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She understandably found this offensive because it suggested that cancer was depending on how you looked at it a kind of punishment or reward for a life well-lived. Frankly, death by cancer is a terrible way to learn any kind of directed spiritual message.
I do believe they were trying to be helpful. In doing so, they found it necessary to judge my mom. Whether their judgment was meant to be kind of cruel, condemning or praising, it was a judgment best left to Our Creator. Can I suggest a better solution? A God who answers the tiny requests of Mormons at the drop of a hat would reasonably be answerable for all the natural disasters of the world. Anything that brings us to set aside our frustration for a moment will help us think more clearly. He has enough on His plate.
Jason L grew up in Arizona as a Mormon Democrat with a lawyer father — and heard all the jokes. All posts by Jason L. Very well articulated. I have prayed to find keys, lost contacts, etc and in most every case I was guided to find them. Perhaps it is just taking the time-out and thinking that does the trick. I have a sister with leukemia and she is not getting better.
After prayers and fasting, priesthood blessings etc, yes asking to find keys, seems trivial in comparison. As far as the book your mom received, I think we do make up reasons for our afflictions. They make our mortal brains somehow feel better?? I agree though that it is probably better to leave that up to God. His ways are not our ways.
We just have to chuckle at our mortality and the funny things we do to make sense of the insensible.
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Thanks for sharing your experiences. I agree that laughter is often the best approach to the theological thorniness of our lives. Fair enough.
Though I do think even imperfectly remembered experiences can be helpful in thinking through how we approach our faith. I think many others may suffer in similar ways. Am I reconciling all the ironies here? I agree. I remember on my mission reading this book about how we could basically force miracles through this highly scripted method of exercising faith.
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I was eager for miracles, so I tried it for a while. There were all these promises you made and ways to specify outcomes and work to do. It actually got in the way of the success I was looking for. Thanks for the post. This is something that catches all of us short at one time or another. Yes, evil is allowed its day and people may choose to be partners with it or enablers of it — but Auschwitz? Independent of intended evil, mortality exacts a toll in pain as well. While I will continue to read and ponder, for me the most profitable fallback position is to exercise humility and faith in Jesus Christ.
I believe him. Thanks for your thoughts. I, too, have thought about the Pres. Kimball talk you mention. And I like his points about the complicated ways that agency shapes our lives. It is not only the God of Lost Keys that is a problem sometimes leading to judgment of others.
That has also been true of the God of Moroni as usually ripped from context Moroni addressed his comments only to the Lamanites — whoever they are and applied to everyone with a sincere heart, real intent, and faith [not certainty] in Christ. These things are always better taken in context.
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I am frantically searching for my keys. I stop, say a prayer, quiet the verbal side of my brain, and listen for an answer. This frees up space for the nonverbal part of my brain to tell me where I left the keys usually as an idea or picture. As an artist, this is exactly how all my best creativity works. Overall, I see it as a positive that the church unwittingly teaches us how to use our nonverbal and other parts of the brain by calling it the Holy Ghost.
There are downsides of course.
Very good thoughts. I have had generally the same thoughts, including in the comments that on my mission that my actions could override another persons free agency to join the church. I could never reconcile that even though I was an obedient missionary. The thing that bothers me the most when I think of this is the pain that it causes people. Read the Bible dictionary entry on Prayer.
However Philippians suggests that we should pray to God over every little thing; but we should admit that God will choose what to do about it. Thanks Sam. Perhaps some will say, 'Yes, you are correct. What you and Packer insist is the focus of our requests on behalf of lost souls, we deny. We do pray for them, but not in the terms you have expressed.
My purpose is simply to make the latter point clear.
Perhaps, at the end of the day, one might conclude that open theists are correct in declining to ask God to save human souls. That is not my concern. I wish to focus solely on the fact that such is precisely what they must do. The reason for this is found in their notion of libertarian freedom, to which we now turn our attention. Libertarian Freedom: A Definition. Clark Pinnock believes that 'Scripture, like human experience itself, assumes libertarian freedom, i. If I am free in this sense, then whether or not the action is performed depends on me; by deciding to perform the action I bring it about that things happen in a certain way, quite different from some other, equally possible, way things might have happened had I refrained from the action.
It is within the agent's self-determining ability to change her desires. According to David Basinger, for a person to be free he must have it within his power?
God's Heart for the Lost
Both A and not A could actually occur; which will actually occur has not yet been determined. Libertarian freedom recognizes the power of contrary choice. One acts freely in a situation if, and only if, one could have done otherwise. Free choices are choices that are not causally determined by conditions preceding them.
‘Environmentalism is a false god for lost souls’
It is the freedom of self-determination, in which the various motives and influences informing the choice are not the sufficient cause of the choice itself. The person makes the choice in a self-determined way. A person has options and there are different factors influencing us in deciding among them but the decision one takes involves making one of the reasons one's own, which is anything but random.