Barbara Thompson
I knew it, and I knew that God knew it, and I could not deny it (JS—H 1:25).

A Special Feeling of Peace

When I was eight years old, our family went on a vacation to the state of New York. I learned that many important events in Church history took place there.

My parents had taught us about Joseph Smith and his prayer to seek wisdom from God. They taught us about Joseph’s experience in the Sacred Grove. They also taught us about the gold plates that were buried in the Hill Cumorah. We had heard these stories many times before in family home evening, in Primary, and in our church meetings.

When we got to New York, we visited the site where Joseph Smith lived with his parents and brothers and sisters. We were reminded that the Smith family loved the Bible and often read from it and prayed together. Then we went down the lane to the grove of trees where Joseph went to ask Heavenly Father which church was His true church.

As our family walked into the Sacred Grove, my heart began to pound. There was a peaceful, wonderful feeling there. I felt something very special as I thought about Joseph Smith and his prayer for wisdom. He actually saw our Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ. I knew it was true. My parents later explained that the special feeling I felt was the Holy Ghost.

Since that time, my testimony of the truthfulness of this event has grown much stronger. As a missionary in Germany, I had the opportunity to tell many people about Joseph Smith, the Restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ, and the coming forth of the Book of Mormon. Each time I testified of the truthfulness of these important events, the Holy Ghost would bear witness to my heart that Joseph Smith really did see God the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ.

When we hear something that is true and will be for our benefit, the Holy Ghost will tell us it is true by a special feeling of peace or a voice in our minds or in our hearts. We will have a quiet assurance that what we are hearing or experiencing is true.

From these and many other experiences, I know that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is true. I know God lives, and I know He answers our prayers.

The Sacred Grove, by Welden Andersen; The Desires of My Heart, by Walter Rane, courtesy Church History Museum