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MormonVideoGame

"Waiting for My Testimony" by Carolyn LeDuc

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I think there is a reasonable chance that gods exists. Star Trek gods that are powerful and immortal. Perhaps benevolent gods that bring frozen bodies back to life. I hope someday humans become god-like creatures. However, I honestly don't see any reason or evidence to believe that gods created our world. It's possible that gods listen to our prayers, but Occam's razor is one of my principles. 

 Elder Todd Christofferson said in General Conference "Faith will not come from the study of ancient texts...It will not even come from witnessing miracles", but during Fast and Testimony Meeting I always hear stories about some miraculous event that affected someone's life. Most devout Christians and LDS I know (in person) believe because of some miracle, or simply because their life is better. So I wonder, how exactly does a testimony work? by finding patterns? If you are happier it means the church is true for you?  

 

Quote

Exultant with joy as I closed with Moroni’s farewell and amen, I scrambled to my knees.

Brimming with anticipation, I posed my question: Was the Book of Mormon true? As I waited for a response, a cricket chirped. The air conditioner switched on. My watch intrusively ticked off the seconds as they passed. There was no burning bosom sensation, no chorus of angels, no flash of knowing. Nothing.

I was somewhat perplexed. “Do I just need to read the book again?” I thought to myself. “I guess it couldn’t hurt.”

Three months later, again finishing with Moroni’s testimony, I leapt to the floor, doubly sure I’d done my part, doubly sure an answer would come. But my hopes were disappointed when, as before, my inquiry was met with silence. Unsure of what else to do, I got off my knees and started over. Again. But even after a third reading, there came no reply. I was confused. Where was the answer I’d been promised?

Not to be defeated, I picked up my scriptures, now with a fraying front cover, full of red highlighted verses and with random pages beginning to slip from the binding. “Okay,” I said to myself, “once more.”

When at last I finished the book for the fourth time in a 12-month period, I didn’t immediately drop to my knees. I sat for some time, reflecting on the year. Truly, it had been a remarkable period of growth and change. I smiled, noting to myself that it was common these days for me to feel happy.

I thought about friendships I had formed with wonderful peers who strengthened my faith. I thought about how my familyrelationships had taken a dramatic turn for the better. I hadn’t fought with my siblings in months, and my parents and I seemed to communicate with amazing ease. What’s more, schoolwork seemed less stressful, odd jobs had been available to provide extra income, and even my physical fitness had improved.

But the most significant change had been in my spirit. I now looked forward to attending church, gladly paid tithes, fasted and prayed with much greater faith, and could list many times when the Spirit had prompted me to avoid danger, express kindness, or voice truth.

All told, there was little in my life that wasn’t drastically better now than it had been just 12 months earlier. “That’s so cool!” I said out loud, slipping to my knees.

Bowing my head, I couldn’t even ask the question. “I get it,” I said to the Lord. “I get it. The truth of this book isn’t always manifest in burning bosoms and visions of angels; it’s manifest in the lives of the people who read it and put it to use. I don’t need to ask anymore if this book is true. I experience its truth every day I live its teachings.”

This wasn’t the answer I had anticipated when I first set out to put Moroni’s promise to the test. It was far better. The Lord could have given me a single flash of confirming peace. Instead, He had given me a whole year of it.

https://www.lds.org/new-era/2010/02/waiting-for-my-testimony?lang=eng&_r=1

Edited by MormonVideoGame

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I'd agree in part with the New Era quote, in that we gain a testimony of righteousness by living righteously.

Edited by Meadowchik

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Such a fragile thing.  Supposing the 12 months had gone differently.  Instead of making more money, she had lost her job.  Instead of expanded friendships, her relationships had become strained, or ended.  Instead of improved "physical fitness"--she had gained weight.  

The reasonable reader, following her logic, would conclude it proved the book wasn't what it claimed to be. 

--Erik

_____________________________________

Once my lover, now my friend
What a cruel thing to pretend
What a cunning way to condescend
Once my lover, and now my friend

--Fiona Apple, "Shadowboxer"

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9 hours ago, MormonVideoGame said:

I think there is a reasonable chance that gods exists. Star Trek gods that are powerful and immortal. Perhaps benevolent gods that bring frozen bodies back to life. I hope someday humans become god-like creatures. However, I honestly don't see any reason or evidence to believe that gods created our world. It's possible that gods listen to our prayers, but Occam's razor is one of my principles. 

 Elder Todd Christofferson said in General Conference "Faith will not come from the study of ancient texts...It will not even come from witnessing miracles", but during Fast and Testimony Meeting I always hear stories about some miraculous event that affected someone's life. Most devout Christians and LDS I know (in person) believe because of some miracle, or simply because their life is better. So I wonder, how exactly does a testimony work? by finding patterns? If you are happier it means the church is true for you?  

 

https://www.lds.org/new-era/2010/02/waiting-for-my-testimony?lang=eng&_r=1

Star Trek gods are jerks. I do not want to become like them.

It is no surprise Gene Roddenberry was an atheist if those are the gods he imagines. Even the supposedly 'benevolent' ones are irresponsible and morally bankrupt.

Edited by The Nehor

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1 hour ago, Five Solas said:

Such a fragile thing.  Supposing the 12 months had gone differently.  Instead of making more money, she had lost her job.  Instead of expanded friendships, her relationships had become strained, or ended.  Instead of improved "physical fitness"--she had gained weight.

The reasonable reader, following her logic, would conclude it proved the book wasn't what it claimed to be.


It's not often that you and I are in agreement on something.  But I agree with you on this in part.

Now, that's not to say that accepting Christ and his gospel into your life has no effect.  It certainly can change the course of your life.
Her statements of better relationships with people could easily be such an effect.  The effects of carrying the spirit of the Lord with you ARE recognizable.  And I think that is what she is saying.

But her statements that "odd jobs had been available to provide extra income, and even my physical fitness had improved" seem a bit of a reach.  And I also agree that it is just as likely for many people as they move towards God that the efforts of the adversary are seen to increase in their lives.
The stories like that are just as numerous.

 

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24 minutes ago, The Nehor said:

Star Trek gods are jerks. I do not want to become like them.

It is no surprise Gene Roddenberry was an atheist if those are the gods he imagines. Even the supposedly 'benevolent' ones are irresponsible and morally bankrupt.

Well, there is that persistent urban legend that Roddenberry was LDS...

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16 minutes ago, JLHPROF said:

Well, there is that persistent urban legend that Roddenberry was LDS...

I think those are called 'alternative facts' now.

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After all is said and done though..Moroni's promise failed.  When one cannot or feels like they cannot change..their thoughts..their lives and the very reason of their existence, they will find many things in their world to sustain, remain..and justify that the promise was not realized.  In the church, if one does not have a testimony, they feel failure so anything else will do.

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14 minutes ago, Jeanne said:

After all is said and done though..Moroni's promise failed.  When one cannot or feels like they cannot change..their thoughts..their lives and the very reason of their existence, they will find many things in their world to sustain, remain..and justify that the promise was not realized.  In the church, if one does not have a testimony, they feel failure so anything else will do.

I am not convinced Moroni's promise fails.  I think more often than not we fail to meet the requirements.

Moroni 10:3 Behold, I would exhort you that when ye shall read these things, if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them, that ye would remember how merciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men, from the creation of Adam even down until the time that ye shall receive these things, and ponder it in your hearts.
4 And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.
5 And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things.


 

Edited by JLHPROF

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4 minutes ago, JLHPROF said:

I am not convinced Moroni's promise fails.  I think more often than not we fail to meet the requirements.

Moroni 10:3 Behold, I would exhort you that when ye shall read these things, if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them, that ye would remember how merciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men, from the creation of Adam even down until the time that ye shall receive these things, and ponder it in your hearts.
4 And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.
5 And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things.


 

Oh...I know...the one seeking the testimony will always be at fault.

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2 minutes ago, Jeanne said:

Oh...I know...the one seeking the testimony will always be at fault.

Agreed. ;) 

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42 minutes ago, Jeanne said:

Oh...I know...the one seeking the testimony will always be at fault.

Why jump straight to "fault"?
Progress takes time.  No fault is implied because progression hasn't reached a certain point.
I guess I kind of implied a "fault" with my comment.  But when I say "we fail to meet the requirements" I mean that we just haven't got there yet.

Edited by JLHPROF

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13 hours ago, MormonVideoGame said:

I think there is a reasonable chance that gods exists. Star Trek gods that are powerful and immortal. Perhaps benevolent gods that bring frozen bodies back to life. I hope someday humans become god-like creatures. However, I honestly don't see any reason or evidence to believe that gods created our world. It's possible that gods listen to our prayers, but Occam's razor is one of my principles. 

 Elder Todd Christofferson said in General Conference "Faith will not come from the study of ancient texts...It will not even come from witnessing miracles", but during Fast and Testimony Meeting I always hear stories about some miraculous event that affected someone's life. Most devout Christians and LDS I know (in person) believe because of some miracle, or simply because their life is better. So I wonder, how exactly does a testimony work? by finding patterns? If you are happier it means the church is true for you? 

https://www.lds.org/new-era/2010/02/waiting-for-my-testimony?lang=eng&_r=1

I think where faith requires no assumptions (only a desire to believe and experiment, obtain knowledge and further apply it), the most reasonable hypothesis for explaining how a testimony works is “faith.” It works both as single and long term experiences.

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6 hours ago, JLHPROF said:

Well, there is that persistent urban legend that Roddenberry was LDS...

Are you sure you aren't thinking of Glen Larson, the creator of "Battlestar Galactica" who was LDS?

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16 hours ago, MormonVideoGame said:

I think there is a reasonable chance that gods exists. Star Trek gods that are powerful and immortal. Perhaps benevolent gods that bring frozen bodies back to life. I hope someday humans become god-like creatures. However, I honestly don't see any reason or evidence to believe that gods created our world. It's possible that gods listen to our prayers, but Occam's razor is one of my principles. 

 Elder Todd Christofferson said in General Conference "Faith will not come from the study of ancient texts...It will not even come from witnessing miracles", but during Fast and Testimony Meeting I always hear stories about some miraculous event that affected someone's life. Most devout Christians and LDS I know (in person) believe because of some miracle, or simply because their life is better. So I wonder, how exactly does a testimony work? by finding patterns? If you are happier it means the church is true for you?  

 

https://www.lds.org/new-era/2010/02/waiting-for-my-testimony?lang=eng&_r=1

Honestly, if the Church makes someone "happier", then why wouldn't they want to be a member?  

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9 hours ago, Jeanne said:

Oh...I know...the one seeking the testimony will always be at fault.

We do tend to expect instant and unmistakable results, don't we.

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" He will manifest the truthfulness ..."     I must have missed the part that said ' immediately '  and also ' the same way for everyone ' 

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2 hours ago, strappinglad said:

" He will manifest the truthfulness ..."     I must have missed the part that said ' immediately '  and also ' the same way for everyone ' 

That is why I hate the burning in the bosom lessons.  That was a specific promise to Oliver directly I seem to recall.  

Joseph Smith taught that the Holy Ghost has no effect except pure intelligence.  Warm fuzzies don't fall under pure intelligence (the mind) but under emotion.  Telling people that if they feel really good inside it's the Holy Ghost is not doctrinally correct that I am aware of.

Edited by JLHPROF

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6 hours ago, cinepro said:

Are you sure you aren't thinking of Glen Larson, the creator of "Battlestar Galactica" who was LDS?

If you could fly to Kobol in the twinkling of an eye

And fly your warship onward into the darkened sky

Do you think that you could ever through all eternity

Evade those frakking toasters chasing after thee?

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8 minutes ago, JLHPROF said:

That is why I hate the burning in the bosom lessons.  That was a specific promise to Oliver directly I seem to recall.  

Joseph Smith taught that the Holy Ghost has no effect except pure intelligence.  Warm fuzzies don't fall under pure intelligence (the mind) but under emotion.  Telling people that if they feel really good inside it's the Holy Ghost is not doctrinally correct that I am aware of.

It is one method and I have felt it but there are others. I would say other ways are better too.

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12 hours ago, ERayR said:

We do tend to expect instant and unmistakable results, don't we.

It was a promise.

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43 minutes ago, Jeanne said:

It was a promise.

Moroni 10:4

 And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.

Where does it say immediate and unmistakable? 

What were you expecting?

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Just now, ERayR said:

Moroni 10:4

 And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.

Where does it say immediate and unmistakable? 

What were you expecting?

WE are not talking about me.  We are talking about this woman who did not get the testsimony as stated but from her quality of life.  I received a testimonial from the HG..I loved the Book of Mormon...which hurt me deeply when I found out the truth of the origins and JS.  I know the spirit from which you speak...but I have had that same experience since I left.  So..go figure. 

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On 2/16/2017 at 9:10 AM, JLHPROF said:


It's not often that you and I are in agreement on something.  But I agree with you on this in part.
...
 

Appreciate you saying so.  I will just add what I typed was from some experience.  I wasn't a great Mormon, but in the 12 months after I became a Christian, I really did lose my job and I lost the girl I had imagined I was was going to marry.  Moments therein where I felt I'd gone from frying pan to fire.  If my assurance had been founded along the lines described above--well, I would have run straight back to my former LDS bishop & repented.

Not what happened.  The change was much deeper than that.

:0)

--Erik

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On 2/16/2017 at 10:23 AM, Five Solas said:

Such a fragile thing.  Supposing the 12 months had gone differently.  Instead of making more money, she had lost her job.  Instead of expanded friendships, her relationships had become strained, or ended.  Instead of improved "physical fitness"--she had gained weight.  

The reasonable reader, following her logic, would conclude it proved the book wasn't what it claimed to be. 

--Erik

_____________________________________

Once my lover, now my friend
What a cruel thing to pretend
What a cunning way to condescend
Once my lover, and now my friend

--Fiona Apple, "Shadowboxer"

Seems as if she already had a testimony.

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