(Note: Laura is Rob B’s wife)
I was born as a Navajo Indian and raised in an LDS foster family in Utah. As a Mormon, I was proud of my heritage as a “Lamanite” descendant of Book of Mormon people. But as a young adult, I fell away because I was unable to live up to all of the Church’s standards. “No one can be that perfect!” I thought. Then I started dating Rob, who was an ex-Mormon. He too had been raised LDS, but had come to know the REAL Jesus of the Bible. Through Rob’s patience and the Holy Spirit’s persistence, I accepted this Jesus into my life and found perfect righteousness in Him!
I was born in Utah and raised in both Utah and New Mexico. In the 1950s and 1960s, LDS (Mormon) Missionaries came to the Navajo reservations, teaching their Mormon faith and indoctrinating Navajo parents with their idea that “Families are Forever.” A program was developed that sent Navajo children to foster families in Utah who would give them a year of education at school, as well as teach them the tenets of the Mormon religion. This program was called “The Lamanite Placement Program,” named after the “Lamanite” people in the Book of Mormon who the Mormons claim are the principle ancestors of Native American Indians.
In August of 1975 at the age of nine, my Mom sent me away to Brigham City, Utah, to an LDS foster family. This was where I was introduced to the Mormon faith, but being only nine years old, I didn’t think much of it. I learned about the Mormon Jesus, Heavenly Father and the Book of Mormon. I liked the Book of Mormon because it made me special, because I was a “Lamanite.” I was told that the Lamanite people in the Book of Mormon were my ancestors and the remnant Jews of the House of Israel. I remember asking my foster Mom one day, “If God had a dad and his dad also had a dad before him, who was his dad?” She replied, “We are not to ask questions like that, nor question our faith.”
Over the next ten years, I was slowly indoctrinated into the Mormon Church. I was a “Mormon” and proud of it! But that thinking didn’t last long. After graduating, I started working and living a sinful life. I didn’t care to go to church because the idea of needing to “be perfect” and “choose the right” was crammed into my mind all those years. I felt I could never live up to the LDS Church’s Standards and Teachings. No one can be that perfect!
At age 25, I was pregnant and realized my life needed to change, and that I needed God and the Church. In December of 1999, the clothing company I worked for asked me to transfer to Nevada. This is where I met Rob, who would become my future husband. He was a former Mormon who had just accepted the real Jesus into his life that December. Praise God!
We dated and were engaged within two months, only to embark on a difficult journey of different faiths. By summer, we ended the relationship. In September 2000, I took a new job in New Jersey. A week before leaving, I got a card in the mail from Rob. He expressed his desire that he only wanted to share the true Jesus with me and that I can have a personal relationship with Jesus, like he did. I called him and we debated that issue right up to the time I left for New Jersey.
While I was in New Jersey, I really started to have doubts about the Mormon Church, not to mention the fact that Rob continued to call and share with me about the true Jesus of the Bible. I prayed, read the Bible, the Book of Mormon, and the Doctrine and Covenants, searching for the truth. My soul was literally on the edge of Heaven or Hell. I needed to know the truth!
I started attending Calvary Hope Church that used to hold meetings for the KKK, and I tuned into the local radio station and started listening to Christian pastors. I wondered how these pastors knew God’s truth and I didn’t. How could this be so easy for everyone else but me? Why was I struggling to know the truth? On October 23, 2000, I went to the local library and downstairs of the library, I found books about Ex-Mormons who had come out of the LDS Church. I also found books that exposed many of the problems with the LDS Church. I read them until I was sick to my stomach, because God was revealing the evil of the Mormon Church to me. I also felt an evil presence surround me and finally I had to get out of the library.
I was driving my rental car crying, scared and shaken by this experience, when a Christian pastor on the radio announced how to receive the gift of salvation. I pulled over into a theater parking lot and called my sister-in-law Audra, who had just accepted the real Lord Jesus into her life one year earlier. She answered the phone and tearfully led me in the sinner’s prayer to receive the Lord into my life. The very instant I accepted Jesus into my heart, the fear I had been experiencing immediately left me and was replaced with total peace that only my Savior could give me! I left a message on Rob’s answer machine saying, “I am a new creature!” When he got my message, he replied, “It’s about time!”
“He that hath received his testimony hath set to his seal that God is true.” (John 3:33)