I Realized That Christ Loved Me

The meaning of church to most people is a little different from what it means to me. Where I live, on a remote island of Alaska, church consists of only two LDS families. We meet together for an hour each week to partake of the sacrament and participate in talks, prayers, and questions. My dad is the branch president, and my family and the other family take turns hosting the Sunday meeting in our homes.

At first I didn’t like church. Maybe it was because I was the only teenage girl on the island who attended. Or maybe it was because I really didn’t understand the Church and had doubts about it. Was the Church true? Did God care? And most of all, What would happen to me when I died?

For a while, I read the Book of Mormon and never seemed to get anywhere. Satan seemed to be doing all he could to keep me from gaining a testimony.

One day I came home from school very upset. I had forgotten my lunch, and my best friend and I had had an argument. I ran to my room, flopped onto my bed, and started crying.

As my tears ceased, I noticed I had left my triple combination of the scriptures on my desk. As I picked it up to put it away, my eye caught a verse I had underlined. I read in Doctrine and Covenants 18:10–11: “Remember the worth of souls is great in the sight of God;

“For, behold, the Lord your Redeemer suffered death in the flesh; wherefore he suffered the pain of all men, that all men might repent and come unto him.” [D&C 18:10–11]

Suddenly I realized that Christ loved me and that I wanted to know him better. I had expected my testimony to be given to me. I know now that I’m not going to get my testimony from my parents or grandparents, or from my brothers and sisters. I have to search, ponder, and pray. But if I have faith, the Savior will help me, and together we will find my testimony.

[illustration] Illustrated by Brad Teare