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A Mighty Conversion

Simon

I am Andrew Simon comes from Chennai. Me and family been baptized into the only true and living church - the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Chennai. The truth has totally changed me inside out its even challenged me the way I eat, sleep or drink and even work.

From very early age I learned to drink tea as it was a traditional drink everywhere and often it is a must to serve good quality tea for visitors. I used to drink tea and coffee. When I grew up I used to drink alcohol occasionally.

I was never a heavy drinker nor did I have any problem with drinking but I saw many people doing horrible things in the middle of night as I used to work for a very posh pub in Chennai. As a worker, my duty was to serve alcohol of all sorts to our customers many of them are well known professionals and public figures of Chennai. I will not name any one of them, the aim is not to name or shame them but to give witness of the true gospel which works amazingly, powerfully and gives life, love and hope.

A group of missionaries dedicated their time and committed to teach me and my family. I continued to explore the true and living church - the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints independently. The hunger of knowing the truth continued to grow and still it is growing stronger.

I am not an expert but I do know that as a Mormon we do not drink tea, coffee, alcohol because it’s part of a revelation that the prophet Joseph Smith gave us in the “The Word of Wisdom”. He told us it is more than true and it is a commandment that everyone must follow because it will make world a better place and save many lives and stop many fights and miserable deaths.

In middle of night when many people go hungry to bed or people live on street, many of them do not know what they will do to earn bread and butter for their families tomorrow. I saw a group of rich influential people rushing to drink alcohol. Many of them use to drink alcohol like water and they spent money like they have plenty.

When I started knowing the truth that prophet Joseph Smith gave us in the “The Word of Wisdom” that added a new dimension and it became more clear to me as to why we are told not to drink alcohol. 

While I am writing this I’m trying to think of that moment when President Brigham Young arose and proposed that all Saints formally covenant to abstain from tea, coffee, tobacco, whiskey, and “all things mentioned in the Word of Wisdom” (“Minutes of the General Conference,” Millennial Star, 1 Feb. 1852, p. 35); I keep thinking of that wonderful moment that wisdom is valuable than silver and gold. 

Simon Family

I have served hundreds of customers who came to my pub for drinks and they were looking for joy but when they left in dawn they were still unhappy, drunk and directionless about their way to home and joy was not there. They continued coming and paying to buy joy by drinking alcohol but none of them ever found joy.

The answer I knew before that alcohol is not but I used to believe it may be good some time but in the process of becoming a Mormon I knew that it is not good at all!

What we should do to receive fullness of joy? what my customers could have done to receive fullness of joy in their lives?  The answer is loud and clear “In order to receive a fullness of joy, we must strive to be clean and pure, both in mind and in body. Some of the temporal benefits resulting from obedience to the Word of Wisdom are better health and vitality, strength, and endurance (see Brigham Young’s promise in Journal of Discourses, 12:156); greater strength to avoid such physical sins as unchastity (see Grant, Gospel Standards, p. 55); a savings in money not spent on harmful substances (see Grant, Gospel Standards, pp. 50–52); and greater resistance to many of the diseases that attack the body”.

Who know better than me that “Drink has brought more woe and misery, broken more hearts, wrecked more homes, committed more crimes, filled more coffins than all the wars the world has suffered.” (J. Reuben Clark Jr., in Conference Report, Oct. 1942, p. 8; see also Kimball, Miracle of Forgiveness, pp. 55–57.). After I become Mormon, I stopped drinking when I started learning the truth, I do not drink coffee or tea but they question remains after knowing the truth should I serve those people?

Morally as a person of faith and who knows the truth I was fighting within myself. On one hand, it was my job the only means of bringing food for my two small children and for me and my wife who does not work but one the other hand my conscience if I know it is not right to drink alcohol how can I serve others. I left my job. After leaving the job,  I do have peace in my mind. I know Heavenly Father will show me a way to take care of my family with another job.