This idea of core beliefs that I have been running with doesn’t necessarily have to replace a religion or faith. I still am LDS (and we ARE Christians!) and consider myself part of the Mormon tradition. But in years past being Mormon was such a part of my identity that it was my ONLY identity. Faith crisis, identity crisis, quarter-life crisis, move, friends getting married (but not me), boy problems, sad epiphanies, embarrassment, emotional struggling, collapse of my social circle AND of my worldview, and seemingly resolved old insecurities resurfacing and drowning any and all confidence I had ever so hard worked to gain. No wonder life was pretty bad. “Bad” is an understatement but I prefer not to swear, at least not today.
But seriously even though it sounds a little hokey, identifying these core beliefs (humor, beauty, expression, creativity, understanding, and Christ) and then explicating and claiming these had done amazing things. I am no longer just a Mormon. I am human first and Mormon second. In the past I was so Mormon I wasn’t even human. When it came to missionary work, particularly in high school, I felt the need to share my faith with non-Mormons because “the church is true.” Now I desire to share my faith because “the gospel is good.” Both are legitimate, but I am happier with the 2nd reason.