Missionary Moment: An open door policy

Sunday morning my wife answered a knock at the door; being the fifth Sunday of the month, we were not expecting anyone to come to the house. She called for me to come to the door.

I was in the middle of helping my son write a talk for Primary he was scheduled to give that afternoon. The topic of the talk: The mission of the Church is to invite all to come unto Christ.

When I opened the door, I saw a pair of  missionaries from another church.

As I stood at the door, I thought briefly about engaging the pair in a scriptural debate, but decided instead to have an intelligent, two-way discussion about our different beliefs.

I listened politely to the door approach, and thanked them for bringing me a message about prayer. I accepted their tracts and then shared my religious affiliation with them.

I then engaged in a discussion of various religious principles and beliefs with the senior companion of the two. We discussed the need for prophets, with the counter argument that Jesus had warned against listening to false prophets who would come after his death.

That topic lead to a discussion of the apostasy and putting the Savior’s warning into proper context. I bore my witness of the need for prophets and then bore testimony of the apostasy and the subsequent restoration of the gospel and priesthood authority through Joseph Smith. I provided a brief introduction to the First Vision and again bore testimony of the visit of God the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ, to the boy prophet.

Next, I brought up the topic of the Book of Mormon, Another Witness of Jesus Christ, after they brought up 2 Tim. 3:16. Not having a spare English copy to share with these missionaries, I challenged them to obtain a copy through Mormon.org and read, ponder, and pray about its truthfulness. I testified of the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon and how it bears witness of the divinity of Jesus Christ. I then quoted Moroni 10:32 and invited them to come unto Christ.

During our conversation, there was a lack of contention, no demeaning of our faiths, and a genuine tw0-way dialogue. Hence, the Spirit was able to attend that conversation, and bear witness of the gospel principles that I shared.

As the two missionaries departed, we shook hands and shared our feelings of mutual respect for our faiths. We parted as friends.

I am grateful that I approached that conversation with the spirit of love and resisted the desire to engage in debate. Because of this, I was able to share the gospel message with them and invite them to come unto Christ.

In the future, I plan to keep an open door policy for those of other faiths who want to share a message with me. Most importantly, I plan to purchase several more copies of the Book of Mormon to share with those missionaries of other faiths that come to my home.

5 thoughts on “Missionary Moment: An open door policy

  1. Yeah, having a spare BoM is key. I have a few dozen in my office (full disclosure: Bookslinger has sent me a few copies).

    I need to learn from you about that “not having a spirit of contention” thing. When the JW come to my house (which they do often) I can’t say I am as friendly as you are, although I do offer to trade them a BoM for an “Awake!” magazine. I haven’t had a taker yet.

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  3. This is such a wonderful example of missionary work. The seeds are there. Most of the time we want to contend and make our point. If somebody’s mind is a way, contention will not change them. We must be civil as we discuss the gospel. I guess it is the same with government related things. A good discussion is key. We can learn from each other.

    Testifying was an element I read several times in this story. Brian– you could have just gone off on them, but this was a time when you were helping your son write a talk. What a good example for that young boy.
    Through this example, you taught you son.

  4. Thanks for sharing that story Brian! This is a topic I’ve been considering for some time. Our ability to stand as witnesses of God at all times, in all places, and at all times, is hijacked by pride in so many circumstances. Thanks for rising to the opportunity and providing an example. I’m going to share this with my facebook friends and on my tumblog.

  5. I really like this post and the comments. thank you for sharing it.
    I don’t like to interact with those who refuse to have a dual interaction, though. If they will never take our information, I don’t feel apt to take theirs.

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