One place I see LDS and Evangelicals talking past one another is on the issue of eternal families. LDS longingly look forward to the day in which they can be together with their family for ever. Temple wedding versus chapel wedding — “don’t you want an eternal marriage?” When LDS missionaries ask Evangelicals “don’t you want to be with your family forever?” they often get a quizzical “What? No.” And with that Evangelicals seem to be tossing aside something that is precious to LDS.
It’s not that we Evangelicals don’t want to be with our families for all eternity, it’s just not any part of our focus when we think of heaven. We look forward to spending eternity with Christ (as I’m sure LDS do as well). We actually do believe that we will be with our families forever. But we don’t think our family will be limited to our immediate biological family. We believe that we will be in loving, intimate relationship with EVERYONE in heaven, not just our families. The closeness I share with my wife, I’ll have with everyone, and I’ll have eternity to get to know them. I look forward to catching up with Paul, Michaelangelo, St. Francis and a little boy in Kenya whose name I don’t even know, and listening to them all recount all that Christ did for them.