Friday, October 24, 2008

There's no place like home and this post is for you Shaila and my last notes on Education Week and the longest title of a post you have ever seen!

Gosh, there is no place like home. It's always fun to have some place to go but it is even better when it is time to come home. I came home to a mountain load of work and had to work overtime this week but it's good to be back. And now it's time to catch up with blogging!

Shaila has kindly asked (more than once I'm embarassed to say) for me to post about the last class that I attended at Ed. Week. It was my favorite of all of the classes that I went to. It was one given by Michael S. Wilcox and it was about how to have a more zion like society.

Brother Wilcox based his talk on Romans chapter 14 and especially this verse: 3 Let not him that eateth despise him that eateth not; and let not him which eateth not judge him that eateth: for God hath received him.

He talked about how the members of the church that were eating meat despised those who did not eat meat and those who did not eat meat judged those who were eating meat. He said that Paul had a letter signed by all the apostles stating that is was alright to eat meat and that Paul could have just shown that letter to all involved but Paul wanted the people to think and to learn a lesson by persuading them to choose the right instead of just telling them to.

He then talked about that there are things in the church that are black and white that we know we must do and that are commandments. But then he talked about those things in the church that are more grey areas and are not really so-called "commandments". And with those "grey areas" there are those who "despise" those who don't do them and there are those in the church who "judge" those who do. When he has given this talk in a classroom setting, he has asked his class to discuss what some of those things are, but because this was such a big group, he just told us what his classes came up with.

So here are some things that his classes came up with:

1. Drinking coke. There are those who don't see anything wrong with drinking Coke or Pepsi and then there are those who would never lift a can to their lips.

2. White shirts. Some people are adamant that men MUST wear a white shirt to church and then there are those who wear a shirt of color.

3. Wearing nylons. Some women think that you should NEVER go to church with bare legs.

4. Traveling on Sunday. Hey it's no big deal to travel on a Sunday, right? I mean, come on, we're on vacation and we only have so many days and so we have to travel on a Sunday. Then there are those who don't think we should take a vacation from obeying the commandments so that the Lord won't take a vacation from us when we are in need of something.

5. Wearing shorts. Some church members feel that as soon as you have gone through the temple that you should NEVER wear shorts ever again, because no matter how you sit or how long the shorts are, you can see potentially see your "Rocky Mountain Surfer Suit" (mormon secret code words for "g------s")

We could go on and on. I'm sure that you can even think of some more examples, but I will end here.

So, now we have these coke-drinking, blue shirt wearing, short shorts people who travel on Sunday despising the non-coke drinking, white shirt wearing, stay-at-home on Sunday, nylon donning people who are judging the coke drinkers.

Bro. Wilcox boiled it down to this which is what Paul was trying to teach the people.
We should base our decisions on charity and not rights. Do people have a right to wear blue shirt to church? They absolutely do! But if they know that it might bother someone, why not choose to wear a white one? Does someone have a right not to drink Coke? They absolutely do. But they should not judge or make someone else feel wrong for doing so.

Do we have rights to do certain things? We absolutely do. But if we know that it will cause contention with others, we should be charitable in what we decide to do. This is the key to having a more Zion-like society and the answer to the question "Can't we just all get along?"
I LOVED this class and this thought.

Phew! There you go Shaila! Wow, this post was so long that I've really worked up a good sweat. I think I'm going to go to the frig and get me an ice cold Coke.


Lisa Loo said...

What a great post! I miss you and all your wonderfulness! That is one of my big bugaboos--why is it that we just can'tplay nice and it does go beyond just following rules---thanx for sharing--I am one who needs constant reminders!

Mechelle said...

Great post.

We visited my parents this year. As we traveled home, (not on Sunday), my son asked me why we did not drink coke. I told him that we did not feel it was good for our bodies and that we felt it was part of the WW.

Then he asked me why grandpa did. It cut my heart. My son worships his grandpa who is a card carrying member. I had to explain how we all make different choices and we need to love everyone no matter what their choices are.

Good talk. It is something we all deal with. I find the answer is love. If we truly love with a Christ like love, there is never a problem. m

McEwens said...

Hey Deb! I am glad you decided to post this! Your notes are way better than the ones I took on the phone when we were talking about it!

cookingsherri said...

So I am not supposed to have a "holier than thou" attitude? Dang, I might as well drink Coke and travel on Sunday. Hahahaha!

Great post. Love the principles involved. I have been anxiously waiting your return to you blog:)

Anonymous said...

Love the title!

Great post. I agree whole heartedly.

I grew up in a ward with lots of, let's say, radical thoughts.

Multiple letters was sent to Salt Lake from some of our ward members reguarding eating sugar. Brown vs white, whole vs processed, etc.

People starting using the debate on Fast Sundays, in lue of their testimonies.

S.L. finally sent a letter back, to be read over the pulpit.

It basically said this..."eating brown, white, or processed sugar will not keep you out of the Celestial Kingdom. But arguing about it will."

That ended the debate!

craigandlissa said...

Debbie, thanks for the great post. Michael Wilcox was always my favorite speaker at seminary symposium and I was able to use those notes over and over as I taught. Thanks again for sharing.

Scrappy Girl said...

Great thoughts...I am not LDS but I know that the little "differences" can sometimes creep into a church and cause big problems. I unfortunately have seen these split a church.

RhondaLue said...

I love this post! I am one of those people that judge others for judging someone else for drinking/not drinking coke. I'm all "why you all gotta be so dang judgemental!?"

he he

Really though, we need to focus on our own growth/difficulties/strengths, etc. and not worry about the next guy.

Hey, saw you post a comment to MG about blogstalker...fill me in! I'm a stalker of blogstalker so if he/she's a freak please tell me!

Mother Goose said...

i like it, i live by as for me and my house we will do this, what you do in your house is completely up to you and has no impact on me whatsoever.

you can wear colored shirts, i heard it is not recommended if you pass or bless the sacrament but that disgresssion is up to the bishop.

Todd said...

Missed you and glad you're home safe and sound!! Love your thoughts - you are such a kind person. I agree that we should try to create peace, not contention, in our lives. Even if we disagree - we can at least be kind.

Todd said...

Sorry - that was redhoodoos above. =)

Anonymous said...

that is a seriously GREAT post! i loved every word of it!!!!! ♥

Jan said...

Love this.

I remember once someone asked me on a Sunday if I wanted some candy. I said I was fasting. It wasn't fast Sunday that day either.
She said I wasn't doing a fast right and it wouldn't work because I was chewing gum. She followed me to the Primary room saying all sorts of rude things about my chewing gum choice. And that I was trying to suppress my appetite by chewing it. What? I told it was simply for my breath. I was so glad my heart was right that day. I don't think gum was an issue with the Lord. Do you?

The Boones! said...

Oh Deb! You astound me with your awesomeness! I love that you posted this- thanks for the effort in doing so. In my *extensive* (notice the sarcasm here) experience in life, it seems that it comes down to caring about others more than we care about ourselves, thus the great commandment to love others as we love ourselves. I have a little "guage" I like to use on myself to see how my decisions will affect others and that is "Is this selfish or selfless" and that helps to guide my actions- I think that when we look at the examples of Christ and Satan, we see selflessness and selfishness. Thus our way to see who we are truly following! Thanks for the talk- it really hit home and helped me watch how I really do treat others! You are a gem!

da Bergs said...

Okay... so, WHAT kind of COLD DRINK did you go get after posting this??!!!! I mean... I need to know! LOL!!!

Deb, I love you! I have been in Utah, so I am just now getting to this post!!! THANK YOU!!!! It is a great one! I love Wilcox! I will use this in my Insitute class!!! AND... do ya wanna meet at the temple one day???

Pedaling said...

Bro wilcox teaches a class here in our stake every single week. all who go just rave about him....i seriously n need to start attending his classes.
great post.

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