I am a second generation LDS. My parents have been members for 51 years. I didn't have a proper testimony until I was 14 years old when I began the Seminary program. Over the four years of Seminary I learned so much about the scriptures and the church that I couldn't fail to gain a testimony. I had a period of rebellion at the age of 19 and went inactive for about a year but realised that I didn't want to be away from the gospel and went back. I married a man who was a recent convert to the church, we were sealed in the temple and went on to have four sons born under the covenant. I served as Relief Society President and Primary President and through out all my testimony remained strong. I was sailing along in a state of content when life threw me a curve ball.
My fourth child was born premature with disabilities and my husband couldn't come to terms with it. He started an affair which eventually broke our marriage and my life apart. I thought that having a testimony would get me through but unfortunately Satan saw his opportunity and gave me problems with church members to contend with. I felt like I was being kicked when already down, crumbled under the pressure and stopped going to church. The longer I stewed on my problems and the longer I held onto my anger, the easier it got to stay away and before I knew it fifteen years had passed. I was remarried to a non- member/atheist, breaking the Word of Wisdom and not caring about the church.
Then along came a missionary couple, Elder and sister Barnley, who decided to reactivate me. I turned them away three times but they came back and something made me let them in. I know now it was the Spirit because they were my stepping stone to reactivation. They listened, encouraged and admonished me and eventually they walked with me, back into the church. I am so grateful to the Lord for sending them to me. I have been active, now, for over a year and am so happy. I love the gospel so much. I am glad that we have the act of repentance. I value that chance to get back to my Heavenly Father and my Saviour. I have tasted the bitter cup of sin and rejoiced in the washing away of it through repentance and dedicating my life to gospel living. I have had an outpouring of love from the members of the ward which has helped me and am now serving as a teacher to the youth in Sunday School. I love this calling and hope that I can influence them, through my experiences, to stay true to the gospel. I know my Saviour loves me, I have felt that love many times over the years and I am in awe that He continues to love me, with all my faults and failings. I will never take my testimony for granted again. I have learned the hard way that sitting on our laurels doesn't help when the world crashes in.
I know Joseph Smith was a true prophet of God and that he restored the one, true church on to the earth. I know my Saviour died for me and wants me to live with Him so I will try my best to be worthy of that gift. I know our prayers are heard and answered by a loving Father who wants the best for us. I have put it to the test and received a burning of the bosom that told me God lives and loves me. We must work every day at keeping strong and building our testimony and I hope I will never turn my face from the Lord again.