David Butler: Getting to Know Jesus
The scriptures speak of people falling down at the feet of Jesus. Who might lead you to fall down if you met them? Do you know who Jesus is and what He has done for you enough that if you were to meet Him you would fall down at His feet? On this week’s episode, we talk about who Jesus is and why He is worthy of our adoration and praise.
David Butler's "Redeemer" can be found here.
Judah Smith's podcast
Elder John R. Lasater's "Shepherds of Israel"ChurchofJesusChrist.org
—Elder Dale G. Renlund, "Our Good Shepherd"ChurchofJesusChrist.org
2020 "Don't Miss This" Study Journal Don't Miss This Journal with David Butler and Emily Belle Freeman
2:18- Falling Down
11:33- Forming a Personal Relationship with Christ
21:23- Greatest Challenges that Face Youth...and All of Us
30:38- Names of Christ
40:25- What Does It Mean To You To Be "All In" the Gospel of Jesus Christ?
0:00 Morgan Jones: Hello everyone, welcome to a new year and a very special week of "All In" episodes featuring "Don't Miss This" hosts David Butler and Emily Belle Freeman. There will be a special bonus episode of "All In," an interview with Emily and David together in between episodes with each of them individually. If you want to make sure you get notified when this episode is released, be sure to subscribe. Also, we wanted to make you aware of the new LDS living podcast "Sunday on Monday," which is available exclusively on Deseret Bookshelf Plus, but you can find the first segment of every episode by visiting LDSLiving.com/sundayonmonday.
There is an old Christian hymn that sings "What a Friend We Have in Jesus." But is Jesus our friend? Do we know Him? This episode is being released on New Year's Day and I just keep thinking how cool would it be if we set a goal, a new year's resolution, this year to come to know our Savior in a way we haven't before. Will you join me in that? Hopefully this episode will be a good start.
David Butler's greatest love his people. He has adopted a life motto "Stuff no mattah, people mattah." His favorite people are his wife Jenny and their six darling children. Some of his other loves include good food, spontaneous adventures, Christmas morning and the sea. David co-hosts the popular YouTube scripture study channel, "Don't Miss This" with Emily Belle Freeman and is the author of many religious books, most recently working on a series about the Godhead, which so far includes the books "Almighty" and "Redeemer."
This is "All In," an LDS Living podcast where we ask the question, "What does it really mean to be all in the Gospel of Jesus Christ?"
I'm Morgan Jones and I am so grateful to have my buddy David Butler here with me today. David, welcome.
David Butler: Welcome! Welcome to your own podcast.
MJ: Thank you, David.
DB: You're welcome.
MJ: Pleasure to be here with you.
MJ: So the first question that I have to ask you, I just finished reading "Redeemer," and it was great. I quite enjoyed it. Mostly because I read it in your voice. I hear your voice in my mind throughout the whole book is which is really great. I did listen to half of it on the audiobook which may be why, but even before that I did. But the very beginning of the book you talk about how some people get really excited to meet different people, like celebrities, if you will, but then you give this example of how you once saw Mike Tyson.
DB: In the Las Vegas airport.
MJ: And you just said "What's up, Mike?"
MJ: And he said, What?
DB: Hey, buddy.
MJ: You're like, I just am cool in those types of situations. But then you say that there as you think about it, that there is actually a list of people that your palms would get sweaty if you met them. Now, the biggest question in my mind is who was on that list of people?
DB: Okay, listen, I think I went back and forth and change that so many times because originally I wrote it and I was like, I have nobody. There's nobody that like, I would go...
MJ: Knees weak, palms are sweaty.
DB: Yeah, yeah. Over meeting. And then I was like, No, for sure there is. But then as I've thought about it since then, so that's what's in there. Now, I was like, I think what I would be is nervous that the person wouldn't like me, you know, like, yeah, if I like someone so much, I want them to like me back right now...because I don't think I would go fangirl over people. I'm trying to think you know, like who I okay, so I have this...I call him my preacher, Judah Smith. He preaches this church in Washington and has a podcast that I love so much if I met him, like, I would be afraid of saying something stupid, you know, cuz I like, admire him so much. And I want us to be friends and in my mind, we are friends, even though we've never met? Like, I almost feel like I should send them a Christmas card or something. Because I feel like we're good friends. Yeah, but we're not. We're not, he doesn't know me. So yeah. And then Jimmy Fallon. I want his job. So I think I'd be nervous about that if I met him.
MJ: You'd be great at that job.
DB: That's my like, dream job. I want to be Jimmy Fallon or have his job.
MJ: Those listening. If you have a hookup David Butler, he has a dream of being on the late night show.
DB: It is my dream.
MJ: The Tonight Show, that's the one. Okay, so but then I love the point that you make in the book before we digress too far, because I can give you a whole list of people that would make me nervous.
DB: Boys II Men isn't it, Morgan?
MJ: No...they were before my time, David.
MJ: No, but I love that you point out that Jesus Christ, like what would it be like to meet Jesus? And to have that moment with him? Like, what would we say? What would we do? And you then tie it into the story of the tree of life. And how these people have this experience with, you know, partaking of the fruit of the tree, and that there's a difference between the people that partake of the fruit and remain and then the people who still fall away. And the distinction that you point out is that the group that stayed falls down and worships after they partake of the fruit. Now, my question...
DB: Yeah, cuz usually the focus in that story is on the way that they held on to the rod, you know, which I've since writing it, I've actually thought even more about that and thought there really might be something there. Because in that vision, I'm sorry. Are you gonna remember your question? Do you have it written down because I'm going to derail you.
DB: I think everything is him. I think he calls himself the way and he calls himself the word. And he calls himself the waters of life. And he's the tree like, he's all around all of that. I think he is the entire vision, you know, of the tree of life. And so, so there might be something about like, the way they held on to the rod. But what I wrote about was, the difference, you know, when they both get there, and then one leaves and one stays, but then I noticed it says that one of them falls down at the tree. And I'm such a visual person that I like, watch scripture when I read it. You know what I mean? Yeah, I see it and I think "Wait, why are those people doing that? That's weird. It's a tree? What are you doing?" Right? You know, and if you want fruit, you should reach up, you should get a ladder, you shouldn't fall, you know, and they fall. And then you're like, Oh, wait, that is and then if you notice, like 11 through 14, 1 Nephi 11 through 14 is pictures of Jesus' ministry, like it's the whole new testament that we just read. Like, that's what Nephi gets to watch is the New Testament. And the leper who falls and the shepherds who fall at his feet and the woman on the roadside who falls and I'm like, Oh my gosh, that is what this is. It's people falling at the feet of Jesus, you know? Yeah.
MJ: Chapter 11 in 1 Nephi is one of my favorite chapters in all of the Book of Mormon. And I remember one time I was reading it, and it was when I was a missionary, and we were sharing it with this lady, and we're recording this before Christmas. It was at Christmas time and the lady's name was Natividad.
MJ: Yes, true story. And we're reading that chapter with her. And I just remember reading where, you know, the angel is saying, look, and in Spanish it said "Mira," and then Nephi describes what he's seeing. And I just remember it coming alive in my head. And I actually am not as much that way in terms of like, visualizing things. But in that moment, it really did come alive. And it's amazing how much that can change the Book of Mormon for us. And so, with this, David, this discovery about the falling down and worshipping Christ, how do you think we develop that kind of relationship? What leads people to fall down and worship Christ?
DB: I mean, it's such a great question because and really that's the journey of the whole book, and it was the journey that I kind of wanted to take was like, wait, they're not doing that because they're supposed to.
MJ: They don't even know that's a thing.
DB: Yeah, and one of the things that's interesting is to have a relationship with Christ all you need is need and in all of those stories like somebody needed him, you know yeah and I think that's a beautiful part about it but obviously there is something that is there. There is an actual authentic relationship with him with these people like they're not acting in a way that you're supposed to act. There is legitimate need. Again this is at Christmas time so it's on the mind everybody whenever you listen to this, but the Christ Child video...I cannot watch that part of the wise men without like, just getting teary in that video when the Wise Man kneels down.
MJ: The one that kind of looks like the Rock?
DB: Yes. And the offers the gift and like the look on his face is like, that is the look of of somebody who knew him. You know, like I'm not just supposed to offer this gift, like, I know who you are and, and that's kind of what I hope for when I meet Jesus again, is a meeting of like...if I were to pick an emotion, it would be gratitude. Because I think that's what would drive me to fall is you know, is just remembering...I can just imagine myself saying like, you never left me, you were there in those hard days and thank you for being there for me and thank you for strengthening me and thank you for whispering what you did when you did and, and, you know, it's got to be that just like this love and adoration and devotion and I just love that it's real, there was like a legit relationship there and I think that is the key that there's a difference between routine and relationship.
MJ: Yeah, you know, the way that you just described that gratitude and adoration, it reminded me of "Mr. Krueger's Christmas," you know, when he's talking and he's like...
DB: That is a sweet part, the movie is so boring to me except for that little scene.
MJ: You obviously don't love Jimmy Stewart as much as I do. That's fine, we can agree to disagree. So I love though that you touched on that relationship and I'm trying right now to find a text in my phone. Yesterday, I texted three people. Two were my younger youngest siblings, and one was our friend Chelsie Hightower to ask if they had ideas for questions that I should ask you. And I thought that this that Chelsie said was such a high compliment to you. And so first I want to just read you what she said. She said, "I think one thing I'd be interested to know is how he came to know the Savior on the personal level that he seems to know Him on. When he talks about it, it feels so real and it's evident that he knows the reality of Him." I don't think that there are many things that people could say to me that would make me happier than that. And so David, first of all, how do you feel like you've come to know the Savior on such a personal level?
DB: Okay, first Chelsie that's the sweetest thing ever, number one. Second, what's up girl? My mom just sent me a picture of this little Nativity that I bought her when I was like in third grade, like we had a little store, like at Christmas time where you could, you know, take money in and buy stuff and, and it's this little pewter Nativity and that is one of my earliest memories of being little and seeing this Nativity that was there and she still has it and every Christmas she sends me a picture of it. She's like, I'm putting out my little Nativity, and I can remember being like drawn to that as a little kid. You know, I wish I could ask my mom how old I actually was, but it's honestly one of my first memories and so there's just always been something in me that has been, you know, drawn to him. And then that's been up and down, you know, throughout life and relationships are like that I guess. More recently, we had a...do you remember when there was like a big kind of Sabbath day training, like reemphasizing the Sabbath Day.
MJ: Yeah, His Day.
DB: Yeah. And there was all the training from the Quorum of the Twelve and those videos and stuff like that. Well, if you remember, it wasn't a Sabbath day training. It was the question that the Quorum of the Twelve took to the Lord was, how do we increase faith in God, the Father and the Son in the world? Like, that was the heart and soul of the whole, whatever you call it, you know, and then the answer to it..one of the answers that came back strongly was give a day, you know, like, let's honor the Sabbath. And as part of that training, President Nelson wasn't president at the time, Elder Nelson, I guess said let's give Sacrament meeting back to the Savior. And I was serving as a new bishop at the time and had the most amazing Ward Council. I always did. And we took it seriously. And we were like, how do we use sacrament meeting in particular, I called the Ward Council, the worship team. I was like, "This is the worship team. Like we gotta like, you know, every other church has to win their members to come. We have this mentality sometimes that you better come to church, or you don't get a temple recommend. But instead, it was like, let's like, how do we create an experience for people as best we can when they come? How do we take that admonition and we asked ourselves, at the end of every sacrament meeting, we want to offer that as a gift to the Lord and say, "This was our gift to you this meeting." Like let's put that kind of heart and soul into it. And I said, "I think it's going to take us two years to get there as a ward, but let's do it. What do we do?" And so for that whole year, we took the second and third hour of church and we took groups from the ward divided the ward up into like groups like 15 people, and everyone kind of got a turn. And for the second and third hour we met in the chapel just right at the Sacrament table. And we talked about Jesus and about the sacrament and where we see Him, you know, throughout Scripture and we just focused to what's the story of the Sacrament...it was the story of Jesus starting in the Garden of Eden, all the way, you know, until the New Testament was where we focused all of our time on and I didn't realize it was happening as we were going through the year, but we did it for about eight months. And we changed what we spoke about in Sacrament meeting and we thought more about it and honestly, it got to the end of that year and I loved him in such a unique way. You know, it was such a special year. So most recently that has had that had such a significant impact on me about the way that I felt about Him. And it just was I was just so focused on it. And we were teaching and talking about Him and thinking about Him and trying to train to give an offering to Him. And really I'm different because of that year. I really am. I think I've always been drawn to Jesus but I really am different because of that time.
MJ: Yeah. I think that's so cool. I think it's so neat. Because it feels like kind of a little thing, like, that's something that we could do in our words and branches. We could try to have higher quality Sacrament meetings and actually think about the Savior and how would we do that? That feels like something doable, but that something like that can be transformative and can change our relationship with Jesus Christ. I love that idea. And I think that I had this thought about Come Follow Me recently. I think that a religion should change us. And if it doesn't like if a religion is not challenging us to be better and do better, and refining our souls and helping us draw closer to Christ than like, what are we doing it for? We're not like you said, we're not just doing it to like check a box, or whatever...it should be something that is thoughtful, and something that we can feel a difference in our lives.
DB: Yeah. Someone taught me this. I think it's right, that the word religion actually comes from a phrase that means a connection to God, that it's not supposed to be about, you know, routine. It's about a relationship. That's the purpose of religion is to connect you to Him, and people's passion for God for Jesus goes up and down throughout their whole lives. I've been thinking about this recently. And I think the key is this is when a person focuses more on principles than they do on the Person, then their passion goes down. But when it is more about the Person of Jesus, instead of the principles about how to live as a disciple, when He Himself becomes the center of your worship and adoration, and not how good of a disciple you are, like, I think that is where the magic is, is in that and that's one of the things that we focused on is as a word Council, when we ask people to speak, we were like, Listen, there is good advice. And there is good news. And in our services, let's preach good news. Like that's gospel, right. We want people to walk away from these meetings with loving, adoring and worshiping Him, not like give good advice in one of the other meetings. Right? Advice is something you should do. We should do this. We should, we should, we should—if the talk sounds like that, it's not worship. That's not good news. You know, it's let's look at Him. Let's like, let's turn our hearts to him, let's look how good he is and how gracious he is. And then I think that leads to a person wanting then to be a disciple, but it's got to be in that order. You know, news is reporting of what has been done. And I said, let's tell what He's done. Let's tell the glad tidings and the good news.
MJ: Don't you just wish that David was your bishop?
DB: Ah no. No they don't. Such a disaster. I had such good people around me otherwise I would have derailed the whole Church.
MJ: I've heard otherwise just FYI.
DB: That's what my stake president said this..this is true. We were at a bishops training meeting. And he was like, "You know how parents have that kid they're worried about that keeps them up at night. He's like, stake presidents have that too with their bishops." And he's like, "Mine is Butler." I was like "What? I was just late to every training. Like I'm sorry."
MJ: David, you have worked and I ask this because this book is geared toward youth these books, "Almighty," "Redeemer," it's fun because I wrote them for anybody. Right? I actually wrote "Almighty" thinking of somebody who was an adult in my mind when I wrote it and same with "Redeemer" like I kind of speak to myself, but at the same time, I want them to be approachable for youth also, but I wanted it to be significant. My sister like, gave it to her, her son and she's said "But I actually like it."
MJ: Well, I know I was gonna say a lady that my mom knows. She said that she texted her the other day and she was like, "I just finished reading David Butler's 'Redeemer.' Have you read that? It's so good." And she's like an older woman. So yeah, just so you know, it is serving that purpose. But I did have a question...you teach young people, young adults, kids. What do you think are the greatest challenges that our youth face today in terms of having a relationship with Christ?
DB: Same, it's the same. It's the same no matter how old somebody is. I think little kids don't seem to have it because this is what I think—two things maybe— I would say one of one of them easy. Number one is identity. Like people really, really struggle with knowing who they are. I think that's everybody. Whether you're 12 or 85, you know, and I think that is so important. And what's hard about it is you can't have somebody tell you who you are you, you have to feel it. And like we don't get to dictate when that moment happens. It does not matter how many times a young woman leader says that to the young women, it just will happen like remember Jesus says to Nicodemus, the spirit is like the wind. Like, it just comes and goes, and we don't know when that moment is going to be, you know, but someone's got to, like, at one point in their life, actually feel that that is who they are. And I think connected to it is the idea that as part of their identity that they are loved, you know, as they are, just in that spot that they're at, like, you don't have to make it to this grade level, or this righteousness level or whatever to be loved by God to be able to be helped by Jesus, like He is there. He meets...He comes and meets you where you are. And I think people don't believe that, you know, they're just like, "I don't think He would come to somebody like me. Do you know the thoughts I have? Do you know, like the things I've said? Do you know the things that I want to do? Do the things I've done? Do you know, you know, all these things?" And it's like, I think somebody can't really accept and it's hard. It's hard to accept that and understand. That's why I said kids don't have a problem with it. Because no kid at Christmas time opens up a gift and says, "Oh, no, no, no. I do not deserve this. You should not have done this for me. This is way too expensive. No, no, no, no, I feel shame. I feel shame that you gave me this gift." No kid in the history of Christmas, or birthdays, or Hanukkah, for that matter has ever, ever done that, because kids know how to accept grace. They know how to accept forgiveness, they know how to accept second chances. And somewhere along the line when we get a little bit older, we don't feel like we are worthy of it, that we deserve it. And it's just like I know...that's the very definition of gift. That's the very definition of grace and I think like we would have a really shameful feeling accepting a really expensive gift, people can't believe in a Jesus that would love them the way that he does. That is so hard for a person to accept that He would love someone like me. We have a hymn that says it. You're supposed to stand all amazed at the love Jesus offers you. In fact, it should floor you. I don't know why you're standing. It's that good of news. That's the hardest thing for people to you know...if somebody came into my office as a bishop, with this problem, that problem this problem, you know, as I say, Okay, okay, the one that I was, like, would agree totally with is when they said, This is too good to be true. This is too good to be true. And I was like, okay, you're on the right track now. It's supposed to be so good that you can't, that you feel almost like...so I don't know. I think that's like what's tough. And how do you solve that? I don't know. But one of the ways I think is love, love solves that. I have such an easy time believing in a God, God the Father, a loving God the Father because I had such a loving father. And I think I'm able to accept grace a lot easier because I have people in my life who love me in that way. It makes it easier. I have a friend, today I was in his class at BYU. And he told us about his wife who's just been recently diagnosed with cancer and he said, I cannot tell you the outpouring of love that our family has received...texts and visits and then he said this line...he talked about group after group after group coming to the house to visit. And then he said..."They were God's love" is what he said. And he said, we talked about the strength that can come to us because of the Atonement of Christ. And I think it can come in lots of ways but one of the ways that...he said this, but I believe it too, I believe that it comes is through the love of other people. That is how...redeemed people love well, when they know like I've been rescued, I've been redeemed I've been saved. And now they're able to love with such fervor and vigor and force and I think that's a way that we receive the love of Jesus is from other people.
MJ: Well and I was just thinking as you were talking that...
DB: I feel like I talked for 12 minutes straight accidentally just then.
MJ: It was great.
DB: Sorry everybody. They're like let's hear Morgan.
MJ: They are not thinking that I assure you, but as you were talking I was thinking about how, like how do we wrap our heads around the love of Jesus Christ? Like how does that even...because it is so foreign to us. And like you said, like unfathomable that He would, that someone would love us to that extent. And I think that like you said, you said love is the answer to that, or the solution. And I don't think it's just receiving that love but also when you start to feel Christlike love for people you recognize like, "Oh, okay, so if I love this person so much in my very limited capacity that I would do whatever I could do to help them, how much more does He love us?" And then that changes us and allows us to recognize our worth and our identity. And I think that's powerful as well. So I think you're spot on. I think the answer is love whether it's giving it or receiving.
DB: Yeah, and you just made me think of this conversation I had with my nephew Spency the other day where...
MJ: Spencey was here with us last time.
DB: Remember the chair had like a squeak when he moved and he was getting the stink eye for messing up the podcast. But I was talking to him and and he said to me, why do you love me so much? Like what? Like, what is it? You know? And I was like, well, weird question. You know, and I was like, you don't need to have reasons, you know, to love somebody. But I did have a moment in that conversation where I thought exactly what you just said, which is like, "Whoa, I have asked that question about the Lord before, why do you love me so much? Like, you shouldn't," you know, and it was interesting that like, all of a sudden, like, in like a different way or whatever to be on the other side of that and just be like, well, I could almost have God say thank you for answering the question you asked me.
MJ: Yeah, that's super cool. I love that. So we just went through the Christmas season by the time people listen to this, not right now...but many of us talk about different names of Christ and we study them and different things. And this is what you kind of break down in this book are different names for Christ. I loved specifically, I really love the chapter about the good shepherd and the sheep. I loved that one so much so everybody listen out for that. But if you're like me, different names of Christ resonate with us at different times in our lives, which stood out to you most or which stands out to you most in this season of your life?
DB: It's not when I wrote about.
MJ: Okay, that's fine. Yeah. We don't discriminate.
DB: Yeah, and maybe it's because it's Christmas, but the name that Isaiah uses of wonderful. Jenny asked the other day, do you think that scripture says Wonderful Counselor, or are those two different names? And I was like, Oh, I don't really care I want wonderful to be its own name. And that is the one that really is resonating with me right now in my life is to like, there's so much like when I look at Him, and I think especially ending the New Testament it leaves me in wonder. I'm like, "How are you so good? Are you really this good?" And it just is yes, yes He is and, and it leaves me in like a state of wonder, you know that He would come to this earth that He would agree, I read this poem today it was cool because like it was in this poem but I've like taught it before in Institute. I was like "Whoa me and this random poet lady like think alike. I like her." It was about Christmas and she says, it talks about who would have thought that God would come to this place. You know, like did the shepherds think that when they came, you know did they ask in this place? He would come in this place? What person would choose an animal trough as the first bed for the God of wonder?
And then the poem ends by seeing all the same God who's willing to stand in the darker and more foul rooms of our hearts. That's the One who chose to come into this place. And that leaves me in wonder. Every time I read the Christmas story. I'm left in wonder, you know, "Really, you would come to this place, to this earth, to these people?" And He says, "Absolutely," you know, and so that's the name that's kind of beating in my heart these days, you know.
MJ: I have another question that relates to names of Christ. And this one comes from my little brother Benson. He said, "In your life, have there been certain experiences that have caused you to have the bells ring, and you have understood a name of Christ, you may not have understood completely before that point?" And I love that he said it that way.
So good. That's the raddest question.
MJ: So is there a name of Christ that maybe there was some point in your life where it was like, Oh, that's what it means by that?
DB: Yeah. Does everybody know, I want church bells on all the churches. Everyone should know that I'm signing a petition sending it to President Nelson. Ya'll can sign it, you know, just like, let's get church bells because like, you know, oh, anyways.
MJ: It would be pretty magical. Like I, where do I sign it?
DB: Okay, good. Good. I said that and my friend texts me the other day and he's like, could you imagine what that would sound like in Utah County, if all of our churches had bells on them? And I wrote back and I was like, "Yeah, happiness, that is what it would sound like," or Europe, one of the two, which is happiness. You know when I read scripture, I said this in the beginning already, I see it happening. The people who edit my books at Deseret Book always have to fix my tense. They're like, this happened in the past, and you write about it as if it's happening in the present.
MJ: You're like, it is happening in my mind.
DB: Yeah and I see...I don't think Jesus healed a leper. Like, I see a name and I see a face of someone that I know, you know, or even myself in this story, and that's where it really comes alive for me and one of the names I do love so much is the shepherd actually, and because of, do you remember that talk from Elder Renlund, when he says He never recoils at His dirty broken sheep. And we think that He would, or that He should. He even gives that ridiculous question in Luke 15, the best chapter in all of scripture. When he says, You know what shepherd wouldn't leave, you know, 99 sheep and go after one that was lost, like, That's normal. And you're like, "Me, I wouldn't," you know, he says it like, like, duh, who wouldn't go out and I read it and I'm like, Well, I wouldn't, like it's cold and dark. And it's one, if you have 99...if I get a 99 on a test, I am not going to fight for the last point. I'm so happy about the 99. If the government wanted to take 1% taxes from me, I would not fight over it. I would let them have it. Like this is fine and good. I would be happy with 82 you know, 82 of the sheep would be like, just perfect for me. You know, and so he says it like it's like what Shepherd, you know, wouldn't go out and because I'm not a shepherd, I read it. I'm like me, duh. Until you know, like the character and the nature of shepherds and the way that they adore their sheep and that they know them by name and that they know their personalities and they are, you know, committed to them that the parable says and wouldn't search until it is found, not until they got tired or until it was boring or whatever, but until they actually, you know, found them and I've had a lot of experiences as a dad like that, that have taught me about that kind of Shepherd. Like I remember Jack getting lost one time and trying to find him. I can't remember if I wrote this is the book or not in in Disneyland.
MJ: Oh, you did.
DB: Okay, I'm trying and like frantically trying to find him, and start yelling in public places kind of try to find like, do I call the police? You know, trying to find him and like never once as I tried to find him did I think oh, but I have 99 others. You know, like I'm fine. Like in fact, I'll be richer, have more time. And all these benefits in my life if I don't find this one. Never did that thought come into my mind because he's mine and I know him.
So I've had a lot of experiences like that. But more recently was another one actually, as a bishop, when I sat in the office with somebody that I love very dearly, and he talked about, was just talking about some of the struggles and mistakes that he made and everything. And I felt like in that moment, God gave me a piece of His heart to see him the way that He sees Him. And, I feel like you're the boy in the prodigal son parable is what I feel like, like I see you, you know, as a grown man, you know, but I see you as that, like, I see you the way a shepherd sees those sheep. It was so neat to have that experience and to see him maybe in just a fraction of the way that God sees him but I was like, Oh, this is how He cares for, this is what an advocate looks like. You know, because I had zero disgust and zero feelings of recoiling, or zero feelings of hopelessness about it. And he felt all those things. He felt gross. He felt like running. And he felt like no one would take my case. And I didn't feel any of those. All I feel is a surge of hope and to fight on your side. And it would be weird for me to like just bring you in like a little sheep. But I want to so it's in moments like that where those names really do come alive, you know? And that's what most recent for me.
MJ: Well, and I love that. David, you talk, you share this story by Elder Lasater about the shepherd in Morocco and a bishop shared that with me years ago, and it's one that has always like stuck with me. And so I love that you not only talk about shepherds but also sheep like what makes us like sheep. And so everybody look out for that part of that book because it is so so good.
DB: Yeah, being called a sheep is not a compliment friends just so you know, but it's gonna be fine.
MJ: No one wants to be called a sheep. If you take nothing else away from this, just kidding, David as we wrap up...
DB: Oh are we already there? That flew.
MJ: I know, time flies when you're having fun with me. No, it was a blast. But as we wrap up, you've already answered this question once before. And so I hate to like beat a dead horse, but I was thinking about it and one thing that I love about this question of what it means to be all in the Gospel of Jesus Christ is that I think it can be very much based on what we're currently going through, what we're currently experiencing, and because of that, it evolves and changes as we evolve and change and as our life circumstances change. I've loved hearing so many different people's answers because whether it's like Marilee Killpack talking about how it relates, she related being all in to her son's experience with getting a bone marrow transplant, or whether it's Scott O'Neil, the CEO of the 76ers talking about how being all in means being present in every moment...and he's a busy guy, so it makes sense that that would be his thought. So I think that it's cool to see how it's so influenced by what we're in right now. So for you right now, David, what does it mean to be all in the gospel of Jesus Christ?
DB: I really think it's kind of what I was talking about earlier, that idea of like, to be focused on a person instead of principle. You know, and I just think, you know, when Peter and John, you know, see that man on the steps outside of the temple and I think Peter for the first time in his life thinks, man, I've I've kind of watched Jesus for three years do his thing. And I've kind of stood in the shadow a little bit in the background for the first time he gets to think, what would He do in this particular moment? You know, and it might be the first time that he actually gets to do that and and he says to the man look at us, which means he's not looking at them. He's probably looking down like many of us might think we would do in the presence of the Lord. We think I would look down in like, guilt or shame or, or embarrassment, but like Jesus, he says, Don't look on us, look in my eyes, I want to look at you and and let you know like right now you're the only like, you're the only one in the world. And he says, silver and gold have I none, but that which I have, I give to you. In Jesus's case, that's everything, you know. And then the man jumps and he starts leaping and dancing around and one of the coolest scenes in all of scripture because that's what an encounter with Jesus can do. And it can happen that fast. The man had been sitting there for 40 years, and one conversation involving the name of Christ, and he's a totally different person. But what happened to Peter before that scene when they're on the beach, and Jesus had cooked them breakfast, and he asked him remember three times do you love me? Peter, do you love me? And he's like Peter, do you love me? And then it gets a little awkward. And he's like, yes, Peter, do you love me at this point? Peter's like, come on, not in front of my friends. You know, like, why did you ask, you know, why didn't you ask Thomas, he didn't even believe you're resurrected. But He asked him those three times. And it's such a funny scene. You know, he's grieved and then he says to Him, you know that I love you. And I kind of think it's a moment where Jesus is saying, Yeah, but I know that you love me, but I needed you to know that you love me.
Because our last interaction was one where you, you know denied me but even though you've made mistakes, you're okay. You still love me, we're still in relationship with each other like, this is fine. And Peter as a redeemed person, someone who feels loved by God is then able to love others with that same kind of love. And to me that's what it means to be all in, to first feel loved by him, and then go out and lift and love the way He would do with that same strength and that's what, to me that's the heart and soul of the gospel of Jesus Christ is to lift and to love the way He would.
MJ: Thank you so much, David. It's been a pleasure. Thank you for being here with us.
DB: Mine, it's been mine.
MJ: We are so grateful to David Butler for joining us on today's episode, you can find "Redeemer" as well as "Almighty" in Deseret Bookstores now and if you just love hearing the sound of David's voice a recording of a talk he gave called "Go and Do" is also available through Deseret Book now. Thanks to Derek Campbell from Mix at 6 Studios for his help with this episode and stay with us, this is going to be a week to remember Be sure to subscribe so that you will be notified of a bonus episode with David and his "Don't Miss This" co-host Emily Belle Freeman. We'll talk to you then.