A story of faith: An ex-Mormon’s unexpected journey through a child
During the Christmas season we celebrate the birth of the Christ child. Our Savior was born in the most unexpected place - a small manger in an insignificant village. Faith in Christ can be found in the most unexpected places.
Such is the story of Todd, an ex-Mormon who truly discovered the message of Christ while his daughter attended preschool at the church he joined.
I met Todd recently after he signed up to participate in the Please Open the Door initiative (www.pleaseopenthedoor.com) One of the joys of coaching Christians in how to share God’s Word with Mormon missionaries is getting to know the people who are involved. In visiting with Todd via email, I learned of his LDS background.
While living in Virginia, Todd’s family converted to Mormonism when he was in high school. His family was even featured in a training video for Mormon missionaries. By the time he went to college in the late nineties, he considered going on a LDS mission. However, he put off his decision since his faith in the LDS Church was waning at the time. The Mormon bishop in his area called Todd and invited him over to his office. He told Todd that he was personally issuing a call for him to go on a mission for the purpose of strengthening his faith. Before, Todd had spent four months in the local mission field with two sets of missionaries. He had shown great promise in being a great Mormon missionary. Todd eventually declined the bishop’s call and then plunged head first into sin after leaving the Church. His entire family left Mormonism several years later and have never considered attending another church.
After college, Todd met his girlfriend (who later became his wife) who dragged him to church. He vividly remembers sitting in the pew and hating every minute of it. He was baptized and became a member of the church, but confesses that a primary motivation was that he knew he had to become a member of the Lutheran church to marry his girlfriend. After marriage, their worship attendance was sporadic at best. Four years later, their daughter was born. When their daughter turned three, she started attending the preschool at their church.
“The Lord used the preschool to put the fear of a loving God on me. I finally realized why God loves us like he does. I can't help but love my children and want what's best for them. What more can I offer my kids but the knowledge of God and his grace and love for us? The knowledge that he sent his only son to pay the price of our sins so that we will never die. If I do nothing else in this world I can honestly say I started my kids off with the truth of our Savior Jesus Christ. I'm a sinner and I fail daily in the eyes of my God but through His endless grace I am saved through faith in Christ. I never really listened to my grandparents who tried to tell me about Jesus, but I know that was God's plan for me. I look forward to learning the steps on how to share God's grace with those in the LDS faith and hopefully let God's Word and the Holy Spirit work on their hardened hearts.”
God works the miracle of faith in the most unexpected places. We thank God for Todd’s faith, his willingness to share the real Jesus Christ with Mormons, and for the encouragement he gives all Christians to continue to plant the seeds of God’s Word. We may never know how God uses little seeds to grow a great harvest.