I Recognized the Word of God
January 2016

“I Recognized the Word of God,” Ensign, January 2016, 76

Latter-day Saint Voices

I Recognized the Word of God

São Paulo, Brazil

man reading Book of Mormon

Illustration by Allen Garns

While in an airport several years ago in São Paulo, Brazil, I saw in a bookstore showcase a book titled “The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ.” I doubted that our decaying and directionless world would accept another testament of Jesus Christ, and I spent the weekend thinking about the book.

Finally, I could no longer endure my curiosity, and I returned to the bookstore to buy it. When I arrived, however, I couldn’t find it. I described the book to the store attendant, but he said he had never seen it. Nor could he find a record of it, even though all books displayed in the showcase were cataloged.

Sometime later while in a pharmacy, I noticed an open book on a counter. As I began to read it, I learned about a man named Korihor who insisted on doubting the power of God and was eventually struck dumb. When I reflected on the words I read, I recognized them as being from God.

During this time I had been looking for divine direction. One day I knelt and fervently prayed asking God to show me the true path that would bring me to Him. A few days later our son became ill, so I returned to the pharmacy. When I was about to leave, three young Americans wearing name tags entered. I immediately felt a warmth in my breast, which prompted me to speak with them.

They told me they were in Brazil to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. I asked if they could teach me, and we scheduled an appointment.

When I heard about the Prophet Joseph Smith for the first time, I knew my prayer had been answered. Then the missionaries gave me a book. To my astonishment, it was a Book of Mormon—just like the one I had seen in the showcase. I again felt a sweet warmth and became so happy that I was barely able to speak.

The missionaries explained the origin of the book and then asked me to pray and ask God if it was true. I already had an absolute certainty of the divinity of the book, for the Lord had shown it to me—twice. Nevertheless, I examined it in great detail. Upon reading chapter 17 in 3 Nephi, I knew it contained a divine story because it contained the words of Jesus Christ.

The foundation of my testimony is in knowing that the Book of Mormon contains the word of God. It has changed me and continues to change me.

Sometime later while in a pharmacy, I noticed an open book on a counter. As I began to read it, I reflected on the words and recognized them as being from God.

IlLustration by Allen Garns