Sunday, October 16, 2011

Asleep in the Light



Something that has been weighing heavily on my heart is sharing the gospel. There is so much in Scripture that those around us don’t have that my heart is breaking. I was re-reading the biography of a tremendously godly Christian who was passionate about finding the truth. Even before He learned about Jesus as the Savior he was searching for truth. He tried everything in that all consuming desire, even some harmful things. But he was honest enough to eliminate them from his life when he found them to be false. Once he found the Savior, he put everything he had into serving Him. He literally poured out his life for his God. Yet often while reading his journey my heart would weep for all that he was missing. I questioned why the Lord never sent LDS missionaries to him during his deep and honest search for the truth. I’ve often wondered that about myself. When I was learning about the gospel in my teen years, why didn’t heavenly Father send missionaries to me? It would have prevented much pain in my life to know all the truth from the beginning. As much as people on TV joke about Mormon missionaries. I had never spoken to one in my life until the night I went over to try and convert the children’s piano teacher. I have to believe that there was a reason God waited for me to know the truth.

I wanted this brother to know the truth too, though he died in the 80s. I did look up on family search to see if his ordinances were done. If they hadn’t, one of you dear brothers was going to get a call asking you to perform them for me. After his wife passes, I will be thrilled to do her ordinances. But, that may not even be necessary. I’m drawing up a letter to share the restored gospel with her. I’m praying she reads it and gives it real prayer and consideration. I’m sure her husband will do all he can from his side of the veil to make sure it gets in her hands.

Which leads to what has been on my heart. There are so many people who do not have the gospel. People we see every day and never talk to. What excuse do we have for such apathy?  The brother, whose biography I mentioned wrote a song about this very topic called Asleep in the Light. Here are the lyrics: (A word of warning. He was a no compromise sort of man and his lyrics are always quite blunt. When you know his heart though, you are not offended).

Do you see, do you see, All the people sinking down?

Don’t you care, don’t you care, Are you gonna let them drown?

How can you be do numb, not to care if they come?

You close your eyes and pretend the job’s done.


"Oh bless me Lord, bless me Lord", You know it’s all I ever hear,

No one aches, no one hurts. No one even sheds one tear.

But he cries, he weeps, he bleeds. And he cares for your needs.

And you just lay back And keep soaking it in

Oh can’t you see it’s such a sin!


’Cause he brings people to you door, and you turn them away as you smile and say

"God bless you, be at peace." And all heaven just weeps.

’Cause Jesus came to you door. You’ve left him out on the streets.


Open up, open up, and give yourself away. You see the need, you hear the cries.

So how can you delay? God’s calling and you’re the one, but like Jonah you run.

He’s told you to speak, but you keep holding it in.

Oh can’t you see it’s such a sin!


The world is sleeping in the dark.

And the church just won’t fight,  ’cause it’s asleep in the light.

How can you be so dead when you’ve been so well fed?

Jesus rose from the grave- And you, you can’t even get out of bed.

Now I know we often want to share the gospel with those around us, but feel at a loss as to how to do it without being offensive to our neighbors and acquaintances. This has been on my heart a lot, especially with how much our faith has been in the news. This is a good thing, because people are more open to discussing it right now. Let’s use this to our advantage. I was praying through how to share the gospel with my neighbors. To be honest, I don’t even know most of them. Plus, we live in a bad neighborhood so we tend to keep to ourselves. But, I think I have an idea that is useful no matter what neighborhood you live in. We’ve gotten a bunch of Books of Mormon and are wrapping them in ribbon with an invitation to an open house at my home. I’ve got a night blocked out where anyone who is curious about what Mormons believe can come and ask questions. I’ll have refreshments there, and the missionaries have already agreed to be there as well. Even if no one shows up, at least I will have gotten the Book of Mormon in their hands. When they are ready, they will open it up. They’ll have my contact information in it if they ever have any questions. I’m so excited about this! Let’s not continue to watch people drown all around us. Let’s get rid of our apathy. No more hording the light we’ve been blessed with.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

The Opportunities Before Us

moon missionaries

I had a dream last night that I was back in an evangelical church. Not as a member, but with acquaintances. During the dream I realized just how much of the gospel they were missing and my heart was burdened with the loss. These were good, godly people who loved the Lord. I wanted them to know Him completely. To realize the parts of the gospel they were missing. At the same time I knew, as I was sharing with them, that they weren’t going to receive my testimony. Yet, I felt compelled to give it anyway.

I think sometimes it can be easy to forget how rich we are in Christ. Not just because of the atonement, but because of the restored gospel. I don’t want to go back to a life without the indwelling Spirit to constantly guide and comfort me. I don’t want a life without priesthood  and patriarchal blessings. I love that we have an eternity of learning and growth ahead of us. I love the mercy God shows to those who never had an opportunity to hear the gospel. I love the fellowship I have with my Father now. I had fellowship with Him before my conversion of course, but it is different now. Richer. The closest I can come to explaining it is the difference between black and white 2D and full color 3D.

There is a song that I am planning on singing at church sometime that has a line that goes, “I want to take your word and shine it all around”. That is how I feel. I think Heavenly Father wants us to feel that way. I read a passage today that warmed me with desire. Jesus, speaking to someone He had just healed and who wanted to stay with Him forever, said “….tell them how great things the Lord hath done for thee, and hath had compassion on thee.” Mark 5:19.  Think about all the things God has done for us. The love, compassion, mercy, and forgiveness. The fellowship, friendship, and comfort. Where would we be without Him? I am looking for opportunities to share Him so others can have the same joy.

Mormonism is in the spotlight right now because of the upcoming presidential election. I recently had an evangelical acquaintance express frustration on Facebook that Governor Perry said Mormonism wasn’t a cult and that Pat Robertson said Romney was a good Christian man. He felt like these men had compromised their faith by accepting Mormonism. I knew his comment would imply that Mormonism was indeed a cult and  It felt impossible to let his comment go unchecked, so I responded. I was sort of hoping it would open up an opportunity to discuss Mormonism publicly, but so far it hasn’t.

Mitt Romney has opened the doors for us to share our faith. We cannot waste these opportunities. I know it can be frightening sometimes, but remember the words of the Savior. “Whosoever therefore shall be ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation; of him also shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he cometh in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.” To me, that is more frightening.  Let’s think about the people around us and open the door to a glorious eternity for them. Let’s really use wisely the opportunities before us.