Let’s face it, life is full of gray. It’s complex. Everything we do simply entails so much. Every decision we make can lead to a dizzying number of unforeseen outcomes.
In fact, there’s so much complexity around the decisions we make that it’s often amazing we make any decisions at all. And as you might expect, the more important the decision is, the more complex it’s likely to be.
This principle is particularly present when those decisions involve the destiny of our own immortal souls.
The reasons for this are clear. Not only are there such awesome, sometimes formidable, life changing consequences to decisions of such an eternal nature, but the adversary of all righteousness, Satan himself, tries tremendously hard to further convolute our thoughts, cloud our judgment, and confuse our course.
He attempts to put so many things before our mind at the same time, each with their own self-fabricated importance, that he obscures the true, essential elements of a decision.
It’s like my asking you to catch a ball. It sounds easy, right? So I grab a ball, and then take several steps back from you. Then, at the same moment I toss you the ball, I simultaneously toss a dozen glass plates your way. You’re mind is so distracted by the inborn fear of breaking glass, that you’re attention becomes immediately scattered, unable to process it all at once, you lose focus, and miss the ball.
It’s a simple concept really, with brilliant results. If you missing the ball is my objective, of course.
In the same way, when it comes to those most important decisions in our lives, the ones with an eternal impact, such as choosing a church, Satan endeavors to put so much before your mind that you’ll inevitably lose focus on what matters most. The core. He knows that we’ll be so intent upon our innate, inborn tendency to want to reason it all out, resolve every conflict, that we too, will lose focus, and miss the ball.
But the reality is that there is no point in time at which ever conflict is resolved when it comes to knowing whether Mormonism, for instance, is true. Even Christ himself, the very picture of perfection, in his omniscience and omnipotence, with the absolute purity of eternal truth behind him, was unable to convince even the majority of those who surrounded him.
So while here (on this blog), and anywhere else, we discuss so many different doctrines, and share so many varying views of scripture, all of which are important endeavors, they too, can prove to be only distractions in answering the real question – is the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints the true church?
As with any decision of real value, there comes a time when you simply have to distill it down to the core questions. From the occasionally convoluted conversations you must extract the essential elements upon which all else are founded. It’s a process of purification. What ARE the real questions?
- Is Joseph Smith a prophet?
- Is the Book of Mormon True?
That’s it. It’s that simple. Catch the ball. Ignore the plates. Ask the question.
For if Joseph Smith was a prophet, then the Book of Mormon is what he says it is, a sacred record of Christ’s visit to the Americas, in the western hemisphere, sacred scripture that confirms and compliments the record of his time in the eastern hemisphere. If Joseph was a prophet then the church that he organized is true. Or you can work the other way – begin with the Book of Mormon. For if it is true, then from it you can derive the rest in the same way.
There are many people that are anxious to share with you their opinion. But will you base your eternal exaltation upon the opinion of others? There’s only one real way to know if these things are true. Go the source, taste for yourself, and ask your father in heaven.
His mouth is not shut. He can give you an answer.
There will be those who reply to this post and say “I didn’t get an answer”, or “my answer was different”.
Does that make any difference to you? My prayer is that you’ll let the plates fall where they may, that you’ll see through the obscurity and embrace the simplicity of the two essential questions before you, and that you’ll find out for yourself that your exaltation might be based on your own divine witness, and not an opinion of another.
My testimony to you is that they are true. Both of them. But don’t take my word for it either, make it your own.