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Judgmental


LOSTONE

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Last night I attended my bi monthly Bible study group from my recent old church I use to attend. It’s a great group of people and normally a great Bible study group. Been going for years and so enjoyed it. Last night we were reading chapter 1 and 2 of Hebrews and having our typical insightful discussion. However, all I kept hearing is judgmental remarks about different religions and what is wrong with them. The problem is that these remarks were being made based on conclusions, hearsay, conjecture, second hand information and rumors, so on and on. Not one judgmental remark was made based on the actual source. Going to the actual religion or people and talking to them. Like judging a book by it’s cover and then burning it based on the title and other people’s reviews. To me, that is so wrong. I heard so many judgmental remarks. It was ignorant to say the least, but more in tuned with being offended. I am not saying I am going to join the LDS or become Mormon, but I went to the source and before I develop an opinion, I need to explore. I don’t know. I just got offended at how they came to such judgmental remarks and wonder what else they react to this way, myself included. Oh sin, I love the color red. Are they going to conclude I am a devil worshiper or a vampire? Sounds stupid, but how they were talking last night sound the same way. I intend to return to the group next meeting, but if this is how it is going to be from now on, I will make next time my last time. I am not going to associate with people who seem to just bash other people with no actual knowledge of them. To me, it’s wrong.

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There is something else you could do.   You could by asking gentle questions perhaps get them to think more.    Ask the if they would like people of other faiths to talk and think about them this way without having made any effort to talk to them about what they believe.   Ask if they believe that all are children of God, and that He loves all His children, then how can they demonize others who are trying to find and live the way they understand Him to be, even if they disagree with the things they believe?   Ask them whether there is anything in the bible that preaches ugliness to those who believe differently than they do?   Ask them if it isn't true that when people love God, they seek to be kind and patient and longsuffering of actions, behaviors and thoughts of others.   

 

Sometimes a single person can lift a group by pointing out that judgement often comes from fear and not faith.

 

Unfortunately, I won't be surprised if at some point in your interaction with members of the LDS church you were to hear the same sort of judgmental discussions.   Others have reported doing so.   And we all know how Muslims think of Christians in some countries, and how Catholics and Protestants have spent years killing each other in Europe.   Mortals are mortals, whatever their faith.   The LDS church includes all truth in all realms, including the secular one, as well as authority.  We just don't know all truth yet about everything.   It is safe to say that virtually all faiths have some truth.   Any truth that brings mortals to seek and honor God is good and right and worthy of action. 

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Hello Lostone...

I know exactly what you mean... sometimes I find myself being judgmental about someone, not necessarily regarding religion (but that too sometimes) and I always stop myself and remind myself that we are not to judge unrighteously. 

I think most LDS do try and follow a nonjudging attitude... we are counseled to do so, and I appreciate that coming from our leaders. 

Sometimes in class or RS, someone will say something like... well, we have such and such... and almost always I'll speak up and say we need to be more charitable and understanding.  For instance, my nephew's family attends an evangelical church where they are quite boisterous with clapping and jumping up and down, speaking in tongues, etc etc.  I'm just thankful he's joyfully worshipping Jesus and trying to be a good disciple...  I cringe yes, but at least he's bible-based and not off the wall.

 

GG

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Hello Lostone...

I know exactly what you mean... sometimes I find myself being judgmental about someone, not necessarily regarding religion (but that too sometimes) and I always stop myself and remind myself that we are not to judge unrighteously. 

I think most LDS do try and follow a nonjudging attitude... we are counseled to do so, and I appreciate that coming from our leaders. 

Sometimes in class or RS, someone will say something like... well, we have such and such... and almost always I'll speak up and say we need to be more charitable and understanding.  For instance, my nephew's family attends an evangelical church where they are quite boisterous with clapping and jumping up and down, speaking in tongues, etc etc.  I'm just thankful he's joyfully worshipping Jesus and trying to be a good disciple...  I cringe yes, but at least he's bible-based and not off the wall.

 

GG

Sorry if I derail, I'm in a spot similar to Lostone but the opposite.  I just got off the phone with my sister in law.  Her son is going to be getting married and her husband will be officiating it in the temple.  I had to let the cat out about my struggling with my testimony.  Because they'll wonder why we weren't there but on the outside.  She was very loving about the news, she did say a lot that Satan and his minions work hard on people.  I now feel like she thinks I succumbed to that, but she really didn't mean to have this affect on me.  I'm taking it all personal.  Now I'm shaking because things are going to hit the fan.  I did mention that I was trying, but honestly not hard enough.  She mentioned that we must live our religion in order to feel the spirit, so a catch 22.  I am living it on the outside, maybe not doing everything I could such as searching the scriptures.  I mentioned that I read on Fair Mormon support and get help that way and mentioned the Essays on lds.org which she also had never heard of.  How are we to tell people of our struggles if they don't know of what we speak, and we're afraid to say in case it hurts their testimony.  LDS don't judge in a hateful way, but can judge in a very loving way.  I don't know which is worse.   

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Sorry if I derail, I'm in a spot similar to Lostone but the opposite.  I just got off the phone with my sister in law.  Her son is going to be getting married and her husband will be officiating it in the temple.  I had to let the cat out about my struggling with my testimony.  Because they'll wonder why we weren't there but on the outside.  She was very loving about the news, she did say a lot that Satan and his minions work hard on people.  I now feel like she thinks I succumbed to that, but she really didn't mean to have this affect on me.  I'm taking it all personal.  Now I'm shaking because things are going to hit the fan.  I did mention that I was trying, but honestly not hard enough.  She mentioned that we must live our religion in order to feel the spirit, so a catch 22.  I am living it on the outside, maybe not doing everything I could such as searching the scriptures.  I mentioned that I read on Fair Mormon support and get help that way and mentioned the Essays on lds.org which she also had never heard of.  How are we to tell people of our struggles if they don't know of what we speak, and we're afraid to say in case it hurts their testimony.  LDS don't judge in a hateful way, but can judge in a very loving way.  I don't know which is worse.   

 

Tacenda...

Remember the conf talk by (I think) Uchtdorf where he said the solution to a certain behavior/problem was... "Stop It!" 

You said yourself she didn't mean it to be derogatory to you... so, stop it... don't take it personal... and simply be prepared for whatever family reaction will come.   Perhaps it better that the "cat is out" and you can be more at ease... you may even find support and help from family... hopefully understanding.   I will say, Tacenda, that if you hope to find your faith again, you will have to immerse yourself not only in the scriptures, but studying from legitimate sources within the Church (not anti-stuff) those issues that trouble you... answers are there... you need to find them for yourself.  One of my favorite reconversion stories is that of Don Bradley... he really went through a spiritual journey... and it finally lead him back into the Church... my hope is that you can similarly study in earnest for the answers you need... 

 

Prayers...

 

GG

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Sorry if I derail, I'm in a spot similar to Lostone but the opposite.  I just got off the phone with my sister in law.  Her son is going to be getting married and her husband will be officiating it in the temple.  I had to let the cat out about my struggling with my testimony.  Because they'll wonder why we weren't there but on the outside.  She was very loving about the news, she did say a lot that Satan and his minions work hard on people.  I now feel like she thinks I succumbed to that, but she really didn't mean to have this affect on me.  I'm taking it all personal.  Now I'm shaking because things are going to hit the fan.  I did mention that I was trying, but honestly not hard enough.  She mentioned that we must live our religion in order to feel the spirit, so a catch 22.  I am living it on the outside, maybe not doing everything I could such as searching the scriptures.  I mentioned that I read on Fair Mormon support and get help that way and mentioned the Essays on lds.org which she also had never heard of.  How are we to tell people of our struggles if they don't know of what we speak, and we're afraid to say in case it hurts their testimony.  LDS don't judge in a hateful way, but can judge in a very loving way.  I don't know which is worse.   

Tough thing that.

 

Last week, on Facebook of all places, a childhood friend from YW days contacted me. I haven't talked to her in decades, and she asks me if I'm active in "the Church". I say, no, so she asks why, and feeling very awkward and uncomfortable, I just said that I don't believe it and see no reason to participate in something I don't believe.

 

I was thinking, leave it at that but no. She tells me she was excommunicated years ago but was rebaptized and is now active. I don't know what to say to that so, I didn't say anything. She then says that her son was once very angry at "the church" and then one day up and decided to go on a mission and now he is "ok". I said, that's nice.

 

I'm thinking, she's giving me hints, thinking I have been ex'd or did something that would cause me to be ex'd just never confessed, or that I'm angry at "the church". Judging me?

 

I can't make sense of it really, and so, I thought about just un-friending her because I don't know what the angle is. lol. But, I'm just going to let it lie. Maybe won't talk to her again for another few decades. Weird experience, and weird conversation to strike up after you haven't talk to someone for decades.

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Last night I attended my bi monthly Bible study group from my recent old church I use to attend. It’s a great group of people and normally a great Bible study group. Been going for years and so enjoyed it. Last night we were reading chapter 1 and 2 of Hebrews and having our typical insightful discussion. However, all I kept hearing is judgmental remarks about different religions and what is wrong with them. The problem is that these remarks were being made based on conclusions, hearsay, conjecture, second hand information and rumors, so on and on. Not one judgmental remark was made based on the actual source. Going to the actual religion or people and talking to them. Like judging a book by it’s cover and then burning it based on the title and other people’s reviews. To me, that is so wrong. I heard so many judgmental remarks. It was ignorant to say the least, but more in tuned with being offended. I am not saying I am going to join the LDS or become Mormon, but I went to the source and before I develop an opinion, I need to explore. I don’t know. I just got offended at how they came to such judgmental remarks and wonder what else they react to this way, myself included. Oh sin, I love the color red. Are they going to conclude I am a devil worshiper or a vampire? Sounds stupid, but how they were talking last night sound the same way. I intend to return to the group next meeting, but if this is how it is going to be from now on, I will make next time my last time. I am not going to associate with people who seem to just bash other people with no actual knowledge of them. To me, it’s wrong.

Often people judge, because they feel it justified in their own beliefs. It is a common flaw of the human condition. No Church has ever been sinless in this respect, all the time. Too often we look to others in this aspect instead of to Christ, whom should always be our example. "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone"....this is why I keep my hands in my pocket.
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It's so hard when we feel loved ones are disappointed in our choices, or how they might think you left a religion for something different, without really knowing the situation, like in Saemo's predicament.  I guess with time it'll all work out.  I know that some EV's tell some ex-LDS turned EV, to just love their families.  So lostone, maybe try to show a lot of love towards them, are there some Bible scriptures that can be you back up?  How Christian is it when we treat humans this way?  I can see how some would turn away from all things Christian and lean toward Buddhism real quickly. 

 

GG, I know what you say for me to do will help me stay in the church and come to belief, but would that be the case with every person in religion, if they study Catholicism and delve in it and have faith it's true would it do the same thing?  Makes you wonder, but I see how it is the religion of my heritage and that's a good reason to stick with it instead of delving into another religion.  

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It's so hard when we feel loved ones are disappointed in our choices, or how they might think you left a religion for something different, without really knowing the situation, like in Saemo's predicament.  I guess with time it'll all work out.  I know that some EV's tell some ex-LDS turned EV, to just love their families.  So lostone, maybe try to show a lot of love towards them, are there some Bible scriptures that can be you back up?  How Christian is it when we treat humans this way?  I can see how some would turn away from all things Christian and lean toward Buddhism real quickly. 

 

GG, I know what you say for me to do will help me stay in the church and come to belief, but would that be the case with every person in religion, if they study Catholicism and delve in it and have faith it's true would it do the same thing?  Makes you wonder, but I see how it is the religion of my heritage and that's a good reason to stick with it instead of delving into another religion.  

 

While I've not had the crisis of faith that you are having. I really do believe we all see through that glass darkly. All I can say is keep working at holding onto what amount of faith you do have, be it a little or a lot. Study, pray, study and pray some more do every thing in your power to exercise and thus strengthen your faith.

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It's so hard when we feel loved ones are disappointed in our choices, or how they might think you left a religion for something different, without really knowing the situation, like in Saemo's predicament.  I guess with time it'll all work out.  I know that some EV's tell some ex-LDS turned EV, to just love their families.  So lostone, maybe try to show a lot of love towards them, are there some Bible scriptures that can be you back up?  How Christian is it when we treat humans this way?  I can see how some would turn away from all things Christian and lean toward Buddhism real quickly. 

 

GG, I know what you say for me to do will help me stay in the church and come to belief, but would that be the case with every person in religion, if they study Catholicism and delve in it and have faith it's true would it do the same thing?  Makes you wonder, but I see how it is the religion of my heritage and that's a good reason to stick with it instead of delving into another religion.

There was a guy, years ago on the exmormon forums, who claimed he had made it a personal goal to visit as many churches as he could to test if he felt the spirit in any of them, none of them, or all of them. He said he felt the spirit in all of them.

I believe without a doubt that God led me to where I am. I know LDS converts who have the exact same conviction.

My own personal view is, all people of faith have the same desire, to understand the will of God for themselves, and follow where God leads. Everyone has their own journey. People have to be allowed the freedom to follow their own conscience. Pray for guidance, and patience.

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I read the additional replies to this post. Again, thank you all for your replies. I seek insights from other points of view and there are a lot of good ones here. Defiantly has help me to better understand the people I am engaged with and how to properly respond to them.

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