Point: God speaks through a living prophet (by Summer Smith)
I’ve been a member of the church all my life. My parents worked hard to ensure that I was introduced to the scriptures and the teachings of the prophets, and through their example, I came to see what it meant to follow the prophet.
When the prophet exhorted us to have family home evening, that’s what we did. When the prophet counseled us to attend the temple frequently, my parents gave up other activities to ensure they could attend every month. When the prophet challenged us to read the Book of Mormon, we put together a schedule and read it.
Following a living prophet has really improved my life. I enjoyed having a stable home with parents who loved one another and honored their commitments, who sacrificed so that I would have more opportunities.
Beyond this, I have personally been blessed by God as I have followed the prophet. My own prayers have been answered through his words as I have studied his conference addresses. I am confident God speaks through a living prophet…
Counterpoint: But… (also by Summer Smith)
The prophet isn’t infallible you know. We don’t worship him and he makes mistakes. One example is how he had the audacity to say something slightly out of step with my political views.
He also has a problematic history of promoting hateful documents such as The Family: A Proclamation to the World. I mean, sure, I personally benefited from having a family that respected divine roles, but what about people whose parents told them they were a boy when they were really an Apache helicopter, or fell in love with their pet hamster?
While the prophet speaks for God sometimes (when he tells us to be loving), sometimes he gets stuck on old-fashioned morality (like opposition to pornography) or even a militaresque mindset of obedience (like staying on the covenant path).
Beyond this, I’m not so closed-minded as to think even though God called a prophet He doesn’t speak to us through other means. That’s why, when the prophet says something I don’t like, I turn to other divine communication like the horoscope, crystals, and The View. I mean, I’m still a member of the church, and I want to follow the prophet…just not always.