Three weeks ago, I was a true believ­er. I was­n’t the best at church atten­dance, but I would look for­ward to the days I could go and I would sit, rapt and eager, lis­ten­ing to the lessons and talks. I read the scrip­tures. I have a large library of Nib­ley, Tal­mage, etc… things con­sid­ered “deep” doc­trine. I thought I had seen all the “anti” stuff, ana­lyzed it and came to the con­clu­sion (real­ly with­out even giv­ing it seri­ous thought) that it was all lies and pro­pa­gan­da from Satan, there to deceive the weak mind­ed and the weak spir­it­ed. I knew that every­thing that I knew was true.

And then sud­den­ly, with­out warn­ing :P, the church released pic­tures of Joseph Smith’s “seer stone”.

I pulled up the news item, looked at the stone, and said to myself, “What an awe­some piece of Church His­to­ry… wait, what?!” “Seer stone”? I’d nev­er heard of a seer stone. Was this part of the Urim and Thum­min? It did­n’t match what I thought those would look like. With­in sec­onds I had clicked onto LDS​.org and ran a search. All was good in Zion until the sec­tion on Trans­la­tion Instru­ments. Appar­ent­ly, Joseph had used a stone in a hat, “out of con­ve­nience”, instead of the Urim and Thum­min to trans­late the BoM. It real­ly struck a nerve with me that he would have an instru­ment giv­en to him, straight from an angel of God, and still decide to use a mag­ic rock (that he had used to search for trea­sure when he was younger) to do this all-impor­tant task of trans­lat­ing the BoM. Wait… “search for treasure”?!

And thus, down the rab­bit-hole I went.

When I emerged, I was a dif­fer­ent man. My faith had hit a con­crete wall while going 100 mph. I did­n’t go search­ing for this. I was­n’t look­ing for excus­es to jus­ti­fy a life of sin. I did­n’t have any agen­da. I was just learn­ing about church his­to­ry, straight from the hors­es mouth. And that did me in. I was not influ­enced or deceived by some exter­nal force. Yes, I had been lied to — by the church, from the moment I was born. I was angry, I was hurt, I was done.

What was I going to tell my wife… She was born into the church, loved the gospel and is one of the most spir­i­tu­al peo­ple I know. For the past cou­ple of years, she has had some depres­sion prob­lems, relat­ing to her sense of self-worth, and I saw that she was pos­si­bly in a frag­ile state. I could­n’t let my doubts hurt her. I would “fake it ’til I make it” back into a testimony.

I decid­ed to find answers by pray­ing, read­ing scrip­tures and going to church. That was the only rem­e­dy I could see. I need­ed a con­fir­ma­tion of any­thing. This last Sun­day I got up and went to church eager­ly, know­ing that I would get an answer. I did, but not the one I was expect­ing. After a severe­ly preachy and hypocrisy-filled sacra­ment meet­ing, a con­fus­ing­ly ill-pre­pared and off-the-track gospel doc­trine class, and anoth­er “non-les­son” in priest­hood meet­ing, I came home frus­trat­ed. I began vent­ing that to my wife, start­ing with how I had heard only a cou­ple of ref­er­ences to Christ in all 3 hours of church. Then it all start­ed com­ing out, the seer stone in the hat, the polygamy of Joseph Smith, the lies and the seem­ing­ly will­ful deceit. I, a ful­ly grown, beard­ed man, was in tears. I did­n’t mean to bring it up to her this way. I sat, ashamed, as she silent­ly looked at me.

Then she smiled and her response was akin to, “Well, what took you so long?”

We are stunned at how hap­py we are, how light we feel. It’s not offi­cial yet, but it will be. Damn the torpedoes!

Source: Unex­pect­ed Results : DeathonaPaleTapir



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