Monday, November 18, 2013

Treasure, that is what you are

I'm a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, also known as the Mormons. When possible on Sundays, I discuss some things related to my faith and what I believe. With respect to your own beliefs, I hope this gives you a chance to get to know me and my religion a little better. For previous installments, click here.

Sometimes Mormons are referred to as a "peculiar people." You can find many references to the Lord's peculiar people throughout the scriptures. Today, that word usually means "strange or odd." It's somewhat easy why we might be seen as such. We don't drink, take God's name in vain, have sex outside of marriage. We attend church every week, pay tithing, and attend the temple. Just to name a few things that tend to set us apart.

Elder Rodney Turner put it this way in 1972:
 In referring to themselves as a peculiar people, the Latter-day Saints tend to do so with certain theological concepts and religious customs in mind. Such things as the belief in an anthropomorphic deity, the preexistence, work for the dead, temple marriage, and the Word of Wisdom are cited as proof that we are a peculiar people.
That's how I understood the phrase until tonight as I started doing a little research for this post. In a quick poll of the other members of my household, I wasn't the only one. We've been taught that in various church classes for years. But, it turns out, I'm completely wrong, thanks to a misinterpretation of the word using the modern definition.

Elder Russell M. Nelson explains it much better than I could.

So, we're not weird at all. We're treasured.

I like that a lot.

And we're actually pretty normal people. I hope that my non-LDS friends have noticed that about me. A tool that church has come out with in recent years is, where you can find people like yourself and learn about their testimonies of the gospel. You can find stories about people who have tattoos or used to be Hindu or who were raised in the church like I was.

If you're think we're odd, that's okay. I can take it. But, as always, if you have any questions about anything related to the Church, I'm more than happy to answer them!

1 comment:

Giggles said...

I think there are several things that we misunderstand because we are applying a modern definition to a word. Peculiar is definitely one of them. The meanings of words morph over time and it's helpful to know how it was used when the phrase first came into being.

I definitely have my odd, weird moments. But it's not necessarily because I am LDS. :)