LookingHard wrote: Katzpur wrote: Joni wrote:
My only issue with JRH's talk is that I have personal knowledge that God doesn't
love me, and there are really no good answers to that. And it's not the kind of thing that you expect to hear addressed from the GC pulpit. But it still stings a little to hear an apostle declare how much God loves His children and know it doesn't apply to me.
Wow! I'm surprised to hear this. Maybe others on the forum know you better and know why you feel this way, but I can't believe that God doesn't love you. Why on earth wouldn't He? That makes me feel so bad!
Joni - sorry you feel that way. I have had times where I very seriously wondered and even flat out doubted if God existed. I still don't know one way or the other, but I am deciding to live as a Christian as I see the essential core teachings are good. I assume God is good and loving, if not we are all damned and that thought is not good for my mental health. So for mental health reasons I choose to believe. So I feel IF there is a God, then he is good and loves me.
I don't know if this helps at all.
I think this is something many of us struggle with, actually. I also went through a phase of agnosticism, near atheism. The only evidence I have for the existence of God is that I don't believe all of this "just happened." I suppose that makes me an intelligent design believer. I usually just say I believe in the Creator-God. I was moved by Pres. Uchtdorf's talk yesterday. I usually dismiss the speakers who talk about God loving us individually (i.e. "God loves you") as parroting. How does someone else know that God loves me? Or anyone else for that matter? Of course Pres. Uchtdorf usually speaks more expansively (as in "God loves us") but this time did go a bit further - but I was very moved at that point.
I believe in the Savior, I suppose as most Christians do. I don't know that there is one, I believe and hope there is one. I feel what I believe is the influence of the Holy Ghost when I think about the atonement of Christ - but admit that could very well be confirmation bias. Likewise, I don't know that God loves me personally, and I don't even necessarily believe he does, yet I somehow hope he does. Could he love us collectively? Sure, I can also believe and hope for that. Meanwhile, as LH says, I'll just try to be a good person and be nice to my fellow humans.
I really, really liked this line from Pres. Uchtdorf (see my signature line):
But do not despair. If you cannot muster faith right now, begin with hope. If you cannot say you know God is there, you can hope that He is. You can desire to believe. That is enough to start.
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."