Ray posted something profound over at Mormon Matters. The post is a little wordy, I think (yea, like I’m one to talk…), but the message rang true. Here are my favorite parts:
Those who leave the Church simply have not married (and perhaps cannot marry) their own spirituality to the institution’s religiosity in a way that produces empowering righteousness, while those who stay often have done so – or are still in pursuit of that goal. I believe too many members rely on the Church to provide their spirituality, and when they realize that the Church is incapable of doing what they need to do themselves, they leave – to find outside of the Church what they failed to find inside it….
Many people take a much more active role in their own spirituality once they leave the Church (especially those who leave with the express purpose of seeking spirituality), and, not surprisingly, they then become more spiritual than they had been as members. Many are constricted by the particular religiosity of Mormonism and must leave in order to pursue a combination of spirituality and religiosity that can bring them a measure of righteousness… Once they become spiritually independent of their religiosity, they are able to return to their former religiosity as new beings and find righteousness in a new manifestation of their former faith.
A while back I posted a bit about my own struggles within the LDS church. Turns out, I’m a text book case study for exactly what Ray is talking about. I was unable to find the Lord within the LDS church. I had allowed God to become entirely eclipsed by religiosity. Although my feet never strayed from the Church, my heart wandered far. It wasn’t until I declared spiritual independence from the LDS church that I finally found God.
But the magnificent part of it all is how the Lord has allowed me to return to the religiosity of the LDS church that has provided the foundation for my personal theology – my “new manifestation of [my] former faith.”