Hey Georges Creek family! Greetings from Provo, Utah.
Sorry I haven’t updated sooner! Things have been pretty busy here. This update won’t have as many stories about conversations and meetings, but it will give a more general overview of the work going on here. I hope to give an update about people I’ve met and gospel conversations very soon!
The state of Utah is one of the most unreached places in America. Utah (and specifically Provo) is the Mormon capital of the world, and since the state’s founding, there has never been a large presence of true Christianity. It’s estimated that in the Provo metro area, 99.5% of the people are lost with around 85% of these people identifying as Latter-Day Saints (LDS). I’m here with a team from the North Greenville missions students learning from and serving with a church plant called Mosaic Church in downtown Provo. Here in the middle of Satan’s stronghold, this church is thriving. They have dedicated themselves to the faithful preaching of God’s word, prayer, and intentional evangelism.
The Work So Far
For the most part, we’ve been occupying our time with engaging with people on the streets and college campuses. I’ve been able to have many conversations with people who have never heard the biblical gospel and share it with them for the first time. From my time spent learning about Mormons in class last semester, as well as these conversations here in Utah, A few observations: While the LDS church has a huge influence, many of the people here are more culturally Mormon than they are religiously Mormon. They believe the Mormon origin stories and the Mormon idea of who/what gods are, but they see no need to insist upon Mormon doctrine. They simply believe that LDS practice leads to a better way of life here on earth where more people experience more good. Those who do understand their doctrine believe that Jesus came to give hope of seeing your family again in heaven. This is the core problem with the Mormon religion. The LDS church emphasizes that God’s plan of salvation is all about good people getting to live with each other again. The idea that God’s plan of salvation is to save us from ourselves sounds strange to Mormons. They don’t believe that people are naturally evil. Here in this context, God has used passages like Psalm 53 and Romans 3:23 to remind me of the true gospel: Christ didn’t come to save good people from the pain of life. Humans are what cause the pain in this world, so Christ came to call people into a new creation because the old is passing away and evil (meaning all sinful humans) will be destroyed.
How to Pray
As you’re able to pray, here are some prayer requests
- Pray for the team of students out here (myself, and my friends John, Emma, and Rachel) that the Lord would guard us against spiritual warfare. It’s been hard conversing with so many lost people, and the Devil is constantly reminding me of my weaknesses and trying to exploit them.
- Pray for good conversations: the Lord has answered so many prayers to lead us to people we need to talk to. Keep praying in this regard! I’ve really seen the Lord answering those prayers.
- Pray that the Lord would season our speech with Scripture and that He would be what seems glorious, not us: it’s easy for me, when I get into a lengthy discussion with someone about the differences between Mormonism and true Christianity, to get into a purely intellectual conversation. Pray that the Lord would humble us in a way that we reflect Him so that all they see is Him.