June 3, 2003
JEFFERSON CITY – Converting to genuine faith in Jesus Christ through the ministry of Bible Study Fellowship in the late 1970s has made all the difference for U.S. Rep. Todd Akin, R-Mo.
"My prayer was that the Lord would give me a zeal to do whatever it was He called me to do so I could do a good job for Him," Akin said.
He spent 12 years in the Missouri House of Representatives and is working on his second term as congressman for the Second District which includes western and central St. Louis County.
He said his job is to take good ideas and build them into the law code.
"I recognize and try to understand what the good ideas are, the ideas that make people free and prosperous and happy," Akin said. "I try to implement those ideas within the context of our civil government, and in so doing I become a blessing to every American.
"If you’re an atheist, it’s much nicer to live in a good, Christian civilization where you can have plenty of freedom, because you’ll have a more prosperous, happy life. You may be going straight to hell. You may not care about God or anything else, and you may even break a lot of commandments, but if you’re an atheist you’re going to be a lot better off in a free, prosperous country than in the former Soviet Union, which was an atheist nation."
Kerry Messer, lobbyist for the Missouri Family Network, lived with Akin in a small apartment in Jefferson City for a couple of years when Akin was a state representative.
"He ended every day and began every day both with God’s Word and prayer, and I’m confident he maintains that self-discipline in Congress as he did here in Jefferson City," Messer said. "He’s just a man of impeccable integrity."
Akin is a professional engineer who was educated at Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Worcester, Mass. As such, he believes in certain scientific truths.
"If you have an engineering firm and they want to build a bridge and they really believe in their heart of hearts that 2 + 2 = 5, I don’t recommend hiring them to build a bridge for you," Akin said. "They don’t believe in good ideas. They believe in bad ideas.
"In the principles of mathematics and physics, we understand that there are certain basic rules. The way the whole universe is glued together. I didn’t make the rules, I just recognize that they exist.
"If the legislature wants to repeal the law of gravity, I don’t recommend you jump off any high buildings to see how it worked, because things are a certain way. Likewise, there are things that determine our behavior with pretty interns and secretaries.
"I’m married. I have six kids. It will ruin my marriage if I mess around. The same thing holds true for economics and for other kinds of things that govern the behavior between human beings."
An example of the type of legislation that he writes is the Pledge Protection Act of 2003, a measure that would remove the jurisdiction of lower federal courts to rule on the Pledge of Allegiance. With more than 170 signatures, the bill could be headed for a hearing in the House Judiciary Committee this summer.
Akin studied three years at Covenant Theological Seminary in St. Louis before taking an equal amount of time to dissect the principles that went into the founding of America.
"Here’s an engineer, basically, trying to study the logic of how America was founded," he said. "So it was kind of a cross between the engineering of civilization, history and theology."
He emerged with a tremendous appreciation for the work of the Pilgrims and Puritans. He and his wife of 27 years, Lulli, have instilled that appreciation into their six homeschooled children: Wynn, Perry, Micah, Ezra, Hannah and Abigail. Perry, a systems engineer, just graduated ninth in his class at the Naval Academy.
"In the high school years we just stick the kids in various college classes around where we live," Akin said. "When Perry went to the Naval Academy as a freshman, he had finished a year and a half of accredited college with a 4.0. So that was his high school, taking local college courses."
Who he is as a Christian congressman defines what he does in the United States Capitol, Akin said. Messer remembered that in the Missouri Capitol, Akin always saw his position as God-given.
"To a degree, I see myself as a salesman for good ideas," said Akin, a member of Twin Oaks Presbyterian Church in Ballwin. "I get to sell God’s ideas that make people free and prosperous, so I’ve got the very best product in the whole world.