I've had this blog for a while. My intention for it was to spread laughter, and really to just remember the funny things my children said to me. I imagined myself as an old widowed woman living with my fifty cats (kidding!), and reading this blog to relive my memories. Yet, I had a hard time keeping up on it. Little children have a way of doing that to you. I love children and the funny things they say, and this was my focus for this blog. Lately, I have felt the tug at my heart to do more with it. I've ignored that feeling for some time now. I allowed myself to be bogged down by my insecurities and my feelings of inadequacy.
I would much rather be behind the scenes. I don't like the limelight. Some may be surprised at that because I am vocal about my views on things, but in reality I don't like to be put on the spot. I'd much rather push others towards the limelight. I wanted to ignore this prompting, but I can't do it any longer. I felt that sharing my journey of faith is helping others, and I do so much want to help others "Come Unto Christ." I don't want to live in regret and the worst regret is not doing something you feel God is asking you to do. I will still blog about children as I love them, and my current calling in nursery is such a blessing to me. I love those darlings! I love to "Behold [the] Little Ones." I know that I am not an official spokesman for the Church. So, don't take me as one. I am just a member who loves the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. So, any error is an error on my part, and if you want to correct my understanding on a subject, please do. I am on this journey called life to learn, and grow. I know I need all the help I can get.
And so, it begins. (Please know I am inwardly FrEaKiNg oUt right now.)
Where do I start? I guess I should start at the beginning. I grew up in a faithful Bible believing home. (Please don't ask what my former faith was as I don't want this to seem like I am bashing my former religion. I love my family and friends who are of that Christian faith. I don't want to disrespect them in any way.) I am grateful for having the knowledge of God. I'm grateful they taught me how to love the KJV of the Holy Bible. These are gems of great worth to me.
I always felt the Bible was the only source of God's word. I had no idea and had never even heard of the Book of Mormon. In all honesty, I thought of "the Mormons" as another name for the Jehovah Witnesses. I met my husband, a Mormon through a co-worker (who was a Ward Mission Leader...I'll share that story another time). I told my future husband that I wanted NOTHING TO DO WITH YOUR church. In my mind I was thinking, "your crazy cult church," as this is what I was told. I got an eduction when I told others I was dating a Mormon. I found out about all sorts of things "The Mormon Church" teaches and believes. (We prefer to call it the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints...there is no such thing as a Mormon Church. You can verify it if you want by visiting www.mormon.org.)
I wasn't shy about my feelings on the Church. Nope. Not shy at all. You might say I was a bit HATEFUL. Yes, I was a hateful person when it came to all things Mormon. In all honesty, I was downright UGLY when it came to this religion. Imagine living with an anti-Mormon constantly at you and always on the attack. This was the lot of my poor newly wedded husband. He truly behaved like a Saint. People think I joke when I say that I was surprised he did not divorce me. He loved me enough and believed I would be willing to hear the gospel that he tolerated my madness.
You see, I grew up with a fear of Satan. I was very scared of him. I saw him as the opposite in power to God (That is not true). So, I was really scared if anyone said, "This is from Satan." So, I got prejudiced against the Church when someone I respected told me that Joseph Smith did not see God, but saw Lucifer appear as an "Angel of Light." (See: II Corinthians 11:14)
[I have found that there are two things that keep people from hearing, truly hearing the Fullness of the Gospel. It's fear and/or pride. I had both.]
Well, that was all it took for me. Right then I believed that the Book of Mormon was written by Satan. That Satan inspired Joseph Smith just like God inspired prophets to write the Bible. I was on a mission after that to prove to my husband how wrong his faith was and how misguided those Mormons were. It's so ironic since I wasn't attending any church at the time. I was a self-proclaimed religion-free Christian. I didn't need a church telling me about God. I didn't need anyone telling me what the Bible said. I knew what it said, and that is all that mattered. I had a relationship with God. (That is a laugh as I rarely prayed or read the Scriptures.) So, yes, folks, I will say it. I was a hypocrite. Not proud of it. Just telling it like it is...or was, as it were. You know what I mean, right? (I hear a chorus of people saying, "Right." So, now I shall proceed with new-found confidence that I am being clear.)
My husband challenged me to read the Book of Mormon. In his mind, I'm sure he was thinking. "This is all it takes for you to know for yourself. Once you read it. You'll know." (Sadly, I am a terrible wife or a forgetful one because I can't remember his exact words. I can't ask him because he is sleeping.) I was thinking, "HA! I'll read it even though I am scared it's from Satan, but I'll look into the abyss of hell to prove to you it's from him. I got you now!!!! HA HA HA!!!! (If you want to imagine a cackle of a witch..feel free to do so, as this I feelit is appropriate.) You'll see how right I am, and how wrong you are; then you'll have to admit it's from Satan. I know the Bible. I can use this knowledge to prove it's from Satan." (Say this with a sing-song voice: "Prideful!")
So, I began reading it out of spite. Pride. Makes me think of that verse on pride and being humbled. It's laughable now. I read it, fasted, prayed (Yes, there is more to this story. A conversion is never so cut and dry. I just don't want this to be a novella.), and took a day off from work to hole myself in my room. After a while, I really wanted to know. My husband, good man that he is, told me to focus on the principles in it. Were they good? Or were they bad? Can Satan inspire goodness? (If you want to know, no he can't. He is the author of evil.)
I wanted it to be true. I had a little particle growing inside me that wanted the Book of Mormon to be true. However, I wasn't going to say it was from God unless God told me it was from Him. He had to tell me Himself. And guess what?! He did. God always answers a sincere and humble prayer. I received my answer by the power of the Holy Ghost. I can't deny it.
The Book of Mormon really can only be one of two things. It's either from God or it's from Satan. There is no middle road here. There is only absolutes. I know it was from God because I tested out the promise at the end of it (See: Book of Mormon: Moroni 10:3-5). You can take my word for it or you can read it for yourself. James 1:5 gives the formula: "to ask of God if he (or she) lacks wisdom." I lacked a lot of wisdom. God showed me the way. I know and testify that the Book of Mormon is what it says it is: Another Testament of Jesus Christ. It's about Him. It's about His divinity. It's true and it is from God. The same God of the Holy Bible. The same God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
I hope you would request your own free copy of it and find out for yourself. Don't take my word on it. You can continue to be like I was in the past and believe what others said about it. Or you can read it for yourself while sincerely praying with the intent to find out from God if it's from Him. The choice is yours.