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Healing from bitterness

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I saw my own progression in this article. When you feel like the church betrays you, it is really tough to heal and move forward. This guy went through a lot and he got through it and through Christ, was made even better. That is the way trials can work sometime. https://bycommonconsent.com/2019/02/26/from-broken-hearts-to-expansive-love/

"My heart, broken as it was, never came back together the same way.  I don’t think that’s possible.  But it has healed.  And in healing, I find that it has grown larger, more inclusive, more willing to accept people than it was before.  This is where I am.  It’s better than where I was when I was certain.  I hope, friend, that you can let me, and my brothers and sisters who are on this journey with me, sit next to you as we all travel the road.  Even if we are not as certain as you about what lies at the end of the road.

I met Jesus on this road. And he was really, really kind."

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This story does not ring true.  Something fishy.

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15 hours ago, longview said:

This story does not ring true.  Something fishy.

Can you be more specific?  What is the "something" you are referring to?

I think it's excellent and spot on.

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Sounds pretty authentic to me.  And I've walked somewhat in the author's shoes.   What a wonderful description!

But yes, I get why others with certainty have a tough time thinking that leaders can mess up that badly; or prefer to be convinced there has to be an unadmitted problem with the story.   I've always been happy for those who see black and white and see their choices as infinitely easier than the choices are for those of us who see gray, and opposing ideas, and even sometimes conflicting good things.  There are just not so few faithful members who are no longer, if they ever were, in that group.

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I think everyone has parts of their world view which are black and white.  As you say, it makes decision making easier and therefore I see it as highly useful in many ways when applied to our own lives. The problems arise, imo, when we apply black and white to other people's behaviour because we can't know in detail enough the standards/world views they hold or the experiences that have led to them as too much of them are internal.

Edited by Calm

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Is there anything in Church procedures that would have been violated by how the author describes what happened?  Leaders having concerns and contacting or communicating with new leaders when asked those concerns, I have heard of this happening lots...and think it helpful in most cases.

If told two different stories from two individuals and both insist are true, are leaders required to treat them as both true in each case?  If not, it is understandable to me that sometimes leaders choose to listen to the less accurate one or chose to believe an interpretation of someone else's behaviour that is not true (being nice to someone can be often misinterpreted as attracted to them, I have had that happen several times in my younger years and know of others experiencing the same).  And judgment based on who one knows better or feels more comfortable with...I do that all the time and see no reason why Church leaders would somehow be protected from making mistakes that way.

Edited by Calm
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I have never felt betrayed by the Church and I have been treated like, you know what, by some leaders who had very low leadership skill. This is probably because I consider the Church to be the Lord's, completely, and some of His servants to be in the process of learning how to act or treat people. There has never been a time when I blamed the Church for what certain people do or did, nor has other people's opinions on matters of history (or my opinion for that matter) ever affected my acceptance of the Church as completely the Lord's. I do not dwell on matters of which I have limited knowledge because that is quite stupid, when you don't have the whole picture, as in, you were not there observing, you have to be careful and reserve making your judgment and particularly when a negative voice is pushing you to decide, now. If you observe a leader make a mistake learn not to do that thing yourself because one day you might be the leader.

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19 minutes ago, CAS said:

I have never felt betrayed by the Church and I have been treated like, you know what, by some leaders who had very low leadership skill. This is probably because I consider the Church to be the Lord's, completely, and some of His servants to be in the process of learning how to act or treat people. There has never been a time when I blamed the Church for what certain people do or did, nor has other people's opinions on matters of history (or my opinion for that matter) ever affected my acceptance of the Church as completely the Lord's. I do not dwell on matters of which I have limited knowledge because that is quite stupid, when you don't have the whole picture, as in, you were not there observing, you have to be careful and reserve making your judgment and particularly when a negative voice is pushing you to decide, now. If you observe a leader make a mistake learn not to do that thing yourself because one day you might be the leader.

Has there ever been something as significant as this individual being required to change his wedding plans and not being able to be sealed for a number of years?  I am curious.

I look on mistakes in my life with leaders as their individual issues, but nothing was more than a minor inconvenience except one thing that was potentially dangerous (violation of Scouting policy requiring more than one adult on a camping trip) that turned out okay (no car breakdown or leader injured...or boy for that matter, all had great fun except for me worrying at home).  I don't have a clue how I would feel if multiple leaders up to the First Presidency were involved in what I saw as a very wrong judgment of myself.

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7 hours ago, ALarson said:

Can you be more specific?  What is the "something" you are referring to?

I think it's excellent and spot on.

Very far from "spot on".

This guy really needed to involve the power of the Atonement in that situation.  He should have "done his duty" and bring the perp and himself to the Bishop's office to resolve the "crazy thing".  Instead, he kept it to himself and allowed the wound to fester and become more gangrenous.

The guy is wimpy snowflake.  It really was no big deal.  But it was not appropriate to allow the adversary to use shame to keep him from "clearing the air".  There were so many details in the story that did not add up.

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14 hours ago, Calm said:

Has there ever been something as significant as this individual being required to change his wedding plans and not being able to be sealed for a number of years?  I am curious.

I look on mistakes in my life with leaders as their individual issues, but nothing was more than a minor inconvenience except one thing that was potentially dangerous (violation of Scouting policy requiring more than one adult on a camping trip) that turned out okay (no car breakdown or leader injured...or boy for that matter, all had great fun except for me worrying at home).  I don't have a clue how I would feel if multiple leaders up to the First Presidency were involved in what I saw as a very wrong judgment of myself.

Well, I feel hesitant to share any of those but I will one. I joined the Church when I was 19 (1974). When I was 20 and serving in the Army in Germany I had been interviewed for and been approved to get my temple recommend and was planning on receiving my endowment in Switzerland. I was called into my Branch President's office and notified that I would not be receiving my recommend due to it had been decided that the brother who had been approved before me, on the same day, would be the last and that they were not sure when they would start approving recommends for servicemembers in the future. I did not receive my recommend at that time and in fact did not receive it until six years later when I was stateside in a civilian status. I did go inactive for a while after this incident, but the incident was not to blame for that IMO.

I was extremely upset about this, but I never brought it up and I never complained, I just went on with my business and tried to not let it bother me. It was very difficult to look the other brother in the eye and not be angry and resentful, but I did my best. As far as my outlook on leadership went, I already knew that they were just men, as I am, and they were probably doing their best and I needed to think about things that edified me and not about whether I thought they had screwed up or not. If this was from the Lord, then I figured it was a test to see what I would do and think. It did not actually hurt me to have to wait and I did not have wedding plans at the time or I would have been able to get it. The fact that I did not have wedding plans was one of the reasons it was able to be withheld. I thought the decision was uninspired and showed a lack of leadership and care and for some reason was specifically aimed at me, but I don't actually know if those thoughts were correct. For one thing I thought, 'I have already been approved, what will it hurt to allow one more? There are no more currently after me.' I suppose this example will not be thought as being as difficult as others, but it was very difficult for a short period of time and being a new member I was somewhat anxious as to what I should expect in the future from leadership at the local level.

That all being said, I should also say that this incident, and many others, never once impacted my knowledge and my testimony that this Church is the legitimate Church and that is because God had verified it to me by His Holy Spirit and He still does. I am unwilling to deny or disbelieve that verification. Even when I was inactive I knew the Church was legitimate and that I was in error.

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10 hours ago, longview said:

Very far from "spot on".

Maybe not for you and I understand if you cannot relate to him, but it is most definitely spot on for many members who are struggling or who have gone through something very close to what he did.

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18 hours ago, CAS said:

I have never felt betrayed by the Church and I have been treated like, you know what, by some leaders who had very low leadership skill. This is probably because I consider the Church to be the Lord's, completely, and some of His servants to be in the process of learning how to act or treat people. There has never been a time when I blamed the Church for what certain people do or did, nor has other people's opinions on matters of history (or my opinion for that matter) ever affected my acceptance of the Church as completely the Lord's. I do not dwell on matters of which I have limited knowledge because that is quite stupid, when you don't have the whole picture, as in, you were not there observing, you have to be careful and reserve making your judgment and particularly when a negative voice is pushing you to decide, now. If you observe a leader make a mistake learn not to do that thing yourself because one day you might be the leader.

Never...is a strong word.  Lucky you!

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15 hours ago, longview said:

Very far from "spot on".

This guy really needed to involve the power of the Atonement in that situation.  He should have "done his duty" and bring the perp and himself to the Bishop's office to resolve the "crazy thing".  Instead, he kept it to himself and allowed the wound to fester and become more gangrenous.

The guy is wimpy snowflake.  It really was no big deal.  But it was not appropriate to allow the adversary to use shame to keep him from "clearing the air".  There were so many details in the story that did not add up.

As someone who has presumably been sexually assaulted multiple times and is intimately familiar with the psychology involved I will bow to your wisdom. Presumably you immediately overcame the feeling of violation and shame and immediately called the Bishop and worked it all out.

Either that or this is some callous victim blaming complete with how the assault is “no big deal”. Walk it off you little pansy snowflake!

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4 hours ago, Jeanne said:

Never...is a strong word.  Lucky you!

You just made me feel stronger, thanks.

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, CAS said:

Well, I feel hesitant to share any of those but I will one.

I appreciate you sharing, I generally enjoy hearing people's stories of their lives when they see themselves as having come out better for them ( as well as humorous and positives experiences in general).

I get the rationale of not allowing young men or women not going on missions or getting married not making temple commitments until they do either, but if someone can be mature enough to be married at that age and that makes it seen as acceptable, I think one can be unmarried and be as least as spiritually mature.

I was very happy for my single and married to nonmember friends and family when those kinds of limitations were lifted.  

Edited by Calm
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10 hours ago, CAS said:

Well, I feel hesitant to share any of those but I will one. I joined the Church when I was 19 (1974). When I was 20 and serving in the Army in Germany I had been interviewed for and been approved to get my temple recommend and was planning on receiving my endowment in Switzerland. I was called into my Branch President's office and notified that I would not be receiving my recommend due to it had been decided that the brother who had been approved before me, on the same day, would be the last and that they were not sure when they would start approving recommends for servicemembers in the future. I did not receive my recommend at that time and in fact did not receive it until six years later when I was stateside in a civilian status. I did go inactive for a while after this incident, but the incident was not to blame for that IMO.

I was extremely upset about this, but I never brought it up and I never complained, I just went on with my business and tried to not let it bother me. It was very difficult to look the other brother in the eye and not be angry and resentful, but I did my best. As far as my outlook on leadership went, I already knew that they were just men, as I am, and they were probably doing their best and I needed to think about things that edified me and not about whether I thought they had screwed up or not. If this was from the Lord, then I figured it was a test to see what I would do and think. It did not actually hurt me to have to wait and I did not have wedding plans at the time or I would have been able to get it. The fact that I did not have wedding plans was one of the reasons it was able to be withheld. I thought the decision was uninspired and showed a lack of leadership and care and for some reason was specifically aimed at me, but I don't actually know if those thoughts were correct. For one thing I thought, 'I have already been approved, what will it hurt to allow one more? There are no more currently after me.' I suppose this example will not be thought as being as difficult as others, but it was very difficult for a short period of time and being a new member I was somewhat anxious as to what I should expect in the future from leadership at the local level.

That all being said, I should also say that this incident, and many others, never once impacted my knowledge and my testimony that this Church is the legitimate Church and that is because God had verified it to me by His Holy Spirit and He still does. I am unwilling to deny or disbelieve that verification. Even when I was inactive I knew the Church was legitimate and that I was in error.

I do appreciate that you shared your story. I am glad this experience did not make you bitter and that you were able to overcome your angry and resentful feelings. Our church leaders are just men and they often make mistakes. Bishops have a very tough job.

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