I have been feeling really sad these past few days. It actually has nothing to do with depression but with the things going on in the LDS community at the moment. I am not even going to get into it because this is not just a one time problem, it is happening more and more about simple things that require basic faith. I am sad because so many seem to forget that Jesus Christ is the head of this church and He leads HIS church through a prophet and apostles. He is the one who makes the calls.
Over the past few days I thought a lot about everything that was happening on social media and how certain subjects were addressed. I was able to tell pretty quickly who had a strong testimony of the gospel and who did not. Who was truly trying to understand and was actually listening and who was not. It really is clear and yet very frightening at the same time.
As I was sitting here thinking, I realized that it really just comes down to the basics. You either have a testimony of the gospel or you don’t. You either have a testimony that our prophet Thomas S. Monson and the twelve apostles are called of God or you don’t. You either believe that our prophet receives revelation to guide and lead our church or you don’t. There is no gray anymore. It is truly just black or white.
It is all addressed and foreseen in the scriptures. On one of the Facebook pages someone posted the words of Nephi:
1 And now it came to pass that after I, Nephi, had made an end of speaking to my brethren, behold they said unto me: Thou hast declared unto us hard things, more than we are able to bear.
2 And it came to pass that I said unto them that I knew that I had spoken hard things against the wicked, according to the truth; and the righteous have I justified, and testified that they should be lifted up at the last day; wherefore, the guilty taketh the truth to be hard, for it cutteth them to the very center.
3 And now my brethren, if ye were righteous and were willing to hearken to the truth, and give heed unto it, that ye might walk uprightly before God, then ye would not murmur because of the truth, and say: Thou speakest hard things against us. (1 Nephi 16:1-3)
It gave me comfort despite the fact that it is actually really sad, but it reminded me that all this is happening because people are not willing to hold on to the basics, they want to change something into something they want, not what the Lord wants. They want Heavenly Father to bow down to their desires. I know those, who are spoken of in the above, will deny it, they will fight and argue about it, but it doesn’t change that it is the truth.
As I was doing some reading for my religion class I came across a few verses that also spoke directly about the things happening in our world right now. In 1 Timothy 6:
1 Let as many servants as are under the yoke count their own masters worthy of all honour, that the name of God and his doctrine be not blasphemed.
2 And they that have believing masters, let them not despise them, because they are brethren; but rather do them service, because they are faithful and beloved, partakers of the benefit. These things teach and exhort.
3 If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness;
4 He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings,
5 Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself.
6 But godliness with contentment is great gain.
I love when I read in the scriptures, especially at times when I feel sad and need comfort, and come across something that speaks exactly about the things I am wondering about. I love that God knew all this years ago. He knew that we would need these exact words in our day to be guided and comforted, knowing that all this is happening for a reason and it is up to us to stay faithful despite all the trouble and sadness around us.
As I said before, it truly comes down to the basics. We need to make a decision now what side we are on. As I said earlier, there is no grey area anymore. We either stand with our church leaders and the Lord or we don’t. That’s it. I don’t even need to add anything to it. I know that I want to stay with the Lord. I will also stand with our church leaders because I know they are called of God (not by man) and directed and guided by God. He will not let them lead us astray and so we have to trust and believe that this is what Heavenly Father wants. We even have simple solutions if we have our doubts because we can go to Heavenly Father directly and ask Him in prayer and study the scriptures to get answers. It’s all in those books, we just need to look for it. Satan is more aggressive than ever. He will try to lead as away by making these doubts bigger by questioning everything, and by telling us our leaders are not inspired by God but make their own decisions. He is sneaky and will not let go, especially when he sees how people are listening to him.
When people go against my church or my leaders, I feel personally attacked because this church is my life and I love it. I love these leaders too and will continue to do so because I know in my heart that they are truly disciples of God. So yes I tend to take that a bit personal because just like I would defend my family against anyone who tries to attack and harm them, I feel very protective of these leaders and the gospel. I stand firm in my faith, and will continue to do so because I know it would be wrong to support anyone or anything else. Of course we all have times of doubts, but that’s when we need to look for the answers by quietly searching within ourselves, by praying to our Heavenly Father and by searching the scriptures. Nothing in the Internet, no media, nobody around us can give us the testimony and the confirmation and the answers we are seeking. No one but God can tell us that what we are receiving, hearing or reading is true. That is something we have to do for ourselves. Nobody can do that for us. We either want to believe or we don’t. We either want to find out the truth or we don’t. We either are willing to listen or we are not. God is in charge and everything happens because He wants it to happen. The world is not going to change that. Satan can try to influence, lead people away and get more powerful, but he will never be able to change that. And he will never be more powerful than our Heavenly Father. I believe that with all my heart. It is like President Dieter F. Uchtdorf said: “Doubt your doubts before your doubt your faith!”