For those of you who don't know - I'm what is popularly known as a 'Mormon.'
I belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.
The other day I was out with some friends who have different beliefs in life than I do and we started having a small discussion about religion. It was pretty interesting to hear what they had to say. We all definitely agreed on the fact that throwing your religion is someone's face is not helping you convert them to it. It's really doing just the opposite. But by just living a good life and doing what you believe - that's the best thing.
I then thought about past friends and discussions on religion. And I've definitely realized that it's easier to follow my beliefs and the follow what I believe is right/wrong when I'm around those who believe differently than me. They know my reasons and they respect them and that's the end of it.
It's the friends that also "believe" the same things as me, but act and do differently than what they've been taught and/or what they believe is the right thing. As an example I can say, "No thanks. I don't drink. It's against my religion." But then having those "jack-mormons" there, they just laugh and don't care. It's their religion too and they are drinking anyway. So then it's easier to succumb to things because they believe it, but they are doing against it.
Having friends of other faiths makes me feel as though I need to be an example. I need to actually act and live what I believe is right so that I can show them what I believe. I can't claim to be a 'Mormon' and then do things contradictory to the beliefs because that shows a terrible example. It wouldn't be living my religion at all - so how can I possibly claim that religion if I'm not living any of it's teachings?
So - here's to everyone I know and meet that either are or are not of the LDS (Latter-Day Saint)faith: I am a member of the 'Mormon' church and I'm going to try to show that through my actions. I would hate to have anyone meet me and then be completely surprised that I'm 'Mormon.' I am not perfect and I have a lot of things to change, but I am working on it and will try to be better.