I was born into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and as an adult, I studied hard, I prayed, contemplated, played “sacred” music, did relaxation techniques, and tried more strictly to live what I thought was the gospel of Christ. The more I tried, the more different modalities I looked at, the more unhappy I seemed to become. This search was done trying to balance a semblance of order within the confines that the LDS Church would allow. I spent hours counseling with bishops, stake presidents, institute teachers and friends. My happiness seemed to hinge on someone else.
My family needed to follow me into this perfect family scenario that I had somehow envisioned in the LDS philosophy. I studied the Book of Mormon and couldn’t find that part about “Families are Forever”, but I dismissed the holes as problems with leaders/church and not as problems with the gospel. My children dismissed my yearning for them to come to church and get happy as an, “Oh, Mom.” They could see that church didn’t really bring me happiness, but they teased me and let me wallow in the church driven searching, for perfection that never comes. It is like constantly going one more mile and then just two more and never reaching any destination, but feeling a constant gut wrenching known to many as the Mormon psyche. I felt that I was a failure as a mother in Zion. I wept many times at my perceived failures and tried to reconcile what I had been given when compared with the mothers who had seen every one of their children “sealed” in the temple. I love my children and I couldn’t see things any differently for them, but the constant images in my head of how things should be were like a voice in my head screaming “failure”.
Then in October of 2005, I was led by two different friends who were also “searching” to the http://www.thesealedportion.com/ site. Actually, one sent me to Sealed Portion site which made no sense to me at all and when the second led me to http://www.thesealedportion.com/, I was immediately drawn in. Happily when I went to that site and began reading, things just fell into place. Questions I had about why the church leadership wasn’t acting as representatives of Christ is because they weren’t. They were acting on their own vain imaginations. I had already figured out that Gordon B. Hinckley wasn’t truly a prophet, and knew that my time before I needed to get a new temple recommend was getting short. You see, I was still trying to fit what I wanted with what I knew and still tried to fit into that mold of a “faithful” LDS woman. I needed to find some answers before I had to renew my recommend the following May. I knew I couldn’t answer the question about President Hinckley being a prophet in good conscience and I didn’t know how to reconcile not carrying a temple recommend either. I was really in a pickle. I had met several women during this time that had just walked away from the church and I wondered silently if I ever could. I started reading TSP and couldn’t wait to return to more reading, I read and read until I had finished that book.
The freedom I found in leaving the church came as I sold or gave away more than three bookcases of church doctrine books and felt even freer. I began to really listen to my own voice, I began experimenting with living the gospel. You know that part about doing unto others—the real heart of the gospel. I’ve found that happiness doesn’t depend on what others do, but what I do unto others. It hasn’t been a perfect transition if one wants a prescription, but it has been an enjoyable one. I’ve laughed more, felt more at peace than I can ever remember, and just enjoyed more days than not. The heaviness I used to feel somewhere inside me—that gnawing that never seems to go away, just left and a sweet peace took its place. If ever I feel that gnawing come back, I know I’m off track and make the corrections I need to and again feel that comfort and peace I’d been looking for for so many years.
The following sums up what I’ve learned. It still rings true to me, I know there are stumbling blocks in TSP for those who are looking for them, but I haven’t felt the desire to go there to prove or disprove anything. I found what I was looking for and I feel the peace that I was wanting.
TSP 58:89 "And the Holy Ghost, who is one with the Father and the Son, shall teach these things unto all of us, even by giving us peace and happiness when we keep this great commandment of God. 90 And when the Spirit hath withdrawn itself from us, because we do not keep this commandment, then we are left unto ourselves and feel misery, strife, depression, loneliness, and pain. 91 Therefore, judge ye yourselves whether ye are at peace with yourselves and whether ye are happy. And if ye are honest with yourselves, then ye can judge righteously whether or not ye are prepared to enter into the kingdom of God and partake of His eternal happiness, which He hath offered us, forever. 92 And if ye are not at peace with yourself, ye shall be miserable and unsettled and continually searching for that peace and happiness that eludeth you. 93 Therefore, my beloved brothers and sisters, do unto others that which ye would have them do unto you, and ye shall be one with Christ, who is one with God, who is the Father who desireth that all of His children be one with Him."
I've followed the work for many years and I'd become what was considered being an enemy to this work. I was not happy in my experimentation with the "word" as I once called it. I am happy once again have found the peace and happiness I was searching for. To me the only solution to the unhappiness caused by the poverty of the world is found in the solutions found within The Humanity Party. The only peace I've found comes from within and the only happiness I can have in this life is by following the one assigned to be our True Messenger. He has words for healing the sickness within ourselves and our society.
If anyone wants to know more of my own personal journey, I'm happy to share, but to me the most important thing to me is that I have found and I treasure "The Pearl of Great Price." It truly is a Marvelous Work and a Wonder.