My family was Mormon. For the last several years, my father has been working on his masters degree in religious studies. While doing so, he came in contact with a former professor at an all Mormon college. The professor led my entire family out of the bondage of the church. I was the last to listen to him.
My husband was baptized and we were raising our children appropriately in the eyes of the prophet. We thought we had it all figured out. At home my children were struggling with abuse from a husband/father who was battling severe PTSD (Post-traumatic Stress Disorder). We received no counseling from the leaders of our church. My husband was the priesthood holder of our home and therefore I was to accept his struggles and help him through with prayer. Then I met a family from Christian life.
This family invited us to church. We went, and I was in total shock at the hand raising, the dancing, the informal preaching, the attire. I thought “what have I done”! By the end of the very first service in September, I was in tears, standing in front of the church having someone lay hands on me. I knew that throughout all of my struggles, all of my questions about religion, that the answer was in front of me for the first time and I couldn’t let it go. I lived for Sundays. I started praying all the time. No one was telling me to pray with my arms folded or finish with a certain line. I just got down on my knees poured out every piece of my heart to him and let him overtake the struggles and the pain. The very first day we went, my daughter came home with a Bible verse to remember, and I will never forget it. It was Proverbs 3:5, “Love the lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.”
That prayer wasn’t for those preschoolers that day, it was for one preschoolers mommy. A mommy who needed to know that God never intended on us having a prophet to explain how to live every aspect of our lives, he never intended on loving him being so difficult. He just wants us, all of us, poured out at his feet giving all we are able. On October 14th, I accepted the Lord into my heart and was saved in the front of that warehouse, or was I? Some days I feel like the day I was saved, was the day I hit my knees, weeks before and cried out to my father in heaven that I knew him, that I needed him, that where he was leading me, I would follow. That I would follow him with all my heart.
Since that day I took the courage to make my husband leave our home. I filed a restraining order and had him admitted into inpatient treatment for PTSD. The restraining order was just lifted this week, and my children got to hug their father for the first time in nearly 2 months. His eyes were different, he wasn’t angry, he was healthier. He loves his family and he understands why I proceeded as I did so intensively. What he didn’t understand is where my strength came from? I told him that “My strength comes from the Lord, the maker of Heaven and Earth.” This too will pass, and I believe with all I have that Jesus is working in our home, working in our hearts. We will be together again healthier in mind and most importantly for the first time in our lives healthier in spirit. The Lord is working so diligently, sometimes even carrying me across the unstable parts of my life right now. The little timid Mormon is now a strong bold Christian. I wear my blue jeans to church. I cry, and I raise my hand every chance I get, for I was sin bound, but his grace found me! Thanks to all those who prayed with me, and all those who have been so welcoming.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6