If you stay LDS, you can get about five free meals a year. One at the Trunk-or-Treat at Halloween, one at the ward Christmas party, and then a few others at various break-the-fasts and camp-outs and such. If you play your cards right, you can get away with not bringing anything to the ward potlucks, but you can still consume a lot of free food. If you stay late to help clean up, there might be some leftovers you can bring home.
From my experience, a lot of the food at these church get-togethers is really good. Some of the best chili I’ve ever had in my life was at a chili cook-off my ward did last year. Ward potlucks are also a good time for exchanging recipes. If you find a dish you really enjoy, you can ask around, find out who made it, and then ask nicely for the recipe. You know the members of the Church. They’re really nice, and they’ll most likely give you their recipes, as long as they’re not secret family recipes.
Of course, if you’re like me, you won’t feel right mooching off of everybody else bringing food. You’ll want to sign up and bring something. But if you’re not much of a cook, or don’t feel like putting in much effort, you can volunteer to bring a big jug of lemonade or simply a few bags of chips.
But don’t feel obligated to bring anything. Don’t hesitate to just show up and be a free-loader. Remember, you don’t have a testimony, at least not an orthodox one, anyway. Your ward members should be happy you showed up at all!
Joseph Smith once said, “If you can’t accept our religion, at lease accept our hospitality.” So, go ahead and accept the hospitality of the Mormons, even if you don’t accept their doctrine! Nobody’s checking temple recommends at the line for the mashed potatoes, ham and gravy.
(Funny story. I could have sworn that I heard that Joseph Smith said that quote I just mentioned sometime. I thought I heard it in Church. But I just did an Internet search for it and couldn’t find it. Maybe I misheard the quote. Or maybe I didn’t search well enough. But it’s such a good quote. Let’s just say he said it, OK?)
Some of the reasons to stay LDS on this blog are trivial. I know. I realize that when someone is weighing their options, and trying to decide if they should leave the Church or try to make things work, free food at the church potlucks is virtually a non-factor. When you’re going through the dark night of the soul, reasons like “Free Food at the Church Potlucks” seem like the stupidest of reasons to keep acting like a good Mormon.
But after a while, these trivial reasons start to add up. After a while, little things like good free meals at church gatherings and friendly people in church hallways who shake your hand motivate me into staying LDS.
Oh, and another thing. I’ve been told a few times that my writing style sometimes makes it seem like I’m being sarcastic. If you only read the first paragraph to today’s blog post, you might assume that this entire blog is an ironic joke. Well, I’m not being sarcastic. I’m being serious. Occasionally I’ll use humor and light-heartedness, but, overall, this is a serious blog that discusses serious matters.
The serious thesis statement of this blog is that the vast majority of people who lose their traditional testimonies of the Restoration should stay LDS.
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