LILLIE GROTENHUIS - Free Materials
Lillie Grotenhuis was raised in Houston, Texas in a tight knit nominal Christian home. Sports were an integral part of her life growing up, and her father was her softball coach throughout her youth.
From a young age, Lillie knew God was real and was drawn to a relationship with Him. Although His full character was foreign to her, she knew He was present in her life. Her family attended church from time to time, but the Gospel was not prevalent in her home during her childhood.
In 2014, when Lillie was 14 years old, an unimaginable tragedy struck her family: her father unexpectedly passed away. Lillie’s father was her coach, rock, and best friend. He was everything she wanted to be when she grew up. She was brokenhearted, and in her state of loss and grief, became angry at God for several years. How could a loving God take away her father?
The passing of Lillie’s childhood hero created a chasm in her heart. She would plead to God for answers, but felt empty and alone. In her pain, the only part of life that brought reprieve was her passion for softball; a passion she shared with her father. In an effort to honor her father’s legacy, she poured her heart and soul into becoming the best softball player she could be. It was all she knew.
Lillie found respectable success and accolades throughout her high school softball career, culminating in a Texas 6A state championship her senior year. After a short stint playing college softball, Lillie found her life at a crossroads in March of 2020 when the sport that had consumed her life came to an unexpected end for her. She felt lost and unable to find her true identity outside of the game she loved for 16 years. Nothing could satisfy the gaping hole in her life.
Seeking a fresh start on life, Lillie moved to Orlando, Florida in January of 2021 to pursue her new dream of working at Disney World, the “happiest place on earth.” Desperate to find fulfillment and purpose in the wake of her softball career, Lillie packed her bags and headed to Florida. God used this move to help her reset her life. She began thinking about her long-forgotten relationship with God and even considered attending church. For the first time since her father’s passing, she felt some semblance of happiness and peace.
Shortly after moving to Florida, Lillie attended a local social gathering and was introduced to four missionaries for the LDS (Mormon) Church. She immediately felt drawn to them and was impressed by their genuine love and kindness toward her. Due to her desire to re-establish her relationship with God, she saw this connection with the missionaries as a sign from God and began to meet with them regularly. After months of investigating the LDS Church, she decided to get baptized in May of 2021.
The night before Lillie’s scheduled baptism, her mother flew from Texas to Florida to dissuade her from joining the LDS Church. Lillie was confused why her mother would not be supportive of something that was seemingly helping her grow closer in her relationship with God. Her family’s lack of support for this life-changing decision devastated Lillie, and she found herself being pulled in two different directions, uncertain as to what God’s will really was for her life.
This confusion caused Lillie to turn to the only place she could for answers: God. She surrendered her heart to the Lord and sought for His truth, no matter the cost. By God’s divine providence, Lillie was led to Micah Wilder’s testimony online. It was then that she heard the true, simple Gospel of Jesus Christ for the first time in her life. God poured His love into her heart through the power of the Holy Spirit and opened her eyes to the sufficiency of Jesus Christ for her salvation. This was the catalyst for Lillie passionately going to the Word of God and growing in the knowledge and grace of Christ. It was through the power of God’s Word that she came to know that the only way to be reconciled to God was through faith in Jesus. By the grace of God, Lillie was born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Her whole life she had searched for something to satisfy her heart. Now, she no longer hungers or thirsts for the things of this world to fill her because she has found everything she needs in Christ alone.
In the summer of 2021, Lillie made a public declaration of faith and was water baptized. Shortly after, she recognized that God was no longer calling her to pursue a career at Disney World and she joined the Adam’s Road Ministry team as a full-time member. Lillie has an incredible heart for the Gospel and serves however and whenever she can. She is passionate about sharing the good news of Jesus with others, and is an unabashed witness of His love to the world.