I want to share my simple story for two reasons: one, for other Christians to be encouraged to share and to sow the seeds of what it means to be truly saved; two, for other members of the LDS faith that maybe feel like I did, and are hoping that they are not alone.
Personal notes and emails of appreciation along with ongoing prayers for the work being done are like diamonds that glisten in the sun. They are priceless. Sometimes the Lord uses these words at a perfect time. When trials and difficulty parch the soul, words of encouragement bring much needed nourishment to revitalize the commitment, effort, and passion it takes to carry out ministry.
When sharing God’s Word with others who appear disinterested or hostile to God, sometimes people focus on the walls and not the people. “They are unreachable!” we try to convince ourselves. “Their walls of false teaching are too high! Their hearts are impenetrable!”
God’s ambassadors sow the seeds of God’s Word by delivering an all-important message. Christians take joy when those seeds take root and a person comes to faith by the power of the Holy Spirit. There is joy in the harvest and we are reminded that joy can also be found in the act of sowing.
Sharing the message of reconciliation between God and all people is really not about us, but about God. As a result, we can place our whole confidence in the power of the message, not ourselves. We withstand the temptation to judge the effectiveness of the message, by how a person responds. Some will accept God’s message, most will reject it. Our job as God’s ambassadors is to simply deliver the message trusting God’s promises that His Word is at work.
By being in Christ and through Christ, ambassadors become aware of opportunities the Lord provides to share God’s message of reconciliation. Instead of a burden to carry out this commission, it becomes an adventure that can be filled with joy. For ambassadors know that their message from the King has an eternal bearing on every soul.
Sometimes people have the wrong idea of what it means to be an effective witness. We have a tendency to measure an effective witness by whether or not a person comes to faith or not. But the Bible teaches a much different understanding. An effective witness presents the gospel of Jesus Christ in a way that is understood by the hearer, regardless of a person’s response. For example, Noah was an effective witness even though his hearers didn’t believe him. Christians are ambassadors for Christ who have been mandated to carry an all-important message. The responsibility of how the hearers respond to the message is not the ambassador’s responsibility. The effectiveness of their responsibility is simply to deliver the message. How a hearer responds becomes the responsibility of the work of the Holy Spirit and whether or not the hearer accepts or rejects is message. With this understanding, the pressure is off the ambassador.
Determined to become a worthy Mormon, Susan carried out her part by being the perfect housewife, the perfect mother, fulfilling all her callings in the church, and having many babies. Exhaustion and feelings of being overwhelmed were her constant companions. She strove to become perfect, but knew she fell far short. Guilt plagued her life. Mormonism to her was like a demanding parent, she never felt like she was doing enough to receive its approval.