It’s interesting how the voice in your head can sometime seem to just come up with stuff out of nowhere. I went to pray and read some of the Book of Mormon on my bed a few hours ago and as I plopped myself down that is what I heard.
What is a nice Jewish girl doing here?
Oh my! But as I sat there I just became so very happy, all of the inside of me was just singing with joy! That never happened when I was only a nice Jewish girl. I sat there and prayed for over an hour, and it was just such a nice thing, just feeling filled with love and peace is just amazing and really can not be described.
So a long long time ago, when this nice Jewish girl was in college, before she embraced being Jewish, she decided to explore Christianity. My freshman roommate was one of nightmares, and so when my unknown roommate my sophomore year came into the picture and she was actually really nice, I agreed to going to some places with her. Some of those places included church and on campus Christian clubs. She promised me I would not be sad anymore, because the depression I used to have started in childhood, and it was bad, it was always bad, but I am a person who could have a broken leg and declare that I would be fine…I just dealt with it.
We were roommates for the next 3 years. We were very different people, but we got along pretty well. We had a pretty good core group of crazy Christian friends, and seriously, our fun was going to church, going on walks, going to retreats and other stuff like that. I thought I would find happiness there, but all I received was silence. I never felt or thought that God was listening to me. I wanted Him to love me, and I remember how I felt thinking that if I got baptized then that would be the trick. I did not feel any different after, and God still didn’t say anything back.
My senior year a couple of Mormon missionaries came walking past our dorm suite and being the girls that we were, 6 crazy Christians, 6! We invited them into our living/kitchen area and we talked for quite a bit. They were nice guys, one from Utah and the other from Idaho. One of my suite mates got their phone number and they came over a bunch of times. We invited them to a Friday night meeting and they said they would go if we went to church with them. They came but then they just disappeared, and I know now they were transferred which is a normal thing in the world of missionaries but were were all wondering what in the world happened. We never heard from them again, and no one else ever contacted us.
I am only mentioning that part because sometimes I wonder, what if 3 weeks later I had gone to church with them, and what if I had started reading the BOM? How different everything could have been. But then I am sure I had to go through all the stuff I went through for some reason or another.
I married my husband that summer and we moved across the country. We went to a zillion churches, and felt out of place at every single one. Out of nowhere I said, well you know what, both of us are Jewish, maybe we should try a synagogue! We found one nearby, and it was Messianic. We had no clue what that meant. But for shortness we were in that world for a few years, and then out of nowhere I had to leave. I just had it in me. I did not believe that Yeshua and Hashem could be the same so that was that, and literally the next Shabbat we were in a Orthodox house and we lived that Orthodox life for 3 years.
In the Orthodox world the rules have rules and even those rules have rules. I tried to be happy. I was told that following all of these rules would make me happy, that I would be doing what God wants from me, and that I would be filled with joy.
big blank stare
It started to get rather…not fun, but right at the right moment my husband got a job on the other side of the country, so we left and when we arrived we were just us. We pretty much dropped everything like a lead pipe. I mean, we still don’t eat pork or shellfish, but my goodness, I will wear a short sleeve shirt and gasp shorts! We floated by, and our first daughter was born, and I decided that she needed to know where she came from.
So we found a local place, and she went to Hebrew school and did all the stuff. We attended some things, like the big Shabbat dinners, and Purim and whatnot. But we tried to stay outliners and not core members.
The thread of depression still weaved it’s way around me, staying a steady companion in my life. I did have happy moments, but I was never REALLY happy.
Then BOOM, the COVID thing hit, and everything was shut down. Want to bring horrible depression way up in a person? Keep that person from having any outlets at all. Want to make it worse? Have it go on and on and on and on. In April, May, and June and prayed and begged to just not wake up in the morning. In June I even suggested to my husband to buy a gun. You know that I only had bad intentions when it came to something like that, and he saw through me because I had told him many times before to never buy a gun because I could see myself doing something to rid myself of the pain of living with one of those.
So God in his mercy had a series of crazy events occur. First was a missionary in Sweden contacted me via messenger. When I go and look back through my other diary I can see I was in a VERY bad place that day when he sent his first message. We went back and forth. He told me that God loved me, which I did not believe. There is so much that this little little entry is missing, but so many bad and horrible things had happened to me, that I figured I meant absolutely nothing to God. Maybe even less than nothing. He had never indicated otherwise.
A few weeks into chatting he asked me if I had ever thought of reading the BOM, and he told me I could even download it onto my phone. So I thought why not? My life is already totally crappy, it’s not very likely it could get worse.
So I read and I thought I would find a bunch of really crazy weird stuff, but…I didn’t.
He challenged me to ask God to show me that He loves me. I believe he used the word pray, which I responded that my prayers don’t work. And know what? I didn’t do it, nope, not at first, because I HAD prayed in the past, and it had done diddly squat.
I had some pretty bad days in July as well, and can you believe that amazing missionary wrote to me every single day? EVERY SINGLE DAY! I am like this nobody on the other side of the planet and still he wrote to me!
On July 26th I decided to just try it and see what happens. I figured it would be nothing like always. I felt a little bit of anticipation as I prayed and said, God, please show me that you love me.
OH MY GOODNESS, never in my life would I ever have imagined what happened next. I started to get this amazing feeling inside and it just spread throughout my whole body. He just flooded my body with his love and I just was totally stuck there unable to do anything but enjoy feeling amazing. I am not positive how long it lasted but it must have been over an hour. At the end there were some amazing changes in me. I no longer had the deep pain of the loss of my parents, I did not feel even the tiniest bit of depression, I was SO HAPPY and I was just filled with joy. I knew that the BOM was true. And even more shocking I knew that Jesus was my redeemer. I just realized I skipped the part where I was a pretty big anti missionary. I did not believe he was the messiah, and I actually would use the other name for him which isn’t very nice. Thankfully he forgives things like that.
So here it is months later, and I am still super happy, and I JUST CAN NOT BELIEVE IT! God loves YOU! He really honest to goodness does!
You can get a Book of Mormon at the Ap store, it’s free.
And you can go here and talk with missionaries, or just poke around, because you never know you know?!
And I have my notes totally open!!