Not long ago, Elder Riley began a journey that seemed impossible--losing 160 pounds so that he could serve the Lord on a mission. But, soon he learned that, with the Lord, nothing is impossible.
On a Tuesday afternoon I called a recently returned missionary named Riley Murdock, he sounded calm, converted and hopeful for the future. I asked him to tell me a bit about his story. Riley began by explaining that he spent his formative years quite overweight. At the peak of his size he weighed over 460 pounds (208.6kgs).
Riley turned 18 just as the church was ‘raising the bar’ (qualifying standards) on missionary service. These raised standards included, among other things, tighter regulations on a missionaries weight due to the physical demands of missionary service. However, when Riley submitted his papers he was not aware of these changes, so it was a huge disappointment to have his mission application declined.
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For four years he struggled trying to figure out who he was and where he stood, “There were a lot of dark moments. I was always at the brink of less activity, I was so tired of hearing people ask me why I wasn’t going on a mission?”