I was sitting on my couch enjoying my day off when all of a sudden I hear three firm knocks on my front door. Like you, I wondered who it could be and I had a thought that went like “someone is about to get me!”
Like a mouse I quietly rose from the couch and tip toed to the door and looked out the peephole and I saw two young guys standing there in black shoes, black pants, white shirts and blue ties then I thought, “am I in trouble?” After that thought I noticed they had name tags on and that read “Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints” and quietly said “it’s Mormons.”
I thought, “I really don’t feel like being preached something I don’t believe in right now” but then I took that thought captive and wondered what the worst thing that could happen if I let them in.
So, I opened the door because they weren’t leaving anytime soon! Once I opened the door I invited them in and we began talking about they were from (Utah) and what they were doing here (on mission.)
Pause… If you are someone who is reading this and thinking “they are Mormons you shouldn’t have let them in because they believe different” I want to say to you that is post is not about beliefs and just because I believe different doesn’t mean I can’t have a conversation. Perhaps if you thought the same the world would be a little more “christian” like you claim to be.
What I do believe is that Jesus was doing something in these two young men’s lives and I could tell that by what they were saying to me. I don’t know about you but I’m all for listening to a story about Jesus because I’ll never get tired of hearing how he is changing lives!
After they shared with me the journey that the’ve been on they started to share with me about their faith I told them my personal faith and beliefs in Jesus. I shared how Jesus saved me and has given me a purpose.
They thought it was awesome how Jesus has worked in my life and we celebrated that together. These guys were not crazy, they had a passion for Christ that was visible!
The Story That Moved Me
While talking they began sharing stories with me about how they go around neighborhoods proclaiming their beliefs and what I was told was horrific. They told me that they have been cursed at, spat on, shoved and ignored. To me, Mormon, Jew, Catholic, Buddhist, Muslim or whatever religion someone is doesn’t give anyone the right to treat someone like that. I felt for these two gentlemen as they continued sharing their horrible memories with me.
They shared how one day they approached a man and told him about what they were doing and the man supposedly threw food at them while yelling “I’m a Christian, I believe in Jesus.”
That doesn’t sound very Christian to me… does it to you? What struck me the most is that most of the persecution these guys were sharing with me was coming from proclaimed “christians.” Being a Christian does not give anyone the right to treat someone like that If anything it gives us the command to serve and love whoever we come in contact with.
What I Learned
Before these two gentlemen left they shared how appreciative they were that I took time to listen to them. It meant the world that someone took time out of their day to sit and listen to what wanted to say.
I shared with them that Christians could learn something from them and that is that Mormons aren’t afraid to go out and share their faith with complete strangers. I think we could learn something from that! I had great conversation this day and I’ll cherish it because it showed me that even though we might disagree we can still have awesome conversations about Jesus.
I learned that I can talk with someone and not compromise what I believe and I learned that showing hospitality along with compassion really do make a difference to people even when you disagree.
One final thought…. I’m not saying you have to agree with with another religion but what I am saying is treat people with respect and dignity because whether we agree or not we are all children of God. Everyone is loved by God regardless of religion, sexual orientation or theology. “Every precious one a child you died to save” are lyrics from an awesome song called ” So Will I” that I try to remind myself of.