Wednesday, December 24, 2008

The Spirit of Christ (mas)

Leaving a friend's house yesterday we had been talking about crazy Utah Mormon culture. Yes, it is a bit backwards and weird, and if your not LDS, it can be overwhelming. As a Mormon, not from Utah, I feel I am lucky. I have been able to clearly distinguish my true, religious and spiritual beliefs from what appears to be a mainstream culture full of social expectations, here in Utah. It is nice to have that distinction, and I believe it helps me retain my individuality, and helps me grasp what is truly sacred and special to me about being LDS.
Feeling a little saddened by the conversation, I kept thinking, "Is it really all that bad here? Are people really all that crazy? Are Utah Mormons really a threat to society and individuality?"
I stopped at the local grocery market to buy our Christmas dinner. It was packed. Hordes of people doing their holiday food shopping, and last minute details. As I was rounding the corner by the produce I noticed a large group of people running around the store. There was a lot of commotion and I saw men and women with long lists, arms filled with cool whip, applesauce, and green beans! They were yelling at each other to grab "5 more boxes of oranges! Six more bags of potatoes! We need another ham!"
At first I was annoyed at their loudness, then I heard someone ask, "What's all this for?" And one of the men with the lists answered back, "We're feeding 20 needy families tonight. We're dropping boxes full of food at houses and at the shelter." And last he added, "It's a Ward effort."
Almost instantly my eyes filled with tears. I quickly turned a corner so no one could see. I cried my little heart out. I felt the Spirit of Christ so powerfully, and all I could do was stand there and think that living in a town full of Christians isn't such a bad thing. I was grateful for this experience. It touched me deeply and made me want to be a little less judgmental, a little less confused, a little more like Christ.

I Just wanted to wish a Merry Christmas to all my wonderful friends and family. I hope each person gets to experience the Spirit of Christmas and what it means to them.


Hilary-Dilary-Dock said...

Oh Sally! Amen amen amen amen!! I think it is a hard thing to learn to separate "true religion" from the ridiculous Utah Mormon culture. We feel SO LUCKY to live in downtown Salt Lake where pretty much everyone in our ward has mental and/or health issues and is poverty stricken. I feel like these are the people Christ spent his time with. . . healing the sick, uplifting the poor, comforting the weary. I have learned so much about true service here, and I always see my ward members who have almost nothing giving what little they have away to other ward members and neighbors. Oh yes! The spirit of Christ(mas) is alive and well in Utah. I LOVE this post of yours!

Matthew Raish said...

Ah, Sally, you're the best. I love you. This is from Trisha

The Estrogen Files said...

Oh sweets! It is so good to hear you finding the answers when you most need them. It's so good to hear from you!!

sara (Idaho falls)