I wonder if Mormon culture, particularly in the inter-mountain area, is missing the boat a bit when it comes to what constitutes righteousness. We seem to place great emphasis on "outward" signs of righteousness like:
- the word of wisdom
- hometeaching numbers
- anonymous service
- a personal relationship with Jesus Christ
God clearly gave us the litmus test of discipleship in John 13:
34 A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.
35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.
As I've gotten older, I've become much more tolerant of people's outward behaviors and much more concerned with their "love one to another." Maybe I'm headed for trouble, but I'd much rather associate with a swearing, drinking friend who has love and kindness in their heart, than the "righteous" ward gossip. I wonder if we are not headed for similar trouble as the pharisees who sought after the praise of men and recognition for their "righteousness."