“I Will Not Reject My Faith”

“I Will Not Reject My Faith,” Liahona, June 2020

“I Will Not Reject My Faith”

Edouard Ngindu, Katoka, Democratic Republic of the Congo

I became the object of mocking and contempt at work. Why was I hanging on to a job that had become a danger to my spiritual well-being?

Man reading a book

Illustration by Greg Stevenson

Shortly after I was hired as the assistant director of a large library, my team and I began an ambitious project to digitize 37,000 books. One day my supervisor called me into his office.

“Edouard,” he said, “I’ve been invited to present our book digitization project in the United States and to solicit some new acquisitions. I’ve been asked to bring a trusted co-worker with me. I have confidence in you but not in your church. If you renounce your faith, you can come with me.”

Before I could say anything, he told me to think about it and then dismissed me.

That evening, I shared with my wife what had happened. She encouraged me to have faith. The next day, I told my supervisor that I would keep my faith. He was angry and said he’d just travel alone.

A year later, I had an opportunity to travel to France to receive training in library funding, acquisitions, and management. I just needed my supervisor’s approval. He said he would approve only if I denounced my faith. I again declined. He then tore up the document and threw it in my face. Some time later my supervisor approached me again.

“I am about to leave on another trip,” he said. “You can come with me, but the condition remains the same. I will never travel with a member of your church.”

“I will not reject my faith,” I said. He left without saying a word. Soon he began to talk about me to my colleagues.

“I have offered him opportunities,” he’d say. “But he has exhausted them all because of his blind faith. He is a fool.”

From then on, I became the object of mockery and contempt at work. I felt beaten down. One evening, preoccupied with this problem, I opened the Bible and read, “If thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell” (Matthew 5:29).

If the Lord says we should get rid of something in order to save ourselves, why was I hanging on to a job that had become a danger to my spiritual well-being? The next day, I handed in my resignation.

Today, I rejoice in this choice. With courage and faith in Jesus Christ, I faced humiliation at work and temporary unemployment. My new job now provides opportunities unavailable to me before. The Lord has blessed me, and I thank Him for His kindness and His love toward me.