Mar 1, 2004

Around 10 pm I went out to the grocery store to get some food since we are running low on bread and milk and all that stuff. Anyway, I was driving in the car and instead of going directly to the supermarket I drove around some. I haven't cried in awhile, but I cried tonight. However, they weren't tears of sorrow, or tears because I felt sorry for myself, or anything like that. Some of them were tears of joy, but most of them were what I would call tears of testimony. When I feel the Spirit testify something to me, I automatically start to cry. That's just my natural reaction to feeling the spirit. The stronger the spirit is, the more I cry.

Anyway, I really felt the Lord's love for me tonight. I literally felt his arms wrap around me. I remember telling my Mom a few months back that I had always wished, especially during those times of trial and angst, that I could literally hug my Father in Heaven. She told me that my Aunt Maureen experiences that all the time. Well, I experienced it tonight, and it was extremely powerful. Again gratitude filled my heart, and as I thanked the Lord for his wisdom, and again asked him to help me to trust him and his will. He literally hugged me. I felt so warm and so loved. Peace warmed my heart and again testified to me the power of faith and of hope.

The Lord confirmed many things to me tonight. I love Him so much! I cannot possibly comprehend the love he has for each one of us! But to feel that hug, and to feel his love, and to know that he was looking out for me, guiding me, answering my prayers...and knowing he had such faith in me to be able to discern and to choose the right, was just so wonderful. There are no words to describe it.

I think a lot of what has happened is a consequence of some misguided choices I made in early January. I do not believe that the Lord punishes us, but the repentance process is indeed a beautiful and remarkable gift, and I think I have been going through that as well as going through other lessons and trials. I know the Lord forgave me a long time ago, but I was finally able to forgive myself tonight. My knowledge of the Atonement has greatly strengthened since the beginning of the year, and this gosh I have never experienced such peace! My depression has been fighting me all these years, and the Adversary has used it to control me and my emotions. But no more. I know that there will be times when I will be weak, but I am determined to beat this here and now. The Lord has blessed me with a peace that comes from faith and hope...and my persistence and determination to never give up hope...and it has blessed me immeasurably.

I am just so grateful. I know I have been saying this a lot lately, but I can't help it. Yes, I still get sad. Yes, I still wish I could go back in time and change things -- what I said or what I did. Yes, I love Jeremy -- now even more than ever. But even during these times of uncertainty and loneliness, I recognize that I am indeed not alone, and that Heavenly Father is there with me. Jesus Christ is there beside me. As one of my favorite poems so eloquently puts it, "My precious, precious child. You know that I love you and that I would never abandon you. During those times when you saw only one set of footprints, it was then that I carried you."

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