“Your Book Is a True Book,” Ensign, Apr. 2006, 67–68
The day the missionaries knocked on my door will always stand out as one of the pivotal moments of my life. It wasn’t that I was searching for meaning—I had been deeply religious since childhood. I had spent seven years in a convent, and although I had left that lifestyle because it wasn’t bringing me closer to God, I was involved in my church congregation working with the choir and teaching religion.
In fact, I had made a firm resolution not to discuss religion with any door-to-door missionaries because the spirit of contention frequently arose when conflicting interpretations of scripture were discussed. But the Lord, in His goodness, had prepared me for this visit. A few months earlier I had heard someone make a remark about a “Mormon book” connected to the mythology of South America. This prompted me to want to investigate any light such a book might shed on some themes I had already studied. I had filed this away for future reference, knowing that sooner or later I would read the Mormon book and investigate its mythological validity.
Answering the door that day, I was not thinking about books or mythological themes. I was a busy young mother spending most of my energy tending a small baby and chasing a very active three-year-old. But as I approached the door, my mind was overcome with a kind of vision, a mental picture of Abraham going to the door of his tent on the day he received an important message. I was impressed with the premonition that opening that door would bring a message of some importance.
Nevertheless, I was confused when all that stood there were these two young men labeled as Latter-day Saint missionaries. If it hadn’t been for the “vision,” I would have politely said good-bye and shut the door. I decided, instead, that I needed to find out what sort of message they had for me.
It started out all wrong. One of them asked me if I believed in prophets. Of course I did. But when these young men enthusiastically presented me a photo of 15 men in modern business suits and proclaimed that prophets and apostles were currently on the earth, credibility was stretched to the limit. I had been brought up in a religion whose clergy dressed the part, and business suits were not what they wore! So I decided, generously, to ignore the remark. And I searched mentally for some rational foundation for the “vision” still fresh in my mind.
I do not remember how I made the connection that “Latter-day Saint” missionaries might know something about a “Mormon” book. But once that thought crossed my mind, I was quick to pursue the topic.
“Don’t you have some kind of book?” I asked. They did. I told them I had not found it in the library and did not know where to get it. Maybe they could help me. They could. They volunteered to come back with a copy the following week. And I made a mental note to be unavailable for religious “discussion” so they could simply drop off the book and leave.
When I finally did receive my copy of the book, I thanked the young men and agreed, again without any sense of commitment, that they could come back to answer any questions I had. Later that evening with my husband home from work and the children somewhat settled down, I picked up the book and began to read.
Nothing had prepared me for what I found in its pages. And it was with awe, shock, delight, and some confusion that I shortly announced to my husband my most amazing discovery: “This is a book of scripture!”
There was no doubt at all. I had done enough serious scripture study and had read enough of the world’s sacred literature to become immediately aware that this book was not a record of myth or an ancient history text or anything other than the true word of God. It spoke to me with that spiritual voice, and as I began following footnotes and looking up topics that interested me, it gave me answers to many of the theological questions I had puzzled over for years. It was, without doubt, the most exciting book I had ever picked up, and it continued to amaze and edify me whichever page I opened it to.
When the young missionaries returned as they had promised, I was home. And I had a message of great importance for them. I told them something I felt they needed to know: “Your book is a true book!” And I demanded to know why it was the property of their church, feeling that it was entirely in the wrong hands!
At that point, I was ready to listen to what they had to say. After many months of investigation, I came to know that this wonderful book had not only brought me light and knowledge beyond my highest expectations, but it had also led me to the fulness of the gospel, the power of the priesthood, and the knowledge that those 15 men in business suits were evidence of the true Church of Jesus Christ, present again upon the earth.