Monday, September 26, 2011

Are You Listening?

Have you ever had a discussion with someone who just couldn't understand the point you were trying to get across. You can prove your point, but they still keep arguing theirs. In your mind you couldn't understand why they wouldn't accept what you were trying to say, and they are probably thinking the exact same thing. Usually arguments like this just result in both people getting frustrated. This happens to everyone, especially when you are on a mission.

They other day I was having a discussion about a point of doctrine about something I had figured out. The person I was talking to just couldn't get what I was trying to say though. He was telling me I was wrong and just wouldn't get my point; it was a pretty typical argument. We both got a little frustrated with each other and just agreed to disagree. About ten minutes later I really started to wonder why my friend didn't agree with me. I didn't care about whether he believed me anymore, and so I asked what it was that caused him to believe differently. He started explaining, and three or four times I caught myself about to argue, but I held off. By the time he was done explaining, I didn't understand why we were even arguing in the first place! We both believed the SAME THING! He was trying to show me one point, and I was so focused on making my point that I thought he was disagreeing with me. In all reality we both felt so strongly about what we were thinking of, that if the other person said anything different we automatically felt the other person was wrong.

I finally realized why there are so many false ideas about "Mormons" going around. Let me use an example: The Book of Mormon. Many people are against the Book of Mormon because they think it teaches things that are contrary to the Bible. They figure that Joseph Smith wrote it to twist the true teachings about Jesus Christ, and emphasize his own beliefs. They probably have a very strong belief of the Bible, and feel that the Book of Mormon is attacking what they know to be true. When they talk with a member of the LDS Church, they will try to make the point that they don't really believe in the Bible. In a believer's mind, if someone believes the Bible then they would have to believe the exact same thing as them. If they don't take a step back and research the LDS Church without that bias, they wont ever see the big picture and understand why we believe the Book of Mormon to be true. They would never be open to learning more about Christ. With that being said, it works the other way too. We should all be open to understanding why people come to the beliefs they do, and then judge the belief by it's merit.

If all we do is judge things by their truthfulness, we will never have to give up something we know to be true. If you fear changing however, you could miss something greater. I encourage you to give this a shot. I don't know everything, but I hope that I will continue to find truth everywhere. One thing I do know however, is the Book of Mormon was translated by a prophet of God. From that I have come to know that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and our savior!

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