Man, I'm a worthless sack of crap. I saw this post at FMH
and just had to ask a question:
It seems like, for some of these people (often myself included), nobody's getting anything out of church. So, why go?
The best answers I'm hearing on this post are "it's for the kids". That's sensible and charitable, to a point. But I think it leaves the obvious question out. Why do the kids need to go? It's certainly possible that they'll get something in the future when you won't or aren't now, and we can't ignore that.
The question then morphs yet again: why go if you're not getting anything and you've got no other souls on your head?
The best thing that I can come up with is that it keeps you "in the system". You're going to church for three hours on Sunday, you've bought in. It's easier to resist temptation because being Mormon, with all the moral baggage that it brings, is part of your identity and it's just harder to sin because you'd make yourself feel terrible. It reinforces cognitive dissonance something fierce.
That said, I live in a dorm room that's almost right across the street from our institute building (where we have our Sunday meetings). It takes me about two minutes to walk home. So, sometimes I go to sacrament, go home for Sunday school and have a snack, and then go back over for priesthood. Sunday school at our ward is wretched, mostly because there are three options: Gospel Essentials (which is taught by the most annoying teacher in the world), Gospel Doctrine (which isn't that bad, but is boring and the room is jam packed with people), and Teacher Preparation (which is too small to be anonymous). Priesthood is no better, but there's a break if I skip SS and more people notice if you skip priesthood than Sunday School, especially if a motivation is being left alone.
Three hours is just a long time, particularly when I don't want to go anywhere most times early on a Sunday morning. Lately, I just don't want to be there for that long.
Thoughts? Does anyone have/want to suggest any coping strategies? Or do you just grin and bear it (or grin and love it)?