“Let Not Your Heart Be Troubled,” Ensign, July 2000, 57
In July 1989 our family moved to French Polynesia, where my husband had been called to preside over the Tahiti Papeete Mission. The change from the dry climate of Utah to humid Tahiti caused me some respiratory trouble, and six weeks after we arrived I developed bronchitis and then pneumonia complicated by pleurisy. I cracked a rib during a particularly violent spasm of coughing, and the pain was so intense I could hardly breathe.
“Madame Perrin, there seems to be another complication,” the doctor said after he examined my chest x-rays. He pointed to an opaque shadow on my upper right lung. “There’s a spot here that looks very suspicious. You’ll need to have some more x-rays taken.”
The next day I returned to the hospital for a test, and that night I knelt by the side of my bed and poured out my heart in prayer. I expressed that I had been called to assist my husband with his numerous responsibilities but that with poor health I would be a burden to him rather than an asset. I prayed for the opportunity and strength to do what the Lord had called me to do, and then I placed the problem in Heavenly Father’s hands and asked that His will be done.
As I got into bed, I reached for my scriptures hoping to find solace. I opened my quadruple combination at random, and this well-known, underlined passage in John 14:27 seemed to jump off the page: “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.”
I was overwhelmed with the feeling that the Lord was speaking directly to me. This was the answer to my heartfelt prayer. He was telling me to not worry, to be at peace. I literally felt the anxiety leave my body and be replaced with the calm, quiet knowledge that all would be well. That night, in spite of my persistent cough and the excruciating pain it caused, I was able to get some much-needed sleep.
“I don’t understand,” said the doctor the next day. He again looked over my original x-rays and compared them with the tomography. “There’s nothing here at all. That area of your lung is completely clear.”
I do not know why my life was spared. I realize that others in similar situations have not been healed despite exercising great faith; but I am grateful I was soon back on my feet and able to thrust in my sickle with all my might.