Saturday, March 08, 2008

The Crux of My Testimony and Life

It has been just over five months since I finished reading the Book of Mormon and completed my "inspection" (commentary) of it. Since then, I've started working my way through Isaiah and posting my thoughts on a blog about what I've been learning.

But as many know, Isaiah is very difficult to read. Sometimes I have a lot of gumption and can pound out a few chapters a week. Other times, I have low or no desire to read and study Isaiah. I'm currently in a bit of slump, but I'm still determined to finish it.

So I've been in somewhat of a funk when it comes to feeding my testimony. I greatly missed that daily study of the Book of Mormon.

During this same time, I've continued to read lots of LDS blogs. There are a LOT of ideas and insights out there in the Internet when it comes to LDS culture, scriptures, gospel doctrine and church history. When it comes to Church History, it seems to me that many peoples' testimonies have either weakened or been lost because they found something out about the Church's history that has shocked them.

This is somewhat understandable. From July of last year until about December, I was reading Rough Stone Rolling by Richad Bushman (buy book at Amazon and B&N). I admit, I learned a lot of things from that book that I either had not heard of before or if I had, I did not know much about the subject.

Now that I have set up what kind of situtation I found myself in, I can tell you what I have recently begun to do (again). I used to read the Book of Mormon in Spanish almost every day a few years ago. It was a habit I started after President Hinckley suggested to us missionaries in Guatemala that we read the Book of Mormon in Spanish the rest of our lives. With his passing, I recalled this specific counsel he gave to a group of about 600 of missionaries in 1996. So I decided to read el Libro de Mormon each night before I go to sleep. After reading a chapter, I say my prayers and then go to sleep.

The difference in my attitude and spiritual life has been dramatic. I cannot fully express the tremendous effect reading the Book of Mormon has in my life. Since I've begun reading that special book again, I have felt steadier, more in control and at greater peace with myself than before. I LOVE READING THE BOOK OF MORMON! It is one of the most simplest and most fulfilling pleasures in my life.

I was prompted to post this tonight after reading an excellent post over at Mormanity (Jeff Lindsay's blog). His latest post discusses how some people seem to focus too much on issues such as polygamy and other less discussed Church history topics. These same people, however, fail to focus on the several witnesses of the Book of Mormon. If you have a minute, read the entire post: Troubled by Mormon History?

Just as the Book of Mormon is the keystone of our religon, it is the crux of my testimony and perhaps my life. If I don't read the Book of Mormon on a regular basis, then nothing seems to flow so well ... I get stuck in ruts and I don't feel settled or at peace. But when I add this unique ingredient to my life, then everything seems better. I am happier, I feel at peace, guided, in balance and whole.

Indeed the Book of Mormon is the crux of my testimony and life. I can't live without it.

11 comments:

KingM said...

Witnesses are not very reliable, unfortunately, and it's a good thing, or we'd be forced to accept manifestations of the Virgin Mary, or other miraculous doings of Catholic saints, of which there are many.

Latter-Day James said...

By witnesses are you talking about the witnesses of the Golden Plates back in the 1800's dp?

Kingm, it is kinda hard to compare witnesses that were upstanding citizens in a community in the 1800's to a grilled marking that resembles the Virgin Mary on a grilled cheese sandwich or other things done by Catholic Saints that may or may not have been miraculous. Whereas the witness of the men whose names are in the introduction of the Book of Mormon to which they have lent their names in testimony bears more weight. How? We know who they were, they testified to have seen the Golden Plates. Could they have been "in" on it? Sure. But why? None of them stood to gain and none, even when disaffected, went against their original testimonies.

dp said...

By witnesses are you talking about the witnesses of the Golden Plates back in the 1800's dp?
Yes ... Jeff's post alluded to the several witnesses of the Book of Mormon in the 1800's and those are the witnesses I was referring to as well.

jayleenb said...

I love the Book of Mormon! I read it three times in three months before praying about it. The first time to prove it wrong... then when I found nothing wrong, I read it again kind of fast, and then decided I needed to read it more slowly to make sure I didn't miss anything.

After my prayer and the witness of the Holy Ghost as to its truthfulness, I found myself absolutely delighted to realize there was more Scripture! I had wondered for years why God stopped talking to us through Prophets and Apostles, but figured it just wasn't for our time since that's what I was told.

I am SO grateful that Father does still speak to us through Prophets and every time I read the Book of Mormon, I love it even more. I read some every day and when I'm done I start over again. I also love the Bible more and understand it so much better after applying the teachings of the Church. It suddenly made total sense as I had always felt it should.

It never made sense because I was being taught things that weren't correct and then reading the Bible it didn't add up.

I love the Book of Mormon and I love this Church!!! :)

dp said...

jayleenb,

Thank you for your comment! It always makes my day hearing of others' testimonies regarding the Book of Mormon.

By the way, I visited your blog and I enjoyed your beautiful pictures and artwork!

Mogie said...

I stumbled upon your post. I am glad I did. It lifted my spirit. I too served in Guatemala. I think one of the greatest things about the Book of Mormon especially when read in spanish is it's simplicity. God Loves his children and wants us to understand his plan. While in Guatemala I taught on a simple foundation and priciples. When ever I get caught up in the craziness that life brings I try to settle back on that same foundation. I need to reread the B of M in spanish again. Thanks for sharing!

dp said...

Mogie,

Thank you for your comment. After looking at your blog, I can see that I served there about 10 years after you did.

I agree with your comment about the simplicity of the Book of Mormon in Spanish.

On a side note, another thing I like is the fact that in Spanish there is a distinction between you (single) and you (plural). In English it isn't so apparent.

Blog Kangaroo said...

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Dr. B said...

I added your two blogs to my site aggregator. Could you please help to attract new users to the Mormon Blogosphere aggregator? Also could you set blogger to allow feeds so I can feed your first three lines on my aggregator.

Copy and paste the following code into your HTML/JavaScript widget, then take out the # signs:

<#a href="http://mormonblogosphere.blogspot.com/"><#img src="http://i101.photobucket.com/albums/m49/clbruno/Temple20Square-1-2.jpg"/><#/a>

Thanks.

http://mormonblogosphere.blogspot.com/


Dr. B.

Emily said...

Thanks for your testimony; The Book of Mormon has spiritually awakened me. Everything good that I experience in my life has come because of the fruits of this book. I have such a close relationship with my Savior when I study from it each day. There is a real power and spirit that touches my heart each time I read it. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

Nephi Mormon said...

Like others who have posted here, I also had to read the Book of Mormon several times before I found it to be true. I first met with the missionaries in the summer of 1994 but after many years of studying and praying, I was truly converted in March of 2008.