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.