Sunday, September 2, 2012

Matt's Testimony

            Through our walk with Christ, many of us have had our curiosity in other religions and sometimes this leads to thoughts of conversion or further research into the religion. We start to question our own faith sometimes and sometimes we slip away from God. One faith that often grabs the attention of believers is Mormonism. This is because, from the outside, the Mormon Church seems so much like Christianity. But, once you actually begin to learn what it's about, you will see that it is the polar opposite. 

             A couple weeks ago, while working with my dad, I met a gentleman named Matt Covert. He has a website all about cars: Fast Lane Review. He shared with me a powerful testimony about his interest in the Mormon faith and his turning to God for the right answers. You may think that the voice of God talking to him is just his own thoughts, but I believe differently. God speaks directly to us sometimes, it's just a matter of us paying attention and opening the ears of our hearts.        


Several months ago I was genuinely interested in joining the Mormon Church, for obvious reasons. I was really excited about similar it was to traditional Christianity (God is the only God, the Bible is the authoritative word of God, etc.). At that point, it didn't really seem like a far-fetched idea to consider converting. One by one, however, red flags started popping up as I learned more and more about the Mormon faith.

Throughout this time I talked extensively with nine LDS (Latter Day Saints) missionaries about every question I had. To my surprise, they had no answers to the majority of the issues I was raising. Their answer was always, "INSERT TESTIMONY, END WITH: The Book of Mormon, and pray that God will reveal it to you as truth." This repeated answer did two things: A) It did not address any of the questions B) It required me to overlook some very basic points that no one seemed to understand.

From here, I studied everything I could get my hands on for a few months. It all became too frustrating and confusing, and in desperation I laid it all out on the table with God. I asked him some very important questions regarding Mormonism, and I was amazed at the manner in which he answered my prayers.

A large part of my studies included testing the spirits to make sure that they, and the information they are giving you, are genuinely representing God. I have no doubt that God speaks to every one of us on a personal level, and he used this part of my study in an incredible way.


1. I was interested in the LDS church
2. I studied everything I could find and talked to many people about it
3. It all becomes a giant mess in my head
4. I went to God in a desperate attempt to get these things sorted out
5. God answered back

The following describes an intense experience that I can never deny. It sounds crazy, but I had an incredible conversation with our Creator. Below are two excerpts from an email I sent to my pastor back home, who has been a part of my studies for quite some time.


"I recently experienced one short moment that I will never, ever forget. I have no doubt that my entire life led up to this one single moment. All of my experiences, ambitions, prayers, studies, and relationships radically pale in comparison to this one event.

The second she left my room that first night I began to pray. I prayed on a level I had never experienced before. I poured out my soul to God, praying that he might see fit to touch the heart of my wonderful, wonderful friend. I prayed in hopes that I had presented these ideas in a way that was intriguing and nonabrasive, and that she might experience just the slightest amount of curiosity. I knew that my duty to share this information with her had ended, and from then forward I had to be hands off. She had to take the next step. And if God saw fit to step in, now was the time. When I finished my thoughts, I started over and prayed them again, and again. I prayed for ten of fifteen minutes, and then stopped.

These thoughts continued to race around my mind for a few seconds. Suddenly my mind stopped, and became completely empty. Then out of nowhere, my mind filled with a new voice. It was quiet, but clearer than anything I've ever heard. The voice said, "Well done, my good and faithful servant."

At that point I absolutely lost it. Did God actually speak to me? Did he tell me that Matt Covert had actually done something that warranted such approval?"


"This week, my five month study culminated in such an insane way. I met with the LDS missionaries again last Tuesday, and we talked about prophets. Kathryn was very involved this time, though I could tell she was very frustrated at some of the things I said. Many times her head dropped and she just shook her head while I spoke.

At this point, I would like to officially modify one of my beliefs. Until recently, I missed something very important in 1 John 4. It does indeed say to test spirits to see whether they are of God, but then it goes on and gives us the exact method by which to test those spirits. In short, if the spirit confesses that Christ has come in the flesh, then that is the spirit of truth. I have not been testing spirits in the proper manner.

I read this passage so many times, and I couldn't get past the fact that the spirit that has visited many LDS members, saying the Book of Mormon is true, DOES confess that Christ is come in the flesh.

I struggled with this for a couple days. At this point, I saw two separate faiths that were potentially legitimate after testing the spirits. This was annoying, distressing, confusing, and spiritually disorienting. I sat at my computer for hours, deliberating through scriptures and reasoning with myself. Eventually it overwhelmed me, my mind was tore itself to pieces. I dropped everything, went outside, and ran for quite a while. I was really upset that the Word of God wasn't clearer, and I was so desperate to get this sorted out that I started to cry. I just prayed "help."

Eventually I calmed down and returned home. God must really know how to time things, because when I sat back down at my computer I saw that I had a new email from you. You introduced me to 1 Corinthians 3:10-13, and I dove back in.

God says (through Paul) that others will build on the foundations that Christ laid. He also says that the foundations of Christ can never be changed.

In the midst of this portion of my study, Kathryn said she couldn't understand why I hadn't asked God directly, regarding these difficult issues. My caution regarding spiritual affirmation made me skeptical. But, as a genuine seeker of truth, I branched off to research what the Bible says about asking God for help. I was stunned at how many times God says in the Bible that he will provide you with wisdom and guidance. He also says that if you ask him anything in his name, he will answer. After spending a couple hours on this topic, I decided it was my privilege to seek help from God. These months of studying, the last two days in particular, had turned into somewhat of a burden. Shouldering the search for truth, not only for myself but for Kathryn as well, had become almost unmanageable.

I walked into my dark bedroom, shut the door, and fell to my knees with powerful emotion. As a believer in God's promises throughout the Bible, I had faith that God would openly hear what I was about to say.

As you know, a couple weeks ago I believed that God spoke to me. The following experience infinitely reinforces that belief, and I will never question it again. I haven't shared this with anyone else.

I lowered my head and quietly began speaking to God. I said something close to the following:

"Gracious Heavenly Father....Creator of everything....this is all just a big mess in my head. I am your servant, and I want to know you so that I can serve you. I have been studying everything I can get my hands on. I'm ashamed to admit this....but I just now learned that as a believer, I can go right to the source. I need clarification. I need to sort this out. I accept You, let the Spirit fill me....Give me wisdom and discernment as I continue to learn about you. I know that you said I could ask you anything, and you will answer me. I don't know how I'm supposed to hear your answer, so I'm just going to ask the question. Is the Book of Mormon true? Is Joseph Smith true?"

I opened my eyes and sat there for a moment. I almost got up from the floor, but I felt compelled to stay where I was. I closed my eyes again. The same voice from a couple weeks ago spoke to me again.

It said, "The Book of Mormon is (I fought the answer for several moments before the last word was spoken, because I could tell what the coming answer would be)....true. Joseph Smith is (I fought this answer too)....true."

I became so emotional. From this moment on, I prayed in silence. I prayed, "Lord....a spirit just spoke to me. I've learned that I need to test this spirit to make sure it is representing you. Do I need to test this spirit?"

The voice said, "Yes."

I knew that in the next few moments, everything could be clarified. Like a computer, my mind raced through and arranged everything I had learned in the past five months. In silence, I continued to pray, "Father....First the spirit said the Book of Mormon is true. The Book of Mormon says that Christ came in the flesh. The second thing the spirit said was that Joseph Smith is true. Joseph Smith also said that Christ came in the flesh. He built on the foundations of Christ, but I believe his building materials were weak....he changed what you taught in the Bible. He said you are not the only God, not eternal, and that you Word needs changing. I believe that You, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit are the same being. Since You are one and the same, changing You also changes the foundations of Christ, which means that Joseph Smith was not a true prophet, for you taught that the foundations of Christ can never change. If a spirit confesses that Christ has come in the flesh, and then suggests that the foundations of Christ should be changed, that is not the spirit of truth."

The voice spoke to me again in a lighthearted and pleased tone, “
Well done, my good and faithful servant."

What relief I felt in that one moment! I was so overwhelmed by what was happening, and so hungry for more! I continued to pray in silence, "My incredible God....thank you! Thank you! Please tell that I may hear it from your very lips....Are you from everlasting to everlasting? Are you the only God? Is the Bible meant to be read literally?"

Fearing that I had overstepped the boundaries of faith, I waited. But the voice spoke again, "I am from everlasting to everlasting. I am the only God. The Bible is literal."

Saturated with passion, I asked one final thing. In silence I prayed, "What do I do now? Do I tell Kathryn about this? What do I do about Kathryn?"

The voice replied one last time. It said, "Do nothing. You have done your part. It's my turn now."

I thanked God a final time. And since He was not physically in the room with me, I kissed the back of my own hand in an attempt to express how much I loved Him in that moment.

I stood up, and my burdens were gone. I was filled with a joy that our language cannot do justice. I outstretched my arms, looked to the sky and proclaimed aloud, "I'm free!" I remained like this for several minutes to bask in the presence of the Lord.

Hours later, I returned to speak with God again. In silence I prayed, "My undeniable Heavenly Father....I know that I can always ask you for wisdom and discernment. I don't know if I'm allowed to ask for wisdom and discernment on behalf of others. But if I am, here is it: Father, I pray that you would fill my wonderful friend Kathryn with the Holy Spirit and that she would overflow with wisdom and discernment."

Again, the voice spoke to me, "Do nothing. I will help."

Sounds a bit crazy, yeah? It's all true though. I spoke about this at a church a couple months ago. People were shocked and enlightened. I'd love to get up in front of another church or youth group and speak again.

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