Statue of Limitations

When I was a freshman at BYU, and straight out of being raised “in the mission field” of vast California, I was leaving a religion class and chanced upon this scene:

There was a boy, in the JSB, off a corridor in a small little courtyard area that contained a statue of Joseph Smith. From a way off, I could see this boy looking intently at the statue and just as I passed, he stepped up and hugged it.

My first thought:

“Oh my gosh, get me out of crazy town!”

And then a few days later, this:

“I wonder what would compel a person to hug a statue of Joseph Smith?”

True, you would have to be the statue-hugging type. But aside from that, you would have to be someone with a deep love and gratitude for Joseph Smith—a love and gratitude that I somehow lacked.

As I’ve read the Book of Mormon, I’ve never doubted its truthfulness. But the Joseph Smith history was always such a fantastical aspect of it that I’ve mostly just ignored it or asked people to please not tell me any “interesting” tidbits they found in their own study of his life—lest I grow squeamish.

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