The Parable of the Good Mormon


Part Two (Conclusion)

I’m not a Mormon, nor am I a fan of Mormon teachings (although I know and love quite a few Mormons). But that’s not what this post is about. Read on…

To read Part One, click here.

The crowd sat blinking, waiting for a further explanation of my dubious parable. “As finite beings,” I said, “we strain to see Truth in a darkened mirror. Like ants on the sidewalk, we can never fully understand the cosmos around us. And it doesn’t help when false prophets arise and blow smoke at the mirror. But despite that, and because of the life and teachings of Jesus, we are able to grasp that there is a God who loves us. And we are able to love him back.

“There are Mormons,” I went on, “who’ve been taught some outlandish things, but who don’t give a fig about becoming a god or having their own planet; they simply want to please their Creator. Conversely, there are learned Bible seminary grads, who don’t give a fig about pleasing God or rescuing wounded travelers on the way to Jericho. Or Salt Lake City. Or wherever it is they think is so important to get to.

“How many of you have been guilty of hating Mormons?” I asked. One by one, hands began creeping up. “And how many of you have assumed you were satisfying God simply by believing the right things, forgetting it’s not what you know, but Who you know? Hundreds of hands went up. Fearful but compelled, I asked them to come forward so that we might pray together for God to revive in us the compassion he has for all of his children—Mormons, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Muslims, Hindus, atheists. Perhaps eighty percent of the people in the auditorium came forward.

After a heartfelt time of prayer, I asked if any of the people still in their seats were Mormons. Slowly, timidly, most of the hands were raised. Anxious to reach all the way through the hornet’s nest, I challenged those up front to engage with those in the seats. Some slipped away, but most stayed.

I’ve rarely seen more people crying at one time. Non-Mormons asking Mormons to forgive them, and more than a few Mormons asking the same. People of differing and undefined stripes praying together. Hearts being changed.

I don’t know what happened after that night. But do I know this: It didn’t begin with Allen and me, and it didn’t end with us. Truth is important, yes. It impacts our thoughts and actions, and we should always strive to know and teach what’s true. But in the end,

“The only thing that matters is faith expressing itself through love.” ~Galatians 5:6

About mitchteemley

Writer, Filmmaker, Humorist, Thinker-about-stuffer
This entry was posted in For Pastors and Teachers, Memoir, Quips and Quotes, Religion/Faith, Story Power and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

32 Responses to The Parable of the Good Mormon

  1. AMEN! We will never know how powerful our prayers can be if we lose the hate! I have daily prayed for our President (whoever) since 2011. One night I was praying and had the distinct feeling God was telling me my prayers were being hindered by the hatred of Christians toward the man who held office at the time. Instead of blasting our leaders, why don’t we PRAY for them, as Scripture clearly tells us to?

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Pingback: The Parable of the Good Mormon | Mitch Teemley

  3. revruss1220 says:

    Wow! What a powerful example of allowing yourself to be used by God to heal hearts and minds. Thank you being the right person at the right moment. I have no doubt the effects of your teaching rippled far from that auditorium and that evening.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. E says:

    Wow. And well done. All He asks us to do is love people.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. sothisisbliss says:

    I think this is a good example of how the Lord speaks to each of his people to minister to all of his people. Each of us is an instrument in his hand. Being Mormon, and having only recently relocated t the very Ogden, UT where your experience took place, I have often been confused and surprised at the level of tension and conflict between members, inactive mebers, and nonmembers of my religion. Your message was healing for many there that night, I’m sure.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. joyroses13 says:

    ❤ Couldn't be a more beautiful ending!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. What a beautiful verse to end a beautiful story ❤️ Love is always the answer.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Joan says:

    Thank you, Mitch for this inspiring application of the Parable of the Good Samaritan in daily life. It couldn’t have been more timely.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Roos Ruse says:

    Love wins again! Shocking as it is, some of the members in my Friday night Bible Study group (all mature, intelligent, literate, sincere Christians) get caught up in trash talking Mormons. I can hardly wait to share these two posts, Mitch. Film at 11…

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Love that God led you so clearly and that He so incredibly blessed your obedience!! ☺️Very inspiring, Mitch!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. While reading this an atomic bomb of memories appeared in my mind. All acts of judgment require a call to action. Without the knowledge of God’s Love, you may remain lost. You “my friend” are not lost. Thank you for sharing your experiences.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Ann Coleman says:

    That took courage, but look at the wonderful results. If only all of us could realize that God wants us to love everyone, especially those we consider different and wrong. If only more of us could pray together……

    Liked by 1 person

  13. gurpreetik says:

    Thanks for reading my blog, please follow for future posts! 👍🏽

    Liked by 1 person

  14. adammuly says:

    Wow! What a great way to apply that great parable to modern day Christianity! I loved it!

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Tina says:

    ❤ loved this message. Thanks so much for sharing! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I wonder how many Christians are caught up in WHAT they know about scripture, doctrine and rules and how many are showing an interest in the people they meet everyday. A little kindness goes a long way. Thanks for the down to earth reminder of our purpose for living.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. gpavants says:

    Hi Mitch,

    Great opportunity. I always think in times like this not to water down and homogenize faith. However, when you present Jesus and grace, you remove people from the religious trappings. You get to people and their need for God.

    Keep planting and watering, brother. The Lord bless your words and movies.


    Liked by 1 person

  18. Mitch,

    I consider myself a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, and I just wanted to say how much I appreciate this post. I love your take on this parable. I see so much of what you are talking about within ‘mormon culture’ and am doing my very best to get rid of that culture in my life and the lives of those I love and focus on Christ, who is the only way to God.

    Thanks so much for sharing. I’m glad I stumbled across this today.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. roryjmele says:

    Mitch, I really returned to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints through baptism after years of wandering and finally excommunication. I used to be critical of mainstream Christianity for the hate that was thrown at me while serving a mission by those who called themselves Christians…. but during the time that i was removed from the Church, living in Kansas, i became friends with a Christian family that was good to me and my family. I found myself celebrating their religious practices and family milestones. I found healing in our connection to them. Your post is wonderful. Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

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