Almost 10 Years On.

Ten years is coming up soon—a month and a few days away. I know the number is essentially arbitrary to the universe, but as the upcoming anniversary approaches, I can’t help but think and talk about it. On this equinox morning, I’m ready to expand the conversation a bit. I don’t think I’ll talk much more beyond this as the rest is personal.

Autumn is my favorite season. It is the season of gathering and harvest. When the light diminishes is when the lightworkers get busy. No one needs lightworkers when it is noon. It is when it is dark that bringing light is most needed.

I feel like this is autumnal appropriate.

Climbing the Fiery Mountain.

Looking back, the main thing I’ve noticed is how cyclical things are, like climbing a path cut around a mountain. Each pass around the trail has similar views with slightly different perspectives.

I think of that first blast of fiery, furious love—so intense that the first reaction is to clam up. But then, we get comfortable in it, let down our fear, and learn to walk in the fire. It’s like adjusting to the light from the dark. It takes a while to see, and even longer to feel comfortable. Like Daniel in the fiery furnace, we are tested by our trials. But if we have faith and courage, we can emerge stronger and more resilient.

Fire is a powerful force, but it can also be a tool for transformation. It can refine us and purify us, making us more like the gold of which we are made. In the same way, the fire of love can transform us. It can melt away our defenses and reveal our true selves. It can help us to become more loving, compassionate, and forgiving.

I am grateful for the fire of love that has burned in my life for the past ten years. It has made me a better person.

I hope that in the next ten years, I can continue to grow and learn in the fire of love. I want to become more like the Daniel, who trusted God even in the midst of the fiery furnace. I want to become more like the gold that God is and I am, refined and purified by the fire.

And most of all, I want to become more loving, compassionate, and forgiving. I want to be a force for good in the world, spreading the fire of love to everyone I meet.

The Good Shepherd; The Cat Lover.

Jesus, the Good Shepherd, showed compassion and love for humanity by his mortal life and death on the cross. He is a Master we can trust like a cat trusts its owner. He will always love us and care for us, no matter what. Most of us don’t herd sheep, but lots of us have cats. Imagine us as the cats and Jesus as the Cat Lover.

I am grateful for Jesus’ love and sacrifice. He has given me a new life and a new hope. He is the source of my strength and my courage.

I pray that in the next ten years, I can grow closer to Jesus and become more like him. I want to be a reflection of his love and compassion to the world.

I pray that the fire of love will continue to burn in my heart and in the hearts of all people. I pray that we will all become more loving, compassionate, and forgiving. And I pray that we will all come to know the love of Jesus Christ, the Good Shepherd.

Please do not get stuck on the names of Jesus or other spiritual figures. Instead, focus on what they represent—the universal force of love and compassion. We are all capable of experiencing this force, and it is what unites us all.

Do not try to judge God. We are incapable of fully understanding just how strong and strange his love is. Instead, trust in his love and allow it to transform you. The fire is fine. You can trust Him.

A Life of No Regrets — The Key.
If you focus on compassion and love, you will have a life of no regrets. You will be free from the burdens of anger, resentment, and judgment. You will be able to live each day with a clear heart and a open mind.

When you are compassionate, you see the world through the eyes of others. You understand their pain and their suffering. You are able to forgive them, even when they have wronged you.

When you are loving, you give to others without expecting anything in return. You are kind and generous, even to those who are unkind to you. Make the world a little less suck. Every day. Just a little bit less sucky.

Living a life of compassion and love is freeing. It frees you from the negative emotions that can hold you back. It allows you to live each day to the fullest and to experience the joy of life. It is as close to the way God lives as we can manage here.

I am grateful for the opportunity to learn and grow in compassion and love. I know that if I continue to focus on these qualities, I will have a life of no regrets.

I hope you will join me in living a life of compassion and love. It is the best way to live.

Doubting or Faithful?

Doubting Thomas is often portrayed in a negative light, but he was actually a man of great faith. He was so committed to the truth that he refused to believe in the resurrection of Jesus without evidence of the highest quality.

In John 20:24-29, Thomas tells the other disciples, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”

A week later, Jesus appears to the disciples again, and this time Thomas is present. Jesus invites Thomas to touch his wounds and to believe. Thomas falls on his knees and worships Jesus, exclaiming, “My Lord and my God!”

Jesus then says to Thomas, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”

Thomas’ story is a reminder that it is okay to doubt and to ask questions. We should not be afraid to demand evidence of the highest quality before we believe something. In fact, it is important to do so. Thomas wouldn’t have met Jesus otherwise.

However, we should also be open to the possibility that there are things that we cannot fully understand or explain. Thomas was blessed because he was willing to believe in Jesus, even though he didn’t have all the answers.

I think that doubting Thomas is a role model for us all. He shows us that it is possible to be both skeptical and faithful. He also shows us that it is important to seek out evidence of the highest quality, but that we should also be open to the possibility of things that we cannot fully explain.

Wrapping Up — No Fear.

In 1 Corinthians 15, Paul writes about the resurrection of Jesus Christ, calling it the “victory over sin and death.” He says that “the last enemy to be destroyed is death” (v. 26). Jesus’ resurrection gives us hope that we too will be resurrected to eternal life, free from sin and death.

John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” God’s love for us is so great that he sent his Son to die for our sins. When we believe in Jesus, we are forgiven of our sins and given the gift of eternal life.

1 John 4:8 says, “God is love.” God’s love is the foundation of everything he does. He loves us unconditionally and forever.

Fear is the opposite of love. When we are afraid, we are not trusting in God’s love for us. But when we know that God loves us and that he has conquered death and sin, we can have perfect peace.

Post Script.

“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

My Advice

Early in the morning of October 25, 2013, after a night of prayer, the Lord Jesus Christ suddenly came to my room in a resurrected body of Fire and Glory.  Part of the ordinances of that occasion included the obligation to declare the witness that I posted at this site for a period of two years.  That obligation is satisfied on November 5, 2015.  It is my intention at that time to remove both the original post and this post and return to my normal life.

I met Christ while fully awake, completely sober with no drugs, alcohol, or other mind altering substances involved.  There was no imagination, guided meditation, dreams, 3rd eye sight, no-veil sight, or sleeping involved.  I specify this with no judgment intended regarding anyone’s experiences, but simply to clarify the nature of this particular event.

I recognize that skeptics may not find this credible.  I have no physical evidence to offer.  I understand why you may not believe me, but I hope that you would at least consider the advice below.

Moses 1:11 refers to a difference between spiritual and natural eyes and being transfigured.  This statement made perfect sense to me on that evening.  I will not clarify it other than what I have said above.  If you desire further understanding, please seek the Lord and get to know him personally.  He is no respecter of persons and will give you wisdom liberally.

I have never on any occasion fully described this or other experiences.  I am not sure I have the ability to do so.   In particular, on this site, I have only attempted to share that He is real and knowable, in compliance with the Lord’s standard operating procedure.  (See Moroni 7:25-32, 3 Nephi 11:14-16, Lectures on Faith 2:54-56).  My purpose in writing this is to instill in others hope and confidence that they too can know Him.

I have gotten to know many people as a result of this website.  Most of them, I believe, will tell you that I am a normal, average, guy.  Anything of value you have gained from this site comes from God and He deserves the glory.

I am grateful to Him for this opportunity to be a small part of His work.  I do not know all of His plans.  I am not sure it is possible for any mortal to know all of the things that Christ has taken into His heart to accomplish.  I just try to do His will.  That being said, I am glad that this task is nearly accomplished and God willing, I look forward to returning to obscurity.

Prior to that, and as a final testimony, I would like to share a few items of my advice, in no particular order:

Good Master

I believe that Christ is our example and that applies especially to his mortal life.  Towards the end of his life a rich young ruler came to him asking, “Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?”  Christ’s first response was a rebuke “Why callest thou me good?  there is none good but one, that is God.

Christ, while mortal, redirected all attention from himself to His Father.  He understood that while mortal we all are in jeopardy.  In His sermon on the mount the summary was “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.”  It is only after His resurrection that Christ included Himself in that summary.  “Therefore I would that ye should be perfect even as I, or your Father who is in heaven is perfect.

Christ is the father of our salvation.  His is the Way to redemption from the fall.  As a mortal His attention was always to His Father’s will and never to His own goodness.  As a practical matter, I believe we should always focus our attention to Christ and redirect any praise to Him.

Perfected in Christ

We are perfected in Christ, not apart from Christ.  It is His work and glory to bring to pass our Eternal Life and Immortality.   Our work and glory is to suffer the will of our Father in all things, just as Christ showed us during His mortal life.


Consider the following:

“The world always mistook false prophets for true ones, and those that were sent of God, they considered to be false prophets, and hence they killed, stoned, punished and imprisoned the true prophets, and these had to hide themselves ‘in deserts and dens, and caves of the earth’ [see Hebrews 11:38], and though the most honorable men of the earth, they banished them from their society as vagabonds, whilst they cherished, honored and supported knaves, vagabonds, hypocrites, impostors, and the basest of men.” — Teachings of Joseph Smith.

Who do you lift up and who do you cast out?  Does popularity reveal truth?

Christ came to this Earth to a people with a functioning temple, priesthood, and unbroken line of authority that stretched back to their founder Moses.  Christ recognized the legitimacy of these claims.

What would the average member of the Jewish church have thought of Jesus Christ?

Christ was rejected by the majority as a vagabond, no name, from a podunk town with no apparent authority.  The people lifted up and supported Caiaphas and the rulers.  Any test of what is true or not that would result in rejecting Christ is not a valid basis for determining truth.  Christ told us how His disciples would be treated.

The Book of Mormon teaches us the manner of priestly ordination.   It was done in a way so that those looking for Christ would not be deceived and would be looking for Him when He came.  In the same way, we can study out Christ’s mortal life for clues to the manner of discerning true messengers.

Doctrine of Christ

The Doctrine of Christ is simple.

Nephi discusses it here and then summarizes it in two verses.

  • Faith in Jesus Christ or having confidence in Him as a little child,
  • Repentance or turning to Him,
  • Baptism of water (as a renewed command),
  • Taking the Holy Ghost as your guide (your liahona),
  • Enduring the trials of your willingness to walk the path,
  • Until you reach the goal of the path — being redeemed from the fall or Christ manifesting Himself to you in the flesh.

Anything more or less than this is not built on the rock of Christ.

Let’s not dispute.  We have some indications that the correct method of worship has yet to be fully restored.  The Book of Mormon teaches us that God is merciful and will accept our prayers or worship even if done in our fields, houses, and our closets because of Christ.

Let’s accept the doctrine of Christ and cease all disputations.  Let’s recognize that we are as little children in our understanding of what we worship and how to worship.  Then let us rejoice that because of the Son, God will be merciful and hear our worship while we call to Him at our jobs, in our cars, while we dance, while we eat.


Men and women only see the outward appearance.  Whatever sight we have, this remains true — only God sees the thoughts and intents of our hearts.  Not to recognize this is hubris.

Gospel of Christ

The word gospel means “good news.”  To understand the good news you need to understand the bad news.  The bad news is we all are cut off from God.  Everyone on this planet is separated from God.

The good news is Christ came to lift all men up back into the presence of God.  Even as He was lifted up so He will  lift all of us up to be returned to the presence of God.  On that occasion, our lives will be reviewed according to our works.  The good fruit will be accepted, the bad fruit will be rejected.

More good news.  The test is an open book one.  The answer is simple – take care of the “least of these.”  Even those who did not know Christ and are surprised to find themselves in His presence will pass the test, so long as they have demonstrated the practical skills of feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, taking care of the stranger.

While those who have the theoretical keys of knowledge and have done works in the name of the Lord, but lack the practical works will be cast out.  Be practical.

Practical Christianity

Be practical not theoretical.  I really like the Google definition of practical  – “of or concerned with the actual doing or use of something rather than with theory and ideas.”  I am convinced that correct gospel theory can be taught in an intensive weekend, but practical experience can take years to learn, if it is ever learned at all.

It is easy to be Christlike when reading from a prepared talk.  It is hard when being cut off while on your commute.   It is easy to think you are righteous when you are fawned over while wearing your finest clothes and called by adoring titles.   Hard to act Christlike when you are spent and worn out at home.  Don’t run out chasing altars and titles while your wife and children are in distress.

If I have to be labeled, I would hope that it would be as a Practical Christian or as a Practical Mormon.  (Which I see as synonymous when using Joseph’s definition of Mormonism.)

I pondered and prayed for a long time on this post.  It is not something I really wanted to do.  I see the removal of this site with the same anticipation I felt when returning home from my mission.  A sense of happiness at a task accomplished and relief to be returning to more joyful endeavors among my closest loved ones.

However, I found as I went over the list of topics that needed to be included, I had this topic listed multiple times in several ways.  So perhaps that is a sign.  It is important.  Be a Practical Christian — Don’t be a Theoretical Christian.

Mormonism is Truth

“Mormonism is truth; and every man who embraces it feels himself at liberty to embrace every truth: consequently the shackles of superstition, bigotry, ignorance, and priestcraft, fall at once from his neck; and his eyes are opened to see the truth, and truth greatly prevails over priestcraft….The first and fundamental principle of our holy religion is, that we believe that we have a right to embrace all, and every item of truth, without limitation or without being circumscribed or prohibited by the creeds or superstitious notions of men, or by the dominations of one another, when that truth is clearly demonstrated to our minds, and we have the highest degree of evidence of the same.” — Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith p. 264

Our religion is at its essence the search for truth, unencumbered by dominations of priests or creeds.  At least, this was how its founder described it.  I adopt this definition of Mormonism.

Christ’s Peace

Christ’s peace is not as the world’s peace is.  It is not the absence of conflict.  It is the peace that allows one to forgive his murderers even while those murderers are in the act of throwing stones.  Christ’s peace is not the absence of distress, it is peace that abides and overcomes in the midst of distress.


If our height was an outward appearance of our righteousness… so for example, if you could see how righteous a person was by their height, then we could easily tell that a 6 foot person is more righteous than a 5 foot person.

Even if this was the case, Christ is Mt Everest.  From His perspective, the differences between us are so minor that we might as well say we are all equally less than dust.  Can you tell how tall a person is from the top of the Empire State Building?  It is a waste of time to even try.  So it is a waste of time to compare ourselves to others.

Don’t lose focus.  We are to always remember Him.  When we start comparing ourselves to others we are forgetting Him.  This is pride.  Christ is the measuring stick.  Using any other standard is pride.

We all are equally reliant on the grace of Christ.  Redemption only comes from Christ.  Despite all we do, it is only by His grace that we are saved.  Have faith that He can do His work and then focus on your job, which is to suffer His will in all things, just as He suffered His Father’s will when He walked among us as a man.

Final Thoughts

So this is my advice or the advice that I am giving heed to.  Only you and the Lord can determine what your advice is.

To those that do not find this credible – I would not believe it either if it had not happened to me.  I fully understand why you would not believe my story.  I do not find fault with you.  I hope you would at least consider the advice to live a practical and ethical  life.

To those that find this credible – I would hope that you go away from this site with hope that it is possible to for you specifically to know Christ, that the end is an achievable goal.  The trials you endure are tests of your willingness to remain on the path.  The Holy Ghost is your guide along the path.  Obey His commandments given to you by the Holy Ghost.

Salvation, at its essence, is a choice.  Look to Christ and live.  Endure every attempt to dissuade you from your choice and Christ will come to you.  He will control the timing.  He has the big picture.  Part of having faith in Him is trusting His judgment on how He will best accomplish His work.

Knowing God should be unremarkable.  When God’s will is done on earth as it is in Heaven, no one will teach knowledge of the Lord, for all will know Him no matter who they are.  It is His desire that all receive.  It starts with a prayer to do His will.  A prayer thus said, when done with real intent, results in the supplicant taking action on the pure intelligence received – no matter how undesirable the action is.  Silence is likely an indication that you don’t really want to hear what He will say or that you are ignoring what He already told you.  If you are at a loss of what to do, fall back on the practical actions from the open book test.  We almost always could be a little kinder to our families, to the stranger, to the hungry.


This was the command of the voice of the Lord to me on May 12, 2012, – “Make straight the way of the Lord.”

Prepare His way.  Set your life in order so that He will have a direct, level, and smooth path.

We are on the edge of a Sunday.  God bless us all to make His path straight.

My Testimony

I share this testimony in the spirit of friendship to any fellow seeker of Christ.

I am a normal lay member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  I have no presiding authority to teach or command within the organization of the church.  Within the stewardship of the organization, I respect the authority of those presiding authorities, and I keep these experiences to myself.   I share unrestrained to my friends and my family. Spirituality and the gospel are greater than any organization.

I served an honorable mission, married in the temple, and have a current temple recommend.  I have been and remain an active member of the LDS church.  I have no intentions of leaving it.

I have been asked to post this testimony here.  I hope that this will be a one-post declaration of the grace Christ has bestowed on me.  I have no intention to publicize this beyond a few family members and friends.  I am not a great example.  I have no secret to share that has been hidden.  All I can do is testify that knowing Christ literally is possible.  This is not a full record of my experiences, but what I share here did happen.


I started college at BYU as a freshman in 1994.  I had one full school year before my LDS mission.  During that freshman year, I took up reading the Book of Mormon for a half hour every day.  I soon recognized an invitation to know the Lord personally as did Lehi, Nephi, and many others contained within that book.  This invitation to know the Lord is explicitly made in D&C 93:1.

D&C 93:1 Verily, thus saith the Lord: It shall come to pass that every soul who forsaketh his sins and cometh unto me, and calleth on my name, and obeyeth my voice, and keepeth my commandments, shall see my face and know that I am;

The invitation in this scripture impressed me so much that I included it on my missionary plaque.  From that time, seeing His face and knowing the Lord has been my goal.  I sought after this goal for nearly 18 years.  This desire has not been merely a new whim.  I am not a kindergartner seeking a crash course in calculus.

Joseph Smith taught “for God hath not revealed anything to Joseph, but what He will make known unto the Twelve, and even the least Saint may know all things as fast as he is able to bear them, for the day must come when no man need say to his neighbor, Know ye the Lord; for all shall know Him (who remain) from the least to the greatest.’ ” Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, page 149.

I believed him.

I didn’t have a name for what I went through during that period at BYU until many years later.  Though I was baptized by water when I was 8, it was during that year, at age 18, that I received the Baptism of Fire and the Holy Ghost.

This is how in 2012, I found myself pleading for truth and wisdom.  That prayer led me to a book called The Second Comforter: Conversing with the Lord Through the Veil by Denver C. Snuffer Jr.  I recognized The Second Comforter as a manual.  I saw in it many experiences that I had already gone through. It was like a map.  From reading it I saw where I had been on the path, where I was, and what else I could expect to experience.  It was then a simple matter of pondering, identifying, and working on the areas I had identified.

My Witness

On April 14, 2012, I was carried away into the heavenly temple.  I shook the hand of the angel that was my guide.  I saw and heard the Father and the Son speak to me.  This experience involved sight, touch, sound, and smell.  It was as real as anything I have experienced in my day-to-day life, only the glory and intelligence conveyed is indescribable.  This was not my last encounter beyond the veil.

I am a witness that Jesus Christ lives.  He is a real, knowable person.

If you seek and accept His messengers to prepare the way, He will come suddenly to His temple and reveal to you His glorious body of burnings.  He is talkative.  He wants to know you more than you want to know Him.  I know this because I have experienced this as a man speaks to another.

Jesus Christ is the Second Comforter. He literally came to me and has comforted me.

This is not a full statement of my witness.  I share my testimony so that you may know that Christ lives and His work is to save imperfect people.  I hope that this testimony will allow you to exercise faith enough to lay hold on these blessings.

The Doctrine of Christ

The path to knowing Him is simple.  The Book of Mormon calls it the Doctrine of Christ.  It is faith, repentance, baptism, and then to actually receive the Holy Ghost.  Once you have actually received the Baptism by Fire and the Holy Ghost you must do everything the Holy Ghost says until Christ manifests Himself to you.  This is the end or goal to which we endure.  It is to know Him literally.  He has a ministry to accomplish with you personally.

You cannot get there by following any program or man.  It is a matter of working on what one thing the Holy Ghost tells you to do each day.  We are commanded to press forward to this goal with steadfastness.

2 Nephi 31:20 Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life.

If you are expecting to know Christ in death when you have not known Him in life, you will be disappointed.  While being martyred, Stephen would not have been welcomed by Christ in His glory had Stephen not known Christ in his life.

Alma 34:32 For behold, this life is the time for men to prepare to meet God; yea, behold the day of this life is the day for men to perform their labors. 33 And now, as I said unto you before, as ye have had so many witnesses, therefore, I beseech of you that ye do not procrastinate the day of your repentance until the end; for after this day of life, which is given us to prepare for eternity, behold, if we do not improve our time while in this life, then cometh the night of darkness wherein there can be no labor performed. 34 Ye cannot say, when ye are brought to that awful crisis, that I will repent, that I will return to my God. Nay, ye cannot say this; for that same spirit which doth possess your bodies at the time that ye go out of this life, that same spirit will have power to possess your body in that eternal world.

The Book of Mormon contains this doctrine within its first six verses.  Page after page, example after example, we can see how normal people had the desire and faith to know the Lord while in the flesh.  Study Nephi’s last discourse in 2 Nephi, especially chapters 31-32.  Study Moroni Chapter 7 and the ministry of angels.  Study the whole book with the idea of how you can obtain what the authors obtained.  They were not satisfied until they knew God while during their mortal lives.

The Lectures on Faith – A Neglected Treasure

I highly recommend the Lectures on Faith.  It is scripture and was accepted as such by all quorums and the general membership of the church.  It was edited, written, and approved by a man that had communed with Jehovah.  The Lectures on Faith set out in methodical form keys or knowledge to knowing Christ and His Father.

Without Faith There is No Ministry of Angels – A Key Offered

In the months that followed, a heavenly messenger came to my bedside and taught me from the scriptures, primarily the Book of Mormon and Isaiah.  This happened on three different nights over a period of two months, each time repeating the prior message and adding more.  The best one line summary of the hours-long conversation is “the Gentiles in the Book of Mormon should be understood as referring to the LDS”.  Please understand that this is a very inadequate summary.

Moroni 7:37 Behold I say unto you, Nay; for it is by faith that miracles are wrought; and it is by faith that angels appear and minister unto men; wherefore, if these things have ceased wo be unto the children of men, for it is because of unbelief, and all is vain. 38 For no man can be saved, according to the words of Christ, save they shall have faith in his name; wherefore, if these things have ceased, then has faith ceased also; and awful is the state of man, for they are as though there had been no redemption made.

Ask the Lord to show you what unbelief you have.  If you ask with a sincere heart, He will answer you.  A sincere heart means that you are willing to accept the answer no matter what it is without preconceptions.  Work on casting aside that unbelief.  This is the hard part.  We have accepted many traditions that are unbelief.  The Book of Mormon will be your key.  It was written to you, its reader.

In the period that has followed, my mind has been completely blown by the knowledge communicated from heaven.  I had to lay down long-held beliefs that were really philosophies of men.  A quality that is attractive to heaven is an openness to learning.  I have also learned that if Angels have not come to you, then it is because of some unbelief that you are holding onto.  Unbelief is more than not believing, it also includes belief in errors or incorrect belief.  You may not even be aware of what it is.  You may think it is truth when it is not.

Whose Connection to Heaven Matters?

To those who rely on others for their connection to heaven, the standing of any apostle, president, parent, bishop, or any other person, whether they commune with God or not, will not matter for your salvation.  What matters is your own connection to heaven.  If every person magnifies his calling and converses with the Lord, it will not matter to you if you do not do the same.  God is no respecter of persons; you cannot be in the same kingdom as Nephi, Lehi, Abraham, and others without having had the same experiences.  There is never any safety in following men.  Even followers of true prophets find themselves in the telestial kingdom (see D&C 76:98-101).

Lectures on Faith 6:8 It is in vain for persons to fancy to themselves that they are heirs with those, or can be heirs with them, who have offered their all in sacrifice, and by this means obtained faith in God and favor with him so as to obtain eternal life, unless they in like manner offer unto him the same sacrifice, and through that offering obtain the knowledge that they are accepted of him.

The True Standard of Righteousness

Regarding righteousness, a person can try to live up to every law and commandment both cultural and scriptural and it will be insufficient.  At the end of the day, after all we can do, we are saved by Christ’s grace.  Why did Nephi labor so diligently to teach of Christ?  Why did he and his people believe in Christ and talk about Him so much?

Nephi spoke of Christ because all we do amounts to basically nothing.  No amount of compliance with any law will be sufficient to save us.

Assume your height was a visible measure of your righteousness.  You could compare yourself to others and say, “Look, I’m six feet tall and everyone else is five feet, therefore I am righteous.”  This is in essence what we do; we compare ourselves to others and find comfort in being “taller”.

Christ is the Empire State Building or Mt. Everest. From His perspective the difference between the best of us and the worst of us is so insignificant that we all equally fall short. You can’t even tell from the top of the Empire State Building just who is taller than the other.

This is the standard of righteousness that heaven uses. We all fall so far short of it that it is purely by Christ’s grace that we are saved.

You will not save yourself by saving up for that bicycle. The amount you offer is nothing compared to the standard of Righteousness. The only thing you can offer is a broken heart and contrite spirit. You must be willing to set aside anything and everything to know Him, including your cherished but incorrect beliefs.

To the Critics of the Church

For those of you aware of facts that have shaken your faith in Joseph Smith or The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, faith in a man or an institution is idolatry.  The only object worthy of faith is Jesus Christ.  To have your faith shaken in an idol is a good thing.  Joseph Smith defined Mormonism as truth:

Mormonism is truth; and every man who embraces it feels himself at liberty to embrace every truth. Consequently the shackles of superstition, bigotry, ignorance, and priestcraft, fall at once from his neck; and his eyes are opened to see the truth, and truth greatly prevails over priestcraft…The first and fundamental principle of our holy religion is, that we believe that we have a right to embrace all, and every item of truth, without limitation or without being circumscribed or prohibited by the creeds or superstitious notions of men, or by the dominations of one another, when that truth is clearly demonstrated to our minds, and we have the highest degree of evidence of the same.
– Joseph Smith -Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith, page 264,

The truth is, your skepticism of men and institutions puts you in good company.  In 1830 the Lord called the church “true and living” (D&C 1:30).  By 1832 the Lord stated that the church is “condemned” (D&C 84:54-57).  By 1841 the Lord says He has taken the fullness of the priesthood away from the church (D&C 124:28).  The Lord promised that if we did not repent, we would “by [our] own works, bring cursings, wrath, indignation, and judgments upon your own heads, by your follies, and by all your abominations, which you practice before me, saith the Lord.” (v. 48).

You have learned truth and that truth is confirmed by the Lord’s own words.  We were moved out of Nauvoo and have suffered cursings by our own follies.  With this knowledge of truth you can refocus your faith in the proper place, Jesus Christ.  Jesus Christ is an expert at saving fallen things.

If you do not accuse each other, God will not accuse you. If you have no accuser you will enter heaven, and if you will follow the revelations and instructions which God gives you through me, I will take you into heaven as my back load. If you will not accuse me, I will not accuse you. If you will throw a cloak of charity over my sins, I will over yours—for charity covereth a multitude of sins. – Joseph Smith -Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, page 193

We all need this cloak of charity.

I am not an Example

I am not an example because I am more righteous or perfect or more virtuous.  I am not.  I am utterly unworthy of any heavenly attention as to myself and am certainly not worth any earthly attention.  I only share my experience so that others may know that no matter how low you are, Christ will save you if you let Him.

Christ’s work is to save you.  He is good at what He does.  Let Him work with you.  Be patient and teachable as a little child.  Children do not have all the preconceptions and false traditions we have.  Try to read the Book of Mormon without any preconceptions about what it means.  I know that is very hard to do.  I still have weaknesses.  We all do.  We are given weaknesses to humble us.  Let yourself be humble.

I have no stewardship to reveal anything to any member of the church.  I am not a presiding authority, and therefore nothing I share would be of any force to anyone.  I believe I had stated that clearly, but I do so again just to be clear.

The Lord has asked me to share these thoughts here, but only in the capacity as a friend and fellow seeker, and not by way of commandment or revelation.  So while I am under an obligation to post, no one else is under any obligation beyond what they are persuaded by the Holy Ghost.  The only tool I have is testimony and persuasion.  I do not consider myself an expert, special, more righteous, or anything other than an ordinary LDS guy.

My only goal in writing here is to increase faith in Christ.  I believe the preeminent doctrine worth talking about is the Doctrine of Christ — Faith, Repentance, Baptism, taking the Holy Ghost as your guide until Christ manifests Himself to you.  Christ is real and employs no servant at the gate.

2 Nephi 9:41 O then, my beloved brethren, come unto the Lord, the Holy One. Remember that his paths are righteous. Behold, the way for man is narrow, but it lieth in a straight course before him, and the keeper of the gate is the Holy One of Israel; and he employeth no servant there; and there is none other way save it be by the gate; for he cannot be deceived, for the Lord God is his name.

If my words have caused anyone to have less faith in Christ, then I beg for your forgiveness and ask you to ignore me.  Of all my mistakes, which are many, it yet remains that I experienced what I did.  To echo Joseph’s words — I know it and I know God knows it.

I do not fault nor accuse anyone for disbelieving me.  Christ is the only one worthy of belief. Believe in Him. Seek after Him.  He has promised that He will come to you.  Please do not be satisfied with anything less than His literal presence.

John 14:23 – Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.
D&C 130:3 – John 14:23—The appearing of the Father and the Son, in that verse, is a personal appearance; and the idea that the Father and the Son dwell in a man’s heart is an old sectarian notion, and is false.

Please do not stop casting out unbelief until the Angels come and Christ manifests Himself.  These things are absolutely necessary for your eternal salvation.  Christ has a work to do that no earthly man or program can provide.  There is no servant at the gate.  There is no substitute for conversing with the Lord through the veil.