religion to answer all the questions about God’s moral government of the universe, but to give one courage, through faith, to go on in the face of questions he never finds the answer to in his present status.” TPC: Harold B. Lee 223

"I struggle now with establishing my faith that God may always be there, but may not always need to intervene" Heber13

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DarkJedi
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Re: This story really touched me

Post by DarkJedi » 20 Aug 2014, 15:52

I am in some respects trying to become more like God, Ray, and I believe in following the Savior's (God's) example. I think we can become more like God without necessarily believing in myriad little miracles or even believing God actually answers prayers. I know some very nice non-religious people as well.

I think the guy in the story exemplifies the danger in the belief that God is involved in everything - he now apparently doesn't believe in God at all. Not all of our Christian brothers and sisters believe God is intimately involved in our lives and few outside Christianity do. I think it's dangerous for people to stand up in testimony meeting or Sunday School and talk about this stuff - my faith crisis "ended" differently that the guy in the story, but his is an all too common outcome that could be avoided.
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

My Introduction

Curt Sunshine
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Joined: 21 Oct 2008, 20:24

Re: This story really touched me

Post by Curt Sunshine » 20 Aug 2014, 16:36

I agree, DJ - but I also am okay with some people seeing "little miracles" from God in ways that I don't.

I understand the difficulties with that type of view, but I can't rail against it. (Not saying you are railing, just to be clear.).
I see through my glass, darkly - as I play my saxophone in harmony with the other instruments in God's orchestra. (h/t Elder Joseph Wirthlin)

Even if people view many things differently, the core Gospel principles (LOVE; belief in the unseen but hoped; self-reflective change; symbolic cleansing; striving to recognize the will of the divine; never giving up) are universal.

"For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong." H. L. Mencken

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