Driven by Faith

“Driven by Faith,” Ensign, July 2013, 6


Driven by Faith

The author lives in North Carolina, USA.

I will never forget walking the grounds at Winter Quarters, Nebraska, USA, where pioneers had lived years before. The ground felt sacred, almost as if I were visiting an outdoor temple.

My eyes filled with tears, blurring my vision. I saw a statue but could not make out the figures. When I wiped away my tears, I saw a man and a woman whose faces were full of grief. As I looked closer, I saw the figure of an infant lying in a grave at their feet.

This sight filled me with so many emotions: sadness, anger, gratitude, and joy. I wanted to take away the pain those Saints felt, but I was grateful at the same time for what they had sacrificed for the gospel.

My experience at Winter Quarters helped me realize that Heavenly Father gives the gospel to His children and allows them the agency to do with it as they will. The parents of that baby could have chosen to take an easier course. Following the prophet and living the gospel required these pioneers to press forward even when it meant burying their child. But they chose to take the gospel into their lives and accepted their challenges. I learned that the Saints’ dedication to the gospel and their determination to press forward were driven by faith and hope—hope for a bright future and faith that the Lord knew them and could ease their pain.

Tragedy at Winter Quarters, by Avard Fairbanks © IRI