Saturday, July 13, 2013

Confessions of a Mormon Girl: The Mattress Shopping and Mormon Collision

Our bed is like a taco---- high on the edges and scooped-out-low in the middle (and we've only had the thing for one measly year). And, as much as I love that Kendall boy, I was getting a little tired of us hopping into bed on our respective sides and slowly, helplessly rolling towards each other to meet in the middle. It was annoying and squishy. The worst part is what it's doing to my back. Every morning I wake up sore from sleeping on a hill. Not fun.

It was time for us to go mattress shopping. We did our homework and decided we will never buy the cheapest tolerable memory foam mattress we can find. It was a bust the first time, so we were changing our ways.

The 3rd mattress store into our quest, we met Mike. Mike was different than the previous sales guys from the other two mattress stores and even the ones we had encountered while looking for our taco bed. He politely greeted us, gave a quick explanation on how the store was laid out, and hurried back to his desk in the corner, allowing us to pick out our very own mattress (not the one he wanted us to buy). It was lovely; I immediately liked Mike.

After a solid twenty minutes of lounging on the inventory, Mike made some small talk, cracked a couple jokes laced with a couple compliments, and then very matter-of-factly commented, "You must be Mormon."

Taken by surprise (we had barely said anything to Mike up until this point and had made absolutely no reference about church amongst ourselves), we asked, "How did your KNOW?"

He kind of chuckled, saying that Mormons were easy to spot. Still dumbfounded but pleased (I mean, might as well call an apple an apple), we asked, "Are you Mormon too?"

Mike explained that he was not Mormon but had many Mormon friends, including a really close friend in our Stake Presidency (a small group of Mormon leadership who preside over a large-ish geographic region of Mormons). He agreed with and respected many Mormon beliefs and views on family, the reason for the Book of Mormon, and values Mormon's try their best to live.

Within the next two hours or so (we were being very serious mattress shoppers), Mike told us that the Mormon missionaries have even met with him a couple times. Kendall asked why he isn't Mormon yet (he seemed to really like Mormon stuff). Mike replied, "It's the going to church every Sunday part."

Kendall and I were surprised. Of all of the things practiced within the Mormon religion, it had never really crossed my mind that going to church every singles Sunday would be a challenge for some. It makes sense though. We do go for a full THREE hours of church every Sunday. It is a lot compared to most other churches I've known.

Mike said he was even willing to pay 10% tithing (Kendall had a theory that that's the thing probably most challenging to commit to when deciding to be a Mormon). But, Mike said 10% tithing is biblical (which it is) and he would probably give less in tithing that he would end up giving to a collection plate anyhow.

I liked hearing Mike's Mormon opinions. It's really refreshing to hear a blunt (well as blunt as he could be....he was still trying to sell us a mattress after all) outsider take on something that's so familiar, special to me, and interwoven into possibly every facet of my life.

But upon leaving all of those mattresses and Mike (yes, we did end up buying from Mike...thank heavens.....can't wait to sleep on a perfectly flat bed tonight!), our conversations have replayed in my thoughts over and over and over again like a broken record.

I sure wish I could have been blunt with my opinions too, maybe a could have been....but I can't say I've been blessed with the gift of gab, everyday eloquence, or spur of the moment teaching expertise. Plus, I'm not sure being right in the middle of a mattress store as a man is trying to sell you something expensive is the best time to bear your heart and soul on any kind of matter.

I once made the quick realization that it's really exciting to share good news. My thoughts had drifted  to how it must feel to be the person to call the winner of a large sweepstakes to inform them they've just won millions of dollars. I also thought about what a doctor must feel like when they tell a patient they're  officially cancer-free. Both are life changing encounters. I slightly envied the messenger in each instance and was left wondering what would be the very best, most exciting, most life changing news someone could share. What topped cash prizes and the gift of life?

It may be cliche, but after much serious thought and deliberation, I clearly and unquestionably felt that sharing Christian, Mormon beliefs and the message of the gospel of Jesus Christ trumped any good news---past, present, or future. No other news has the power to affect anyone and everyone in any stage of life, from any background, in this life or the next, more profoundly and encompassing with peace, direction, comfort, purpose, and joy.

Jesus Christ, the only begotten son of God, lived for us, suffered our sins and all of pains of any kind. He suffered for us and yet suffers with us. He has more invested in us than what we can even begin to comprehend. He paid for us with his blood and basically everything he could give- a life of perfection, love, and he gave us himself. That he would put His happiness above our own and in return He asks us to follow him, follow Him back to our God, our Heavenly Father.

And yes, we believe in God. A kind and a just God. A God who is also our Heavenly Father or the father of our Spirits. We didn't begin beginning at birth, we lived before we were born, we live here, and we continue to live after death.

And yes, we believe in prophets--- Jesus and God need men to preach their word and guide us back to them. I am grateful for Adam, Noah, Moses and other biblical prophets. And we believe God and Jesus love and care about us folk as much as those as ancient times. So, we continue to have prophets now to help us with our modern-day arks and guidance out of bondage. We have challenges and trials different from the past and still need a loving, guiding God and men to speak His word and lead us.

And yes, we have a Book of Mormon. It's great. While God was speaking to the Middle East, He was also speaking to people in other lands because He loves us all. And the Book of Mormon is just a record, an inspired record, of His dealings with those living in the ancient Americas.

And yes, there are parts of Mormonism that may seem different from other branches of Christianity. But all that God has preached in the past He has restored today....including health codes, temples, and commandments.

So, with all of that said, I wish I could tell Mike, this Mormon thing is either the best news he could possibly have or it's hogwash. It may be pleasant hogwash, but hogwash all the same. If it's the first, going to church every Sunday is a small sacrifice. If the latter, church is essentially a waste of time.

It all boils down to truth. I can share truth. I wish I could have shared more with Mike. However, I think God (the source of all truth) is the best at confirming and discerning truth in our hearts. God has confirmed truth in my heart, and I wish I could have lovingly suggested Mike pray to God to know if Mormonism was worth going to church over.

So that's my confession. A happy one. A slightly wordy one. One from a Mormon girl that now has a new bed and a new respect for a man named Mike. God bless.

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