Tuesday, September 8, 2015

I'll be what you want me to be.

There is a song that is often sung at Church entitled, "I'll go where you want me to go" and it is referring to the Lord. It's very missionary oriented as we sing that we will go where the Lord wants us to go, and say what he wants us to say, and be what he wants us to be.

I really like this song.

I have a firm belief and testimony that I am where the Lord wants me to be. There have been times in my life where I received direction to move to new places and take on new responsibilities. For the most part, I have followed these directions.

One of the hallmarks of faith as a Mormon is that the Lord prepares a way for his children to do the things he has commanded them to do. So when I felt the Lord tell me to move across the country and take care of my parents, I did it. It wasn't easy. It wasn't a good financial decision. But there were blessings for following the Lord when he calls. And there were things that were waiting for me that I could never have planned for.

Should Everyone Be Like Me?

As a Mormon and as a Missionary, I have at times challenged people to make great changes in their lives. Challenges to give up smoking and drinking. Challenges to be sexually pure. Challenges to pay a tithing of 10% of their income. Challenges to join Christ's church and leave family ties behind. For some people these are hard things. For some people these are easy things.

But I don't think that everyone is like me. Nor do I think everyone should be. I am me. The Lord made me and has a purpose for me. My purpose is not the same purpose as your purpose. So while he asks me to challenge you to be more. I don't judge you in this challenge. I hope for you. And I wish for you. But you are not me, and only God knows what he is telling you about what you should be.

I have a testimony, a spiritual confirmation that my choices to be a Mormon, and have children, and follow the counsel of the church and the living prophet are certainly true. I know them. If I were to turn away from the Mormon faith even in the tiniest way, I would be going against what God wants of me.

But.

I have some family and friends that are not of my faith. And they are sure that God wants them to be true to their churches and the doctrines associated with it.

Who is right?

I'd like to say that there is no wrong way to follow God. But as we have read about Cain in the Bible. He may have made sacrifices to God, he certainly did it wrong. And so there are most certainly wrong ways to follow the Lord.

But isn't there one and only one right way?

I'd have to say, "No." as my answer. "And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind?" What is Christ's answer? "Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him." And this is what I also answer to the question. If you feel the spirit in your life, and your manifesting God's works, then you are living the way the Lord wants you to live.

Even if you don't belong to my Church.

Don't get me wrong. There are few joys greater than helping someone find greater truth. When I have the opportunities to teach and baptize in the name of Christ I know that I am doing the work he has sent me here to do.

I invite all to come and learn more.

But for those that can't abide more than they have. Or those that come and cannot or choose not to join with me and my faith, I know that you can still have the love of Christ in your life. You may still be fulfilling his purpose on the earth.

I say may, only because I know that accepting the Gospel of Christ is always a good thing to do. I know that not accepting and joining my faith does not mean you have rejected God.

I believe that not everyone has the same path to walk to get back to God. I believe that there are more ways to follow Christ than there are ways not to follow him.

I invite everyone to come and learn more. And I testify that Christ loves you no matter what you choose.  And if you let him in, he will use you to bless others and in this you will find joy.

So be what Christ wants you to be. He probably won't want you to be someone else, but he will want you to be there when he needs you.  And by being there, you will be doing his work.