Posts 4 & 5 in this series that contained JL’s emails really hit a nerve with some people. I got this response from an Aussie friend we will call “RA”
Loved the latest post with JL’s email.
It could have EASILY been my own…right down to the jots and tittles!”
Another response came from a scientist living back east that I met through this blog back in 2008:
“I like this guy….he is a kindred spirit.
When I read his e-mails, it takes me back a few years….I can superimpose his thoughts/feelings right on top of what mine were back then.
And that’s how the truth should be — constant, the same yesterday, today, and forever.
Yet the truth can set you free as well as destroy you. It’s not what you’re given in life that matters, but what you do with what you are given.
I remember not sleeping for 72 hours straight just to get through all your posts, then sending you bold questions because I wanted bold answers.
I hope to be sharing some past correspondence that I have had with NEPT through the years, if I can find the emails. Sadly, I have had two computer melt downs during the last several years and lost much of my correspondence.
“I Would Like to Connect with JL”
I thought it was interesting that three different people specifically contacted me to get contact information for JL. With two of them, it seemed to be motivated by JL’s amazingly compassionate response to his dear wife who believes differently than him. Apparently they are experiencing a similar challenge with their spouse or children. They would love to connect with someone having that same experience.
Heres are a few snippets from these three guys:
“RT” put in these comments in the about section of my blog:
“I like this JL fella that you have written about recently.
If he is in Utah I would like to reach out to him, as he sounds like a like-minded truth seeker.
Maybe we could do lunch. With his permission, can you put me in touch with him?
I also heard from a reader for the first time who told me about his journey of awakening. Here are a few snippets from a rather long email that he sent-
“My name is “SN and I’m a recovering “mormonoholic”. I’ve been sober going on three years and it feels good. Although sometimes I have felt all alone, especially in the beginning of my awakening. However, about a year ago I shared a few things with my younger brother who is also a fellow “drunkard” from the tribe of Ephraim trying to get dry. Haha, that’s funny Isaiah, we don’t even drink :) and he has been a nice support.
I stumbled upon your blog back in late 2011 and have been a “religious” reader ever since. ..
..Your post Sunday February 15 which I read during gospel doctrine :) did more than just reveal an email. I related so well with JL and thought, “wouldn’t that be cool if I could connect with other recovering “mormonoholics” and provide support for one another…
..Enough rambling. My wife has always been my best friend of 20 years. But the last three years have been hard on our marriage. There have been other factors including taking care of sick parents but I believe at the heart of it is our views on the gospel and the LDS Church have differed.
It’s difficult to confide in your closest confidant only to be met with skepticism and worry that you’ve lost it. (JL, I empathize with you and your wife). You want so bad for them to see it, but they refuse to look. I know I have become too cynical toward LDS corporate, but it’s hard not to once you realize you’ve been deceived all those years.
I believe my own cynicism caused my wife to put up walls. I know the Lord has a timetable for the “awakening” of each of his children and I’m learning patience. The good news is, after 3 years my wife is “softening” to some if these “heretic” views :))).
“Watcher”, your blog has been a tremendous help to me in my awakening. Thank you…
..Please pass my information on to JL and let him know I would love to connect with him should he choose to. I know I could use somebody to lean on once in a while and maybe he feels the same?
Lastly, here is an email I got from a guy we will call “ME”. He first contacted me last summer while I was camping in Nauvoo with my son. He has done some extensive research on the law of consecration that I have previously shared on this blog. Here is what he had to say:
Anyway, I’ll get to the main point here. I am trying to develop more patience, especially when it comes to my wife.
I have to let the Lord work with her when she is ready.
But where this difficult task has been compounded that much more, is in regards to our children. And JL made brief reference to this in his email, but he didn’t expound on it.
I am contacting you because I was wondering if you would be willing to contact JL through email and ask him if I could correspond with him personally, either through email, or even on the phone. If he is willing to do so, I give you permission to give him my email.
Watcher, I do have concern for my wife, and I want dearly for her eyes to be opened. But like JL mentioned about his wife, I know that my wife is one of the kindest and most wonderful Christ-like people out there. So I have all faith that some day she will truly see. BUT, it is my kids that I am currently most concerned about. I know how hard it can be for someone to realize these sacred truths once they have been sucked into the vortex of “Follow the Prophet” and “I Love to See the Temple”. For the majority of my life, I also lived with blinders on, so I know.
Like you mentioned in your last post, it is almost easier to talk to someone who has lost their faith completely, or nearly completely, then to reason with a mainstream true believing mormon. In fact, of those few that are close to me that I have shared these truths with, they have been the most warmly received by one who used to be a TBM that now claims to be an atheist. Go figure.
Anyway, I would love to talk with JL and ask him further questions about how he, and his wife, are dealing with raising their children when their ideas regarding these most important things vary greatly.
Needless to say, it has become a great concern for my wife and myself.
I’m sure you realize how lucky you are that Mrs. Watcher’s eyes were opened at the same time yours were. You truly are blessed in this way! I don’t know exactly why the Lord works with individuals at different times, to help them see. I’m sure there are many different reasons. But I think that for a couple to “wake up” at the same time, partially irrespective of each other, must be something of a miracle…
Anyway, sorry for the length of this email.
As always, God Bless you for your efforts to help others also “wake up”.”
The is the role of the High Priest in Israel and also the role of the family patriarch and matriarch… providing protection for those you love during their time of probation. In some cases the best protection is to teach the truth if it is their time, in other cases, simply loving them and supporting them is the best way to protect them.
I think we don’t even get what the spiritual dynamics are that are involved in the prayers and patience that a person offers up in behalf of their spouse, child, parent, friend, etc.
Perhaps true Charity is in sometimes not sharing the fulness of the Gospel until the appointed time.
As I have been pondering the ramifications of the intercessory atonement statute and how some of the great prophets like Moses and Samuel and Joseph Smith have interceded on behalf of their people, it has led me to the an interesting study regarding the role of the high priest, and how the high priest was required to go into the holy of holies each year and offer up an atonement offering in behalf of his congregation.
Not only is that typological of the great atonement of Christ, and the temporal intercessory intercessions of people like Moses and Joseph, it is probably typological of what the gospel of Jesus Christ requires of each of us with regard to our fellow man.
What an amazing concept it is for one person to intercede in behalf of another person or persons, as the best form of protection is provided for them.
The concept of intercession is remarkable and it shows up in many different forms.
The following admonition of Joseph Smith which he made during his dark days in Nauvoo when people were beginning to accuse him of being a false prophet is somewhat intriguing because he makes a veiled intercessionary statement about taking those who do not accuse him of sin into heaven as his “backload”:
“I charged the Saints not to follow the example of the adversary in accusing the brethren, and said, “If you do not accuse each other, God will not accuse you. If you have no accuser you will enter heaven, and if you will follow the revelations and instructions which God gives you through me, I will take you into heaven as my back load. If you will not accuse me, I will not accuse you. If you will throw a cloak of charity over my sins, I will over yours—for charity covereth a multitude of sins. (Joseph Smith, History of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 7 vols. 4:445)
Lately I have been expanding my atonement statute thesis ( atonement statute final 6 UPDATED ) to include additional supporting documentation from the other standard works regarding the role of Joseph Smith. Originally it only had prophesies from the Old Testament in it because I wanted to prove that the prophetic profile of Joseph Smith can easily be documented in the Bible without the aid of the Book of Mormon or the D&C, however, I have now added a huge amount of additional supporting information, primarily from the D&C.
During this research I was reminded about the intercession protection that the “servant” provides to apostate latter day Israel in the following passage contained in the allegory in Jacob 5
“And it came to pass that the Lord of the vineyard said unto the servant: Let us go to and hew down the trees of the vineyard and cast them into the fire, that they shall not cumber the ground of my vineyard, for I have done all. What could I have done more for my vineyard?
But, behold, the servant said unto the Lord of the vineyard: Spare it a little longer.
And the Lord said: Yea, I will spare it a little longer, for it grieveth me that I should lose the trees of my vineyard.
Wherefore, let us take of the branches of these which I have planted in the nethermost parts of my vineyard, and let us graft them into the tree from whence they came; and let us pluck from the tree those branches whose fruit is most bitter, and graft in the natural branches of the tree in the stead thereof.
And this will I do that the tree may not perish, that, perhaps, I may preserve unto myself the roots thereof for mine own purpose.
And, behold, the roots of the natural branches of the tree which I planted whithersoever I would are yet alive; wherefore, that I may preserve them also for mine own purpose, I will take of the branches of this tree, and I will graft them in unto them.
Yea, I will graft in unto them the branches of their mother tree, that I may preserve the roots also unto mine own self, that when they shall be sufficiently strong perhaps they may bring forth good fruit unto me, and I may yet have glory in the fruit of my vineyard.”