Many of you know I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, commonly known as the Mormons. I was 14 years old when I started going to church by myself. For various reasons my family stopped going to church and of course it hurt a little bit. But I kept going and seeing the blessings. I’ve never found a good enough reason for me to stop going and I think it’s because there is none. I’ve never wanted to stop going and I hope I never will. This isn’t usually something I share so openly with people but I do want to talk about it now. The main question I am always asked by people is
“Why do you keep going to church?”
I choose to go to church every Sunday. I choose to make the gospel a priority in my life. I choose to live by it’s teachings and principles. It all makes sense to me and I choose to live this way.
I choose to go to church because I feel so deep in my heart that it is right. No one can tell me what I can or cannot feel. That is something only I can experience for myself. So why would I choose not to go to church when I feel so strongly about it? I have had so many faith building experiences throughout my life that has caused my heart to expand, to overflow, and I choose to let those experiences affect me spiritually. In my most difficult trials I choose to turn to the Lord and let Him guide and help me. And I have found that in those darkest times I have been my happiest and I know that it is because of the Atonement and the gospel. So why would I choose not to live this way?
The gospel of Jesus Christ helps me to understand my purpose. It helps me to know how I can fill the measure of my creation. It answers my questions about where I came from, why I am here, and where I am going after this life. It helps me to understand that death is not the end and because of that I am not scared. It brings me happiness because I know, for sure, that I will be with my family again even after death. It gives me reason to believe that if I desire something, I can obtain it. It provides a light at the end of the tunnel. It helps me to understand others better. It helps me to grow and develop in ways I could not outside of the church. It shows me my talents and gifts. It helps me to help others.
So I ask, again, why would I choose not to go to church?
I have read the scriptures, but not just read, I have studied them, pondered them, and taught from them, and I feel so deep in my heart that they are true. And it sounds kind of strange and maybe even creepy, but I have actually prayed about it and received a confirmation of this through the spirit. And no one can tell me what I can or cannot feel. It is something only I can experience for myself.
One of my favourite scriptures is Mosiah 2:41
“And moreover, I would desire that ye should consider on the blessed and happy state of those that keep the commandments of God. For behold, they are blessed in all things, both temporal and spiritual; and if they hold out faithful to the end they are received into heaven, that thereby they may dwell with God in a state of never-ending happiness. O remember, remember that these things are true; for the Lord God hath spoken it.”
I feel so strongly in my heart that this is true. I choose to live this way because it makes me happy. I have seen the blessings and miracles that happen in my life because of the gospel. This is why I choose to go to church.