I was raised in Kaysville, Utah in the LDS Church and when I was 19 I decided to serve a mission for the LDS church which was for 2 years and I was called to serve in Orlando, FL. I believed everything I was taught in the LDS church and believed it with all my heart. About a year into my mission my views and beliefs about some of the doctrines I had been taught all my life began to change. I met another missionary that was challenged by a Baptist minister to prove his beliefs using the Bible and as a result this missionary became a born-again Christian while on his mission and we became really good friends. He encouraged me to read the Bible as well and so I decided to start reading the Bible, specifically the New Testament for the first time, this replaced my Book of Mormon study.
I thought it was foolish to preach the cross (1 Cor. 1:18) and realized later that I was an enemy of the cross of Christ (Phil. 3:18). I believed I was doing the works of God, that I had the full truth, and that Christians were deceived, but I didn't realize how in the dark I was until my eyes were filled with mud and then washed by the Word of God just as Jesus put mud in the blinded man's eyes and then told him to wash his eyes with water (John 9:1-7). I was like Saul, going about destroying the Body of Christ, ravaging the Christians, but I realized through the Word of God that I was a wretched sinner and I needed to beat my breast and plead for God to have mercy on me (Luke 18:9-14). I was not righteous (Romans 3:10-12), my righteous acts were like filthy rags to God (Isaiah 64:6) and I couldn't make myself "worthy" or deserving of His grace because I was a sinner. The hardest thing for me to accept was that grace was a gift of God offered to me by my faith in Jesus alone and not by my efforts. I couldn't earn it by my works nor could I combine works with that grace for it would cease to be grace if I did.
Ephesians 2:8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.
Romans 11:6 And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work.
Over the last year of my mission I started to learn how to trust the Bible completely and to trust Jesus for my salvation alone. I began to piece together the true gospel of Christ taught by his own mouth and the mouths of his apostles, from the Bible. As my beliefs were transformed, my relationship with Jesus Christ developed into a personal, intimate one. I began to truly live. After a long time I came to the point where I completely accepted the Bible as the true Word of God above any other book and it became one of my greatest joys to read and study.
Shortly after I was honorably released from my LDS mission I gave my life to the Lord Jesus and became a new creation in Christ Jesus (2 Cor. 5:17). I was washed with the Word of God (Eph. 5:26) and was regenerated and renewed by the Holy Spirit (Titus 3:5). I returned to Florida to be a member of a Christian band and ministry called Adam's Road. All of the members had also been LDS and had left it to have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. On October 29, 2006 I decided to be baptized by physical water, not into an organization or religion, and not for salvation, but as an outward expression of my faith that I was saved by the grace of Christ, and that I accepted Jesus as my Savior and Lord. Praise God!
Well that's the short version. So if anyone has questions or wants to know more about what God has done in my life, I'd love to talk to you. God bless.