The Mortal Test
A spirit I was, a mortal to be…
The father came and spoke to me.
You’ve kept, my child, your first estate
and now it’s time to delegate…
A mother to give you mortal birth
a body and a place on Earth.
I know you’d like your mother, “kind”
but I have something else in mind.
You see, my child, it’s easy to be
in a holy family that pleases me.
What’s not so easy and takes more grit
is to be placed with parents that are unfit.
A childhood filled with fear and unrest,
you must endure and pass the test.
As you struggle through confusion and pain
Your efforts to find me again will not be in vain.
I love you and I’ll guide you back
if you will withstand Satan’s attack.
Your progression greatly will be multiplied
and I’ll be there waiting on the other side…
with rewards beyond you wildest dream
because you took the path extreme.
The Earth will be your proving ground
but Heaven is where you will be crowned.
You will receive rewards so sweet,
just toss them all at Jesus’ feet.
You will then be allowed to look upon my face
and once again receive your heavenly mother’s embrace.
I know you can do this, I have no doubt
because you’re a spirit Divine and devout.
I’ve planned this life and task to do
because I have great confidence in you.
(1 Corinthians 10:13)
I know God won’t give me anything that I can’t handle…
I just wish He didn’t trust me so much!!!!!
I was inspired to write this poem during our Stake Conference in November of 2004. I had been reading LDS poetry from a book that I had borrowed from the church library and I had this feeling of frustration that all the LDS poetry that I had read so far kept painting this “rosy” picture of happy childhoods and “goodly” parents and how the heroin’s had to find their own testimonies. I thought to myself, why doesn’t anybody write about not being born into this church, yet finding their testimony? I was thinking these thoughts while listening to Conference when the Lord whispered into my heart…”Why don’t YOU write that poem?” I wrote it that night after Conference.
My childhood was not pretty. I was raised in several “homes” and foster homes. Both my parents were alcoholics…in fact, they met at an AA meeting! Both of them had several failed marriages and relationships which resulted in various children. I have siblings, step-siblings and half-siblings, some of whom I’ve never met, even to this day. Others I was raised with on and off at different times and various circumstances. To say the least…it was a confusing, chaotic, and unstable childhood. Through all the chaos and confusion, there was one consistent thing in my life- that was the AV 1611 King James version of the Holy Bible.
My father, (believe it or not) was a southern Baptist preacher! He would preach about the love of Christ and the peace which passeth all understanding, but my father never knew peace, nor did he have a clue about the meaning of the word “love.” (I struggle with the meaning of it myself) As my siblings all turned to drugs, alcohol, sex or insanity as an escape from the torment of our lives, I turned to the Bible. I started memorizing it at an early age. By the time I was 16 years old, I was carrying my Bible with me to school every day and quoting whole chapters. When I was 26 years old, I quoted the first 14 chapters of Matthew on a TV show called,”The Parade Of Miracles”. It was broadcast from a church called The People’s Baptist Church in Corpus Christi, Texas.
I didn’t know Christ or His love, but I wanted to know him. I longed to know him. As I poured over my scriptures, I found reference to Christ in every chapter I could from both the Old and the New Testaments. I wrote poems, read books (many books),about Christ, New Testament times and Old Testament times. As I matured into adulthood, I started “church hopping”, checking out many different churches and religions, each one claiming to have the only truth. Each one claimed that they were the the true church, and with each new church, I came away feeling empty. Finally, after my marriage failed and I started raising my two children alone, I decided to give up on church altogether. Although I could quote scripture better than most preachers I knew, I still lacked an understanding of who Christ was. I knew about him, but I didn’t know him. My problem was 18 inches long. There are 18 inches between your head and your heart. I had Christ’s words in my head, but they had not reached my heart. If I missed Heaven…it was going to be by 18 inches!
Then, one night I happened to see a commercial for a free Book of Mormon, another Testament of Jesus Christ. Wow! It had never occurred to me that the Book of Mormon was a “Testament of Jesus Christ.” I had the Old Testament and the New Testament, what was this? A third Testament? I had never heard of such a thing! Maybe that was the missing piece! I grabbed my phone and dialed the number! When the person on the other end asked if I would like someone to visit me, as well as receive my free copy of the Book of Mormon, I said,” yes!” I had my first visit in February 2004. God bless those missionaries! I sure gave them a run for their money! I knew we were in the “last days”, and the the Bible says,”Yea, let God be true, but every man a liar” (Romans 3:4). I did not trust them; I knew many false prophets would arise in the last days, but I gave them my word that I would not make any decisions until I had read the Book of Mormon.
A funny thing happened as I started reading the Book of Mormon-I recognized my beloved Bible on every page! It didn’t start in First Nephi, either…it started with the introduction to the Book of Mormon and then the testimonies of the witnesses. I recognized God’s numbers, His “set” way of organization; I started pulling out God’s numbers-3,8,12-from the very first pages and I knew that this book was lining up with my Bible. As I read on, I decided that the Book of Mormon was either written by God or by Satan, but it could not have been written by any man! The wisdom was too deep. It lined up too well with the Bible, on so many levels. I knew that it was just not possible for man to have written this book. As I realized this, at first, I feared in my heart that the Book of Mormon was a counterfeit. Was this the strong delusion sent by Satan in the last days that my Bible had warned me about? Were these missionaries the false prophets that I knew would arise in the last days? I was sure in my heart that the Book of Mormon was a supernatural book, but to which end? I also knew that “ol’ smutty face” was a master of imitation and forgery. If anybody could make a “copy” of the Bible, yet twist it, he could! But the missionaries kept telling me to pray about it, and ask God if it was the truth. Satan wouldn’t advise me to ask God about anything! The Bible says in Isaiah 55:11 that God’s word will not return void and it didn’t. I had not memorized all that scripture for naught.
There was only one conclusion I could make about the Book of Mormon. My Bible came back to me and testified to me as I read each page of the Book of Mormon. The Holy Spirit was there too, and so were the missionaries, patiently putting up with my endless questions. I swam through a sea of confusion, but God knew my heart and he guided me back to him. Praise God!!! I’ve finally found the true church of Jesus Christ, and I can testify from my very soul that the Book of Mormon is the truth. It changed my life and it is the final piece to the puzzle of my life. The pieces have come together and I finally have the whole truth. I finally know Christ—REALLY know him, and I have felt his love for REAL this time. I’m home at last!!!
Yediyd…..a Hebrew word. It means: beloved friend.
Book of Mormon
Jesus Christ in Mormonism