During my senior year in high school I had a friendly discussion with a Christian friend of mine about the nature of God. He was aware of (and baffled at) the Mormon belief that we can one day become gods. When he asked how I could believe such a blasphemous teaching I asked him if he thought God was supremely happy. He said yes. Does God want us to be supremely happy? Yes. Why would God not do everything in His (all-encompassing) power to help us become like him? In other words, God doesn’t need to be above us, He’s not going to lift us only part of the way up to him. He wants us to become His equal, to be as happy as He is, not slightly less. (yeah, I know, not the most sophisticated of answers but it served its purpose)
No, my friend didn’t become Mormon. But for me that experience served as a good contrast of the Mormon perception of God vs. everyone else’s perception of God. It’s the greatest of all our doctrines. Now, I don’t claim to know what “be like God” means exactly, but I believe it’s possible. And either God loves us that much or there is no god.
I have a thought experiment in which I try to construct the perfect “religion”. This, of course, is impossible to do without some kind of foundational belief or given. My givens are that God exists, that He is happy and that we’re His children (yeah, I know, those are big givens). After that—the Mormon belief that God wants us to become perfected like Him—I just can’t imagine a more sensible outcome. It makes the word “eternal” mean something. It paints some kind of a picture of what’s possible. It just makes so much sense.
Prophets, “religion”, the Holy Ghost, priesthood, baptism, temples, agency, the BoM, Jesus Christ and the Atonement are all just those things that God has given us to help us become like Him. They make sense to me because becoming a god makes sense to me. If I didn’t believe I could become a god most of that list could go away and I wouldn’t miss it. Yeah, we’ve got some problems, some gaps, some spots, some questions, but it’s either the one that says I can become like Him or it’s none at all.