Monday, July 30, 2012

How About Honest Conversation for a Change?

Mormon Missionaries,
I thought my house had been black listed, but they came by again the other day. I was weeding in the front yard. They offered to help. I told them no thank you, and they stood there looking like hurt puppy dogs for another ten minutes trying to make hapless conversation with me.
I don’t really know what it is. But for the most part, I find them annoying. I try to get over it, and look at it as a time to talk about Christ, share Jesus with them and so on. But really what is going on in the back of my head is, “won’t you please go annoy someone else?” Really, I’m busy, I have goals for my work today, and you are not going to help me get to them. I suspect most people feel the same way, probably even worse when they come by. It has to be a bit hard on them. They seem clueless.
They asked me how long I’d been in Utah. I tell them eight years. Then they ask me if I had ever seen Mormon Missionaries before? I asked where they were from, they told me Georgia and Tennessee. I asked them if they had ever seen a Southern Baptist. By this time, I’m feeling a little sorry for them. They are trying. But the whole thing is awkward. I know why they are there, but they won’t get around to it. At least they are being more polite than the last two that came to my door. But they going no where with this conversation. Finally I ask them if they want a glass of water.
They start asking me about my rock tumbler and so on. I really can’t remember all the details of this conversation. But eventually, I think I asked them to basically get on with it. The one had mentioned that at one point he stopped believing in god. They don’t believe in God as mormons. Their concept of god is so foreign I don’t even give them deist status anymore. They believe in a comic book hero. But in anycase I asked him how he got to where he was. He started talking about childhood abuse that led him not to believe in god anymore, but now he believes god loves everyone, he’s so good to all of us.
I don’t know. I mean yes God is good. He gives everyone their daily bread, even all evil people. But I found it strange, not really, that the kid doesn’t point to the cross as evidence of God’s love for us, but to material things. I think this may not work for everyone… It might lead some to think God hates them.
Well anyway I started to press a little here and there. Giving them opportunity to explain what they believe. I was trying to be as civil as I possibly could. They were answering as evasively as they could. This seems a strange tactic. Be honest about what you believe and about what your organization teaches. It makes no sense to be evasive about it. They told me about some woman who had lost their child, and they had told her she would be reunited with the child in heaven. And this is where I about lost it. How do you know that I asked? That is what I feel said the kid. Really based on a feeling you are going to tell some woman she will be reunited with the child in heaven? Get out of here. You don’t know where that Child is, or where that woman will be. Even if the woman wants to go to heaven, she has no guarantee in your system that she will get there. It’s not up to her in any way according to their system. I pointed this out to them. If her husband doesn’t call her, the game is up.
This is where it get’s interesting. They tell me I can’t tell them what they believe because I can’t look into their heart. Right. I can’t. I responded telling them to take a look at their tags. I told them when they put those on in the morning they had decided to represent that organization, which by the way is the most corrupt political machine in the state of Utah, and possibly the United States. I really like how they build one of the biggest and most expensive malls in the country and then get tax exemptions for being a non profit. Right. But I said, you are representing them and what they teach. I don’t have time to hear every mormon out on personal beliefs. I continued, “now, if you are questioning the teachings of this organization in your heart, that is great. I commend you for it. But that also means you are lying when you put that tag on in the morning and being dishonest about what you believe. People go to hell for lying. If I were you I’d give that a little thought. I can tell you what you believe. I’ve studied it. I’ve read your Book of Mormon, which you also lie about because Mormons don’t really believe that book either, it has little bearing on your morality or your concept of God, I read the “Doctrine and Covenants”, I read “The Pearl of Great price,” I’ve even read and studied your little “Gospel Principles” and if you aren’t willing to own up to what those things say, then you are lying about what you believe. As it is you are already going around blaspheming God door to door, now you are lying as you do that. You will go to hell for that. You can of course repent and be forgiven, and I’d give some thought to that.”
They didn’t want to give thought. They made up an excuse to jet out of there. And I suppose that is the most annoying part. I figure when I’m in those conversations, that I should give the person I initiated it with plenty of time to think, talk, and ask questions. If I really do have to go, I can at least ask to come back and hear what they have to say. But the reality is, these kids aren’t interested in that. They really are taught to be as rude as possible in that way. They are taught to avoid conversation and honest dialogue. And I suppose that is why I was reluctant to even start talking to them in the first place. They ran, and no, they did not ask if there was a better time to come back.

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