The Great Controversy in My Life
Turning back the clock of life more than 35 years to the mid 1970s, I can still see myself as a young lady who seemed to have everything she wanted. I had earned my Bachelor of Science degree in Commerce, with an emphasis in accounting. I was an activist and had a good job with an accounting firm.
During my firm’s office Christmas party in 1975 a group of student literature evangelists (LEs) and their leader came in and gave a health lecture on the benefits of hydrotherapy treatments. They also distributed to everyone a pocketsized copy of the book The Great Controversy. I was attracted to it by its statement calling attention to a universal “war between good and evil.”
That very night I started reading the book and soon found myself in a state of confusion. I had grown up in a Roman Catholic home and had been raised on the teachings of that denomination. The Great Controversy, however, made me ask many questions. Consequently, I was led to research several topics at the National Library. I started reading books on religion, history, and the nations of the world, especially Israel. I felt that the truth would set me free, and indeed God was showing me the way.
One Saturday morning I was required to be at work around 9:00 a.m. Shortly after arriving there, I suffered a severe headache, so I asked for permission to leave and go buy something that would relieve my pain. While walking along the street, I noticed a building called the Manila Center.
On impulse I decided to enter the open door of that building. There, someone greeted me cordially and offered me a seat. I discovered that they were discussing the Word of God. I listened with interest and became so inspired that I stayed until noon. I had completely forgotten about the headache I had been suffering from. Then someone graciously invited me to stay for lunch. I accepted the invitation and found myself enjoying the fellowship immensely. After lunch a youth oriented program began. It absorbed my interest so much that I stayed until 5:00 p.m. I had forgotten to return to work!
Before I left that day, I realized that the Manila Center was a Seventh day Adventist church. Its members worship the true God—the God who kept me there for eight hours to hear His powerful words of healing, that I might eventually become a believer. That was my first encounter with God.
Six months later I decided to fully accept Christ as my personal savior and was baptized together with my husband. Since then I have held tightly to the promises of God. I wanted to work for Him, so I became a literature evangelist.
I put my heart, mind, and energy into service for my King and thoroughly enjoyed it. In time I was appointed assistant publishing director for student as God would have it, however, circumstances led me to Houston, Texas, in June 2007, my present location. Here I took up the new experience of canvassing in the U.S. In 2008 I was appointed to the position in which I still serve, assistant publishing director for student LEs.
My fervent prayer right now is that we are all vigorously sup-porting the worldwide Great Controversy Project, because many people are like my husband and I were—in desperate need of this book’s message. He and I are Seventh-day Adventist Christians as a result of reading this powerful Spirit of Prophecy book, The Great Controversy!
Praise God, from whom all blessings flow, for He has a plan for everyone. We need to learn His will and follow His plan for our lives. As for me and my family, we will serve the Lord!
Laurencia R. Gonzales, Assistant Director of Student LEs
Publishing Ministries Department
Houston, Texas, U.S.A