“Did I Really Know?” Ensign, Aug. 2008, 73
After an eventful evening in Australia in 1998, my best mate asked if I could give him a lift. On our way to his home, our conversation turned to our basic beliefs. He was an atheist, and I was a Latter-day Saint. I had always known that there was a God; he had always believed that there was no God.
That evening I did something I had never done before. Just before I dropped off my friend, I told him I know that God lives, that Jesus is our Savior, and that Joseph Smith saw Them in vision.
I had often talked about these things with him, but I had never told him that I knew them to be true. I realized, however, that if I were to leave him with a lasting impression, I would have to leave him with my testimony of these things.
As he opened the car door, he shook my hand and said, “Hey, man, that’s cool. We all need to be firm in our beliefs.”
The problem, however, is that I didn’t know—not really. At the time, it felt right to say those things, but I had never received a spiritual confirmation of their truthfulness.
I had a 20-minute drive home. Those 20 minutes changed my life. As I reviewed our conversation, I started to think about my life and the direction I was headed. While I was thinking, the hymn “I Know That My Redeemer Lives” came into my mind and penetrated my soul. I started to sing aloud:
I know that my Redeemer lives.
What comfort this sweet sentence gives!
He lives, he lives, who once was dead.
He lives, my ever-living Head.1
As I sang, tears came to my eyes as the Spirit witnessed to me the truthfulness of those words and confirmed that my testimony was true. I realized then that a testimony can be found in the bearing of it.2
I will never forget the Spirit witnessing to me the truthfulness of my testimony. I know that my Redeemer lives because the Spirit witnessed it to my soul—a witness I was happy to share a short time later as a full-time missionary.