I was able to wake up early this morning and hike a 7 mile loop in the Sierra Nevadas from Kingsbury South to Kingsbury North. I only saw one other human being in the entire 3 hours I was in the bowels of the mountains. I was able to find a secluded high spot to talk with God. I wanted to make sure I would not be under condemnation for pursuing and embracing what I now believe to be true. I am feeling so sure that my church is not the only true church on the earth. In fact, I feel like there are many things it teaches that simply are not true. I have worried that I was under the influence of Satan for having these thoughts or that I was “fallen,” but since I read my scriptures every day, pray, attend church, magnify my callings, pay my tithes and offerings and do everything an active, temple recommend holding member of our church is supposed to do, I cannot believe the adversary has power over me.
Plus, I have been praying for God to help me resolve my questions. I have been praying for my Father to show me what is true and to help me find the answers to my questions and day by day, book by book, teacher by teacher, He has been illuminating my path. And it’s a different path than the one I have been walking as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. He has not said the Mormon church is not true. He has just confirmed to me that any religion that draws His children to Him and to their fellowmen is loved by Him. In fact, his children do not need a religion to do this if they do it on their own. Religion provides useful scaffolding for those who want and need it. It’s kind of like a pre-assembled meal kit you can buy that contains all the great ingredients needed to make a wonderful, delicious meal. But for individuals who want to cook up their own creations, it will not be a good fit. In fact, organized religion for seekers feels like an unnecessary middleman that prevents one from experiencing the divine directly.
So I decided before making a final move I would like to formally go before God one last time to make sure I was not deceived nor being led astray– for I feel my convictions growing stronger each day.
I climbed to the highest point of the mount just as prophets of old. I kneeled before my maker and poured out my heart–just as I’ve been doing for as long as I can remember. I told God my worry about becoming enticed by the “philosophies of men.” I expressed my concern about being led astray and I explained how I did not want to do anything that would cause me to lose my soul. I told him my only desire has always been to do His will and His will only. I have only ever wanted to live a life pleasing unto Him.
I reiterated my desires to love fully as He loves, to serve, to grow, to learn, and ultimately, to become as He is. I begged him to stop me if following my heart and newfound convictions were incorrect. I told him I did not want to lead my children astray. I told him I took the teachings from my childhood and young adult life seriously and that I understood them to mean that I could be deceived and that is why I wanted him to stop me from being an apostate if pursuing the additional light and truth I had found were not correct.
And then I stopped talking. And I sat silent.
There was no angel, no darkness, no thing but peace, calm, and a sure confidence that I would not be condemned for following what I felt I was being led to do. In fact, I felt love and encouragement.
God and I made a pact up there high in that mountain. A pact I’ve had for awhile now, but was more or less formalized in this Sacred Spot. We have a “Truth Pact.”
I am to gather light, truth and knowledge and share it.
I am to do no harm and to love others fully.
I am to follow my heart and to teach others to do the same.
I am to make everywhere a little better.
I am to support others in their beliefs for I believe everyone must walk their own spiritual path and come to their own realizations.
I hope to never make anyone feel inferior for their beliefs or to act like I’m more enlightened than they. I want simply to manifest God’s love in all that I do and continue to enjoy the fruits of the spirit which are peace, happiness, love, and joy. That is why I know I am not being led astray. If I were, I would not feel these feelings that are fruits of the spirit, and I know God would not continue to lead me in this direction if it were not His plan for me.
I hope to revisit my “Sacred Spot” in the Sierra Nevadas at a later date and time. A future day when I will remember with fondness the day “where two roads diverged in the woods and I took the one less traveled by” and it made all the difference!
For right now, I’m simply enjoying the journey!