150 Pages by Thursday?
previous next

“150 Pages by Thursday?” Ensign, August 2019

Latter-day Saint Voices

150 Pages by Thursday?

Broken Bottles

Illustration by Anna Godeassi

I was at the lowest point in my life. My wife had asked for a divorce after leaving me for another man. I was 30 years old and living with my mother. I was also close to losing my job.

The senior editor of the newspaper where I worked warned me, “If you come to work intoxicated again, you will be immediately dismissed.” On my way home, I wondered how I could stop drinking.

Just then, two missionaries stopped and talked to me about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I told them I was not interested. But being a journalist, I felt compelled to give them my card.

Several days later, my mother told me that two Americans were there to see me.

“They have one of your cards,” she said.

They were the same missionaries from a few days before. One of them handed me a pamphlet and talked about the Prophet Joseph Smith. Then his companion handed me a Book of Mormon. He asked if I would read several chapters from it. When I agreed to do so, he looked at me closely and asked if I would read 150 pages.

“Impossible!” I said.

“Well, we’ll come back on Thursday,” he said. That was several days away. I didn’t think I could read those pages in that time.

After work the next day, I felt a strong urge to find my friends and go drinking. Then I remembered the senior editor’s warning and the 150 pages I had been asked to read. I went home and began reading the Book of Mormon. I also read the pamphlet about Joseph Smith.

The Spirit touched my heart as I read about Joseph Smith. I also felt the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon as I read and learned more about the Savior. Soon I had read 150 pages. On Thursday, the missionaries returned and asked if I had read.

“Yes!” I said. “All 150 pages!”

I wanted to know more. When they taught me about the Word of Wisdom, I told them I was ready to give up alcohol.

The next Sunday, I went to my first fast and testimony meeting. I shared my newfound testimony of Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon. A short time later, I was baptized and confirmed a member of the Church.

In the 48 years since my baptism, I have tried to keep the commandments and stay close to the Church. I remarried and served a mission with my wife. Over the years, I accepted many callings. I now serve in the temple. Every time I’m there, I thank the Lord for pulling me from the darkness and bringing me into the light.