Sunday, July 24, 2011
Sunday Confessional - I don't like reading...
Does this make me a horrible person? I was sitting in Church two weeks ago and a woman got up and announced, "I don't like reading the scriptures," and I thought "Eureka, I'm with you!" It was a lightening moment where I found the freedom to say what I thought was completely taboo. I just don't enjoy reading them. I've been pondering this most of my life. At 12, I remember hearing a mom bare testimony about how touching it was to find her daughter, Molly John, reading the scriptures late into the night in the bathroom because that was the only place in the house she could find some alone time. I envied Molly because she got joy from them. Meanwhile I'd be plodding through them for the previous four years and found the whole experience to be dull and sometimes just torturous. It isn't that I disliked, or currently dislike reading about spiritual matters or thinking about God. I read the whole Ensign the day it comes in the mail. I enjoy listening to and rereading conference talks. I've read books written by modern prophets with stories of their lives or doctrine and I enjoyed them. I enjoy historical books that discuss religion. My favorite book, the one I've read probably twenty times since my first reading is actually In the Eye of the Storm. I like teaching my kids scripture stories, watching scripture movies, and discussing God, Faith, and religion. So the Church, God, the Spirit, reading about them, talking about them, teaching about them, is not what I don't enjoy. I just don't enjoy the way the scriptures are written. A few weeks ago when we were reading in family scripture study my son said, "Why do they have to keep saying, And it came to pass." And I just had to laugh, because the truth is I find it annoying as well.
I definitely think that scripture reading is important. The Church I belong to heavily encourages it's members to read daily as a commandment from God, and it is something that is taught in most other major world Religions. I figure if God sees the need to tell so many of his people, through so many different ways that reading his words is important, then it probably is. And so I continue on, making and remaking goals to make my scripture study daily, to make it more meaningful, to increase the time, or the thought I put into it. I read to my children, because I hope that they'll be able to gain a love for it that just never has found it's way into my heart. I pray for a love of reading scriptures because the truth is it would be a whole lot easier to want to do it, if I actually enjoyed the process. I try to focus on the stories and the teaching, more than the words themselves, because that is the part I actually like. And then I just preserver on and hope that if God never sees fit to bless me with a joy of reading at least he will forgive me for my lack of joy.