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General Authorities have long told us, even warned us. Do we agree, are we convinced?


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Many General Authorities for the last two hundred years, have proclaimed to us, or warned us, that we must both, live and share our testimonies, or lose them. I can remember when President Spencer W. Kimball, (the Prophet when I joined the Church) warned that missing too many Sunday’s, and sharing our testimonies, puts us at risk of losing our testimonies. Knowing this, I have found that our long absences from Sacrament Meetings, as of late, has put my testimony in jeopardy. If fact not long ago, my long absence from Church meetings, or the many still missed, because my wife worries for my health (although my Ward broadcasts our meetings) have left me with the feelings, that I had lost my testimony.  
 

Because of President Nelson’s challenge to members to share the things they are grateful for, I took up that challenge. By so doing I found that as wrote of the things for which I am thankful, this very act alone, inspired me to share my testimony. Buy following this counsel, it reminded me both of, “my love for the Gospel”, and that I not only still believed, but I had a wonderful testimony”. So the more obedient I was to this challenge, I discovered that even in my absence, that I did not feel as isolated from the Church (although I still do to lesser degrees, as noted from my other posts here) , and it inspired me to read both my lessons and scriptures more frequently. To better clarify, the very act of writing my testimony, and doing that which was asked of me by the Prophet, strengthened my testimony,  and reminded me of how much I loved our Church, and how much I believed, in it, and in it’s mission. This coming April will mark my 42nd year of membership, and activity in our unique Faith. Although at times, I was just, “going through the motions”, that activity, has inspired two of my children to serve missions, and my wife and I, to serve local missions. I. Only wish my health would allow my wife and I to serve another local mission. In just two more years, my oldest granddaughter can serve a mission, and is already looking forward to it. I can only pray that Papa’s heart could, or can deal with her absence from my life! I fear that Nanny and Papa’s hearts will be all too weak, for her to leave . I know it will be great for her, and she will learn and grow Spiritually, by serving a mission,  but the “Nature man”, or even the “Spiritual man”, I fear is just sooooooo very waeak to say goodbye for the 18 months, and I also worry, that my health will give out while she is gone. 
 

Back to the main point, do any here believe, or share in the comments that past Prophets, who have warned, that even small absences from Church attendance, can put in jeopardy our testimonies?  I think all would agree that long absences, can and will jeopardize our testimonies, if fact I think some posters here have shared this very fact, or can point to this as factor in their own loss of belief.. But, to those who wish to comment, “how long is too long”, before someone puts at risk their testimonies of the Gospel? Especially in light of our recent absences from Church, due to circumstances beyond our control, due to this pandemic? Also, how do we guard against losing our testimonies, when we are separated from both the Church, the Temple, and “Fellowship with the Saints”, now and in the future? 

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What is it about the LDS church that when a member no longer believes, the belief in Christ goes as well? You don't see that as often in other faiths such as Lutheran, Protestant, etc. They just go to another church. And keep their faith in God. So if you have a testimony of Christ, I think that's commendable.

Edited by Tacenda
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3 hours ago, Tacenda said:

What is it about the LDS church that when a member no longer believes, the belief in Christ goes as well? You don't see that as often in other faiths such as Lutheran, Protestant, etc. They just go to another church. And keep their faith in God. So if you have a testimony of Christ, I think that's to commendable.

Yes you do see it in other faiths.  You just have to be around them as much as you are around members of our church.  I've seen it in many churches.

Edited by Rain
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52 minutes ago, Bill “Papa” Lee said:

Many General Authorities for the last two hundred years, have proclaimed to us, or warned us, that we must both, live and share our testimonies, or lose them. I can remember when President Spencer W. Kimball, (the Prophet when I joined the Church) warned that missing too many Sunday’s, and sharing our testimonies, puts us at risk of losing our testimonies. Knowing this, I have found that our long absences from Sacrament Meetings, as of late, has put my testimony in jeopardy. If fact not long ago, my long absence from Church meetings, or the many still missed, because my wife worries for my health (although my Ward broadcasts our meetings) have left me with the feelings, that I had lost my testimony.  
 

Because of President Nelson’s challenge to members to share the things they are grateful for, I took up that challenge. By so doing I found that as wrote of the things for which I am thankful, this very act alone, inspired me to share my testimony. Buy following this counsel, it reminded me both of, “my love for the Gospel”, and that I not only still believed, but I had a wonderful testimony”. So the more obedient I was to this challenge, I discovered that even in my absence, that I did not feel as isolated from the Church (although I still do to lesser degrees, as noted from my other posts here) , and it inspired me to read both my lessons and scriptures more frequently. To better clarify, the very act of writing my testimony, and doing that which was asked of me by the Prophet, strengthened my testimony,  and reminded me of how much I loved our Church, and how much I believed, in it, and in it’s mission. This coming April will mark my 42nd year of membership, and activity in our unique Faith. Although at times, I was just, “going through the motions”, that activity, has inspired two of my children to serve missions, and my wife and I, to serve local missions. I. Only wish my health would allow my wife and I to serve another local mission. In just two more years, my oldest granddaughter can serve a mission, and is already looking forward to it. I can only pray that Papa’s heart could, or can deal with her absence from my life! I fear that Nanny and Papa’s hearts will be all too weak, for her to leave . I know it will be great for her, and she will learn and grow Spiritually, by serving a mission,  but the “Nature man”, or even the “Spiritual man”, I fear is just sooooooo very waeak to say goodbye for the 18 months, and I also worry, that my health will give out while she is gone. 
 

Back to the main point, do any here believe, or share in the comments that past Prophets, who have warned, that even small absences from Church attendance, can put in jeopardy our testimonies?  I think all would agree that long absences, can and will jeopardize our testimonies, if fact I think some posters here have shared this very fact, or can point to this as factor in their own loss of belief.. But, to those who wish to comment, “how long is too long”, before someone puts at risk their testimonies of the Gospel? Especially in light of our recent absences from Church, due to circumstances beyond our control, due to this pandemic? Also, how do we guard against losing our testimonies, when we are separated from both the Church, the Temple, and “Fellowship with the Saints”, now and in the future? 

There is a difference between not sharing our testimony and not attending meetings.  Besides, many are still attending, but doing it virtually.  

I have found not attending in person is actually strengthening my testimony.  It's given me more time to be still and reflect. But some of that also has to do with being still in life generally this year.  

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2 hours ago, Tacenda said:

What is it about the LDS church that when a member no longer believes, the belief in Christ goes as well?

In my opinion this is because most of the things people who leave the LDS church don't like about the church are supported by the bible. 

If you don't like the church's stance on homosexuality, you won't like what the bible has to say about it.

If you don't like the church's teachings on the roles of men and women being different, you won't like what the bible has to say about it.

If you don't like the church's history of polygamy, you won't like what the bible has to say about it.

And so on...

 

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2 hours ago, Tacenda said:

What is it about the LDS church that when a member no longer believes, the belief in Christ goes as well? You don't see that as often in other faiths such as Lutheran, Protestant, etc. They just go to another church. And keep their faith in God. So if you have a testimony of Christ, I think that's commendable.

You would be suprised, quite a bit of descent in Lutheran ranks as well, at least i've seen it.  My older brothers were Lutheran Acolytes, a lot has changed since their days. 

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4 hours ago, Tacenda said:

What is it about the LDS church that when a member no longer believes, the belief in Christ goes as well? You don't see that as often in other faiths such as Lutheran, Protestant, etc. They just go to another church. And keep their faith in God. So if you have a testimony of Christ, I think that's commendable.

My guess is they only had faith in the Church, and not Jesus Christ. This may be a shortcoming of our own making, when testimony meetings are more about believing the “Church is true”, and less about “being true to Christ”. 

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5 hours ago, Tacenda said:

What is it about the LDS church that when a member no longer believes, the belief in Christ goes as well? You don't see that as often in other faiths such as Lutheran, Protestant, etc. They just go to another church. And keep their faith in God. So if you have a testimony of Christ, I think that's commendable.

They are generally changing churches for different reasons than loss of fundamental beliefs though. 
 

You need to measure what happens when faith in fundamental beliefs change. 

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 12/11/2020 at 12:18 PM, Tacenda said:

What is it about the LDS church that when a member no longer believes, the belief in Christ goes as well? You don't see that as often in other faiths such as Lutheran, Protestant, etc. They just go to another church. And keep their faith in God. So if you have a testimony of Christ, I think that's commendable.

This is common in all faiths when you lose your faith. You might see more movement between churches from people who are just vaguely Christian but if they go to another church the problem is more likely to be annoyance at someone at the church, what the leaders are saying, or whatever. I think you will find there are very few Catholics who lose their faith in Christ that go off to become Baptists. They might over a doctrinal conflict or because they dislike the priest but when their faith is gone? Doubtful.

Edited by The Nehor
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In my opinion Bill Papa lee, the prophets want us to go to church regularly because it's a measure of our faith. Also we believe in works much much more than an evangelical Christian church. So I think regular attendance/works, is a outward expression of your faith. And if we dont go, it makes members of the congregation a little uncomfortable because not attending is actually seen as a sin. And I guess it is because if you dont go you'll lose your temple reccomend, that's the number one reason. In Christianity theyll hop around churches until they find a preacher that suits their ear better, or a youth program that satisfies the needs of their kids. Please dont take this the wrong way, but there relationship with jesus has nothing to do with attendance, white shirts, clean shaven face, length of skirts, and so on, that's why you'll see them attending church in blue jeans and a tshirt. To them it's all about their relationship with jesus. Since we add in works as an expression of our faith, outward appearance is much more important to us. Make of that what you will.

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On 12/25/2020 at 6:14 AM, AtlanticMike said:

... To them it's all about their relationship with jesus. Since we add in works as an expression of our faith, outward appearance is much more important to us. Make of that what you will.

While I agree that one should not neglect "weightier matters" in favor of mere appearance (that one should not simply seek to "look good" in favor of actually being good), one can take it too far the other direction, as well, such that he loses his awe and respect for the Divine, coming to think of God, instead (quoting Daniel C. Peterson, an erstwhile poster here), as everyone's ever-loving, ever-supportive, never-judgmental pal.  Does God expect things of me?  Heck, yeah. 

Do I quaver, sometimes, in the face of those expectations?  Heck, yeah!  Is He merciful, allowing me to pick myself up, dust myself off, and attempt, yet again (and again!) to meet the high bar He has set?  Fortunately, yeah.  But I don't see how I could possibly become everything God wants me to be in the absence of those expectations.

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39 minutes ago, Kenngo1969 said:

While I agree that one should not neglect "weightier matters" in favor of mere appearance (that one should not simply seek to "look good" in favor of actually being good), one can take it too far the other direction, as well, such that he loses his awe and respect for the Divine, coming to think of God, instead (quoting Daniel C. Peterson, an erstwhile poster here), as everyone's ever-loving, ever-supportive, never-judgmental pal.  Does God expect things of me?  Heck, yeah. 

Do I quaver, sometimes, in the face of those expectations?  Heck, yeah!  Is He merciful, allowing me to pick myself up, dust myself off, and attempt, yet again (and again!) to meet the high bar He has set?  Fortunately, yeah.  But I don't see how I could possibly become everything God wants me to be in the absence of those expectations.

The church has been changing rapidly since Pres. Nelson started implementing policy changes I think he's wanted to do for quite awhile. And it's a good thing, I personally think the white shirt, clean shaven face, only skirts/no pants for women era will soon come to an end in the next 10 or so years. I think the changes the Brethren are planning, has only just begun, it's going to be mind boggling for alot of people who are resistant to change but it has to be done. To keep on topic of this thread, I think these changes are being done so people are more comfortable coming to church on a regular basis and more likely to share their testimony. 

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On 12/11/2020 at 11:33 AM, Bill “Papa” Lee said:

Many General Authorities for the last two hundred years, have proclaimed to us, or warned us, that we must both, live and share our testimonies, or lose them. I can remember when President Spencer W. Kimball, (the Prophet when I joined the Church) warned that missing too many Sunday’s, and sharing our testimonies, puts us at risk of losing our testimonies. Knowing this, I have found that our long absences from Sacrament Meetings, as of late, has put my testimony in jeopardy. If fact not long ago, my long absence from Church meetings, or the many still missed, because my wife worries for my health (although my Ward broadcasts our meetings) have left me with the feelings, that I had lost my testimony.  
 

Because of President Nelson’s challenge to members to share the things they are grateful for, I took up that challenge. By so doing I found that as wrote of the things for which I am thankful, this very act alone, inspired me to share my testimony. Buy following this counsel, it reminded me both of, “my love for the Gospel”, and that I not only still believed, but I had a wonderful testimony”. So the more obedient I was to this challenge, I discovered that even in my absence, that I did not feel as isolated from the Church (although I still do to lesser degrees, as noted from my other posts here) , and it inspired me to read both my lessons and scriptures more frequently. To better clarify, the very act of writing my testimony, and doing that which was asked of me by the Prophet, strengthened my testimony,  and reminded me of how much I loved our Church, and how much I believed, in it, and in it’s mission. This coming April will mark my 42nd year of membership, and activity in our unique Faith. Although at times, I was just, “going through the motions”, that activity, has inspired two of my children to serve missions, and my wife and I, to serve local missions. I. Only wish my health would allow my wife and I to serve another local mission. In just two more years, my oldest granddaughter can serve a mission, and is already looking forward to it. I can only pray that Papa’s heart could, or can deal with her absence from my life! I fear that Nanny and Papa’s hearts will be all too weak, for her to leave . I know it will be great for her, and she will learn and grow Spiritually, by serving a mission,  but the “Nature man”, or even the “Spiritual man”, I fear is just sooooooo very waeak to say goodbye for the 18 months, and I also worry, that my health will give out while she is gone. 
 

Back to the main point, do any here believe, or share in the comments that past Prophets, who have warned, that even small absences from Church attendance, can put in jeopardy our testimonies?  I think all would agree that long absences, can and will jeopardize our testimonies, if fact I think some posters here have shared this very fact, or can point to this as factor in their own loss of belief.. But, to those who wish to comment, “how long is too long”, before someone puts at risk their testimonies of the Gospel? Especially in light of our recent absences from Church, due to circumstances beyond our control, due to this pandemic? Also, how do we guard against losing our testimonies, when we are separated from both the Church, the Temple, and “Fellowship with the Saints”, now and in the future? 

Hey Papa,

Surely the context was regarding voluntary absence. Catholicism was persecuted and nearly rooted out in Japan in the 18th and 19th Centuries. There were no priests in the country. No gatherings for the liturgy. When it became legal again to be Catholic after 200 years, there were faithful remnants that had continued baptizing their children for several generations. The missionaries who arrived were amazed. The faith had been propagated. The Japanese Catholics are/were a glorious reminder of how to keep the faith when it is being persecuted. They were involuntarily absent, and their faith thrived. Here is another example: Mom is in a nursing home. Covid restrictions don't permit the usual visit of a priest. Surely your prophet was not saying that if Mom was LDS she would be in danger of losing her testimony when through no fault of her own she could not participate in weekly meetings.

Now...I am all on board with you if you are arguing that we should consider the necessity of defying "authority" that is in opposition to the law of God, and even civil law, if civil authorities want to shut down religion specifically contrary to authoritative legislation. Neither the President nor the governors have Nero's authority. I do not believe American Christians are obliged to obey elected representatives who disregard the laws and act like emperors and kings. If anyone thinks it is prudent to follow their lead, that is okay too. I am not one of these who denies that retail stores have no right to exclude me because I won't wear a mask. But elected representatives in America need to persuade and suggest; some are acting like they have the  authority to command. I don't expect kudos here for voicing this, but to some degree we might be culpable if we act contrary to the norms of God's law, on the pretense of obeying supposed "lawful authority" that isn't lawful even according to the law of the land. As far as this current battle goes, I am for you guys and us guys and all people who believe in faith and freedom, that we would not submit to unlawful authority.

Edited by 3DOP
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11 hours ago, 3DOP said:

But elected representatives in America need to persuade and suggest; some are acting like they have the  authority to command. I don't expect kudos here for voicing this, but to some degree we might be culpable if we act contrary to the norms of God's law, on the pretense of obeying supposed "lawful authority" that isn't lawful even according to the law of the land. As far as this current battle goes, I am for you guys and us guys and all people who believe in faith and freedom, that we would not submit to unlawful authority.

That is not how government works. They do have authority to command. Not absolute authority of course but they do have that authority.

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