I was twelve. My family had momentarily left my hometown for a one year sabbatical. I was chubby, shy, and a new girl. I remember lying in my bed one night feeling low. I prayed to God for help to feel better. Suddenly, an overwhelming warmth spread through my body, unlike anything that I had ever felt before. I knew that God loved me, that I had more potential than I could ever possibly imagine, that I was divine and important.
I grew up Mormon and had been loved by my parents and the Church; the Church was comfortable to me. However, that was the moment that I knew for myself God was there. I also knew the Church was true as it was the teachings of my parents and many Church leaders that had led me to pray to God that night.
Many things have happened to me since I was twelve. Yet I can still feel, off and on, this amazing love that overwhelms me and awes me. It makes everything ok, even when I and everything around me seem permanently broken. It makes me see everyone surrounding me as divine beings, worthy of God’s love, worth the death of God’s beloved Son. It makes me want to keep the commandments because they are right. It shows me all the beauty in the world, from a thousand different sources, in and out of the Church. It makes me excited and happy. And on the very worse days, when the bottom of the world seems to have fallen out, it is the net that catches me. I’m not always happy, but I always know underneath, in the pit of my being, that God is there and that He loves me.