“Encircled in the Arms of His Love,” Ensign, Mar. 2008, 75
When he was only a year old, our son Nolan suffered a stroke related to complications from spinal meningitis. Now 14, he struggles with a low-pressure shunt, learning challenges, and paralysis of one side of his body.
Despite his rocky road, Nolan has surpassed our expectations. Every milestone he reaches brings us much joy. He has developed patience and a determination worthy of emulation.
My husband, Ryan, and I, along with our five other sons, have all grown spiritually from our experiences with Nolan. At times we get discouraged and worry about his future, but then we count our blessings, recognize the love and concern our Father in Heaven and His Son have for each of us, and remember a prayer that was answered when Nolan was six.
One evening when we were unsure how to handle Nolan’s challenges, my husband and I knelt to pray about his welfare. As we petitioned the Lord, we expressed particular concern about Nolan’s behavior as related to his perception of his self-worth. We sincerely asked for Nolan to feel the love of our Savior and know of his great worth as a child of God.
The next morning Nolan came directly into the kitchen, where I was cooking breakfast. Before breakfast he would usually play with his brothers or plop on the couch. But he seemed intent as he climbed a stool at the breakfast bar, looked up at me, and said, “I had a dream last night.”
I sensed his seriousness, and my interest was immediately piqued.
“Really?” I asked. “What happened in your dream?”
“Jesus was there,” Nolan replied simply, “and He held me.”
I have a testimony that our loving Father in Heaven hears and answers our prayers and that our Savior is our advocate with the Father. They know us individually. They are aware of our needs and our capabilities. They know how to succor us.
Moroni tells us, “If ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth … unto you. And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things” (Moroni 10:4–5). I have learned that this scripture pertains not only to obtaining a testimony of the Book of Mormon but also to any question for which we are sincerely seeking an answer. When we face challenges, heartache, and trials, our hearts are keenly sincere and our intent intensely genuine.
How grateful I am to be a member of the Savior’s Church, where I have learned much of His gospel through study, service, and the Holy Ghost. How grateful I am to know our Savior will help, comfort, and guide each of us. I know that we can all be encircled “in the arms of [His] love” (D&C 6:20) as we come unto Him.