2014 Utah Outreach Campaign Day Four
"I'm going to hell. I'm a murderer."
This declaration would have startled many and give plenty of reasons for concern. To stand at the door of this man's house, our Truth in Love missionaries received a rare opportunity. How would they respond?
How would you have responded?
After being rained out the previous day, the Truth in Love missionaries woke up to a glorious, sunny, crisp morning with fresh snow in the mountains overlooking Provo. (See picture over St. Mark). It was another day ordained by the Lord to bring the Word of God to those lost in the false gospel and the culture of Mormonism... and the presence of Christ.
"And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age." (Matt 28:20b)
Each morning, we pray that the Lord will open doors. Eager and ready to begin sharing God's Word in Provo, the Lord provided wonderful opportunities.
David was a young Mormon sitting on the fence. He really did not know if he believed "in the same stuff" that Mormonism taught. He did not like the strictness of the church. He initially agreed with the missionaries with everything they said, until they started to define what God's forgiveness really meant. Using Truth in Love's parable of the rebellious teenager, our missionaries proclaim the message, "Believe! Your sins are forgiven right now."
An older couple answered the door. They recently returned from serving as LDS missionaries. They expressed surprise to the Truth in Love missionaries on how they presented their knowledge of Mormonism, yet treated them with respect. [Like many other Mormons we visit at the door, they express appreciation for not being in their face.] When confronted with the truth of God's Word, they never realized how different it was from their own beliefs. The missionaries left with confidence in knowing that they heard and understood God's Word in a brand new way. We trust they will be wrestling with these truths in the weeks and months ahead.
A missionary talked with a young woman living in a trailer park. She had a small child tugging at her leg. Her husband was a devout LDS member, but she never truly understood Mormonism until they moved to Provo. She was expressing concerns about the teachings of the LDS Church. We pray that she will be carefully preserved from a false religion and accept our invitation to come and visit our website.
Another elderly woman opened the door. Only minutes into the conversation, she expressed great sadness over her daughter's death. Two months ago, she died from a prescription drug overdose. The amount of prescription drug use to battle depression in Utah is staggering. We meet these stressed out women every morning and afternoon. The stresses of trying to be a faithful Mormon and fit into the LDS culture here in Utah hangs over this community.
One woman lived in a house that was messy in the inside and un-kept on the outside. The Truth in Love missionaries had an interesting conversation with her. Being a Mormon, she pointed to the LDS Church and its emphasis on success. She did not have a nice house or drive a nice car. Instead, she told our missionaries that she was focusing on the nice little things. Judging by her appearance, she obviously felt the burden of already receiving judgment of not being good enough.
"I'm going to hell. I'm a murderer."
The man looked back at the Truth in Love missionaries with sad eyes. "In fact," he said, "I have murdered twice." His eternal fate was already sealed in the eyes of Mormonism. A murderer can never receive forgiveness for that sin.
Without hesitation or fear, Mary humbly shared with this man the true gospel message of forgiveness. Christ died for all, no matter how great the sin. "Ask for forgiveness of your sins. Believe in Jesus Christ and you will be saved. Jesus told the guilty thief next to him on the cross, 'Today you will be with me in paradise.' The same message I give to you."
The man thanked the two Truth in Love missionaries and went back to work.
Miracles happen when confronted with the presence of Christ through His Word. We not only pray for this man, but the hundreds of other open doors the Lord has provided on Monday and Wednesday. We rejoice that the Lord has provided 360 opportunities to share the truth of God's Word in Provo.