It seems that more people each day make the decision to separate ties with the Church. Each has their own reasons, and I respect them. Some of these people who choose to walk away aren’t surprising, but some are.
There are moments where we are given great cause to reflect on the state of our lives. Seeing one of your examples from youth who you once looked up to change course is one of those moments.
“There may be some doctrine, some policy, some bit of history that puts you at odds with your faith, and you may feel that the only way to resolve that inner turmoil right now is to “walk no more” with the Saints. If you live as long as I have, you will come to know that things have a way of resolving themselves. An inspired insight or revelation may shed new light on an issue. Remember, the Restoration is not an event, but it continues to unfold.” -M. Russell Ballard
Seeing these people choose other life paths, other beliefs, does this make me question my own beliefs?
I questioned my faith and beliefs almost ten years ago. I struggled with deep questions and powerful opposition against spiritual highs. I made a decision to move away from neutral ground as I chose to become a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I chose Jesus, and I’ve never been more sure about a decision.
Since I made that decision my beliefs have evolved into testimony. Like many of the early disciples, many people in the Church are finding things to be hard, and choose to go away. I sometimes feel like Peter when the Savior asked him, “Will ye also go away?” My answer echoes Peter’s.
“To whom shall [I] go? Thou hast the words of eternal life. And we believe and are sure that thou art that Christ, the Son of the living God.” John 6:67-69 (Emphasis added)
Where else would I go?
The words of eternal life are just that, eternal. Unending, unchanging, forever. Always prophets, always truth and trial. Always Jesus and redemption.
“Never fail to give equal time to the Lord through honest attempts to understand what the Lord has revealed. As my dear friend and former colleague Elder Neal A. Maxwell once said, “We should not assume … that just because something is unexplainable by us it is unexplainable.”
“…the answers are always there, and if we seek them—really seek with real intent and with full purpose of a prayerful heart—we will eventually find the answers to our questions as we continue on the gospel path.” -M. Russell Ballard
Elder Ballard’s general conference address was a favorite of mine. So relevant. So uplifting. It has hit home for me in many ways. Talks like that are why general conference is important. Talks like that solidify my belief in these men as servants of God.
Sometimes we look back only to find that we have veered from the path, maybe even much further than we realized. But, because of the Savior, the path is always there, leading its travelers to the same destination, and we are always invited and welcomed back.
Quotes from Elder Ballard taken from his most recent General Conference address, “To Whom Shall We Go?”