For years, my Mormonism revolved around fear. Fear of losing my family, fear of being unacceptable, fear of rejection, fear of being unworthy, fear of my sexual impulses, fear, fear, fear to the core.
About a year ago, I realized that was no way to live. I began to live out of faith in God's goodness.
But I never extended that faith to the God of Mormonism. I assumed He was still what I'd always thought Him to be: scary, strict, demanding, unforgiving. He wasn't good. He was a distant stake president on a cloud somewhere who cared about me the way I assume my stake president does -- theoretically, not personally; out of obligation, not sincerity.
I had a long conversation with a good friend this afternoon and she asked:
"Have you ever lived Mormonism out of faith?"The answer is:
"No, I don't think I have. I've never lived Mormonism out of faith in God's goodness."
I'm left wondering: what does Mormonism looks like when it's filtered through the lens of a loving God, not a punitive one? I've decided to give it a try. I have a feeling I might discover a very different religion than the one I rejected.
And I think it's the only way to give it a real shot.