“When I Feel Stuck,” Ensign, January 2019
One winter while I was driving home from a wedding reception for several hours in the middle of the night, the snowy weather became frighteningly intense. I was driving through a canyon, with 30 icy miles (48 km) stretched between me and my home.
Almost instantly, it seemed, the road got slicker, the night sky darker, my eyes heavier, and the falling snow much thicker. Having foolishly forgotten to put my mother’s sport-utility vehicle into four-wheel drive, I realized there was little traction, but that thought arrived too late. I completely lost all control of the vehicle and began sliding across the deserted road. It was as if the car were on ice skates, gliding recklessly across both lanes like some novice figure skater. I remember praying aloud, but I felt so panicked that all I could manage to get out was, “Heavenly Father, please help!”
Suddenly the car spun, making two 360-degree turns in the road before sliding over 100 feet (30 m) along the edge into the deep snow. I was in no obvious danger and was grateful to have not been harmed, but I was alone. And I was stuck.
It was 2:00 a.m. The lack of passing cars and the cold air left me feeling utterly hopeless. I grew frustrated by my failed attempts to get the car back on the road. Its back end was wedged entirely into a snowbank, and even as I hit the gas repeatedly, the car would not budge.
Fortunately, a police officer happened to drive by shortly after the accident. Even though he had a thick towing rope, his little car simply was not strong enough to pull the SUV from the snowbank. He waited with me while I called my father in desperation. Dad assured me that he would soon be there to help, bringing with him his strong pickup truck.
The more minutes that passed and the colder it got, the more apparent it became to me that my dad was the only one I knew who had what I needed. He was the only one who could get me out of this situation. Words are inadequate to express the relief and gratitude I experienced when my father finally arrived in the dead of the night in his truck. He did not waste any time before attaching the officer’s towing rope and smoothly pulling my car out of that snowbank.
On that dark, cold night in a nearly deserted canyon, my father brought to me what I needed most. With his truck, he pulled me from a dark place when I was quite literally stuck. With unbounded love and concern, he saved me in a way that I could not save myself.
Throughout my life, there have been times when I have felt hopelessly stuck. I think of trials that seemed to have no end. I think of bad habits and hopeless ruts and shattered dreams. I think of disappointments, failed attempts, hardships, unanswered questions, and circumstances I couldn’t change. I think of mistakes—mistakes that left me feeling there was no way out. I think of personal weakness. I think of depression too heavy to shake. I think of loneliness. I think of paralyzing grief and the unavoidable heartache that is just a part of life.
Then I think of Jesus Christ and His Atonement.
I think of a life lived entirely for us. I think of His mercy and kindness, His miracles and His love. I think of Gethsemane and Calvary, where pain of every kind left Him crying out. I think of compassion and perfect empathy and His gentle hand to heal our every wound. Because of His infinite Atonement, the Savior knows and has exactly what we need when we feel stuck. He alone can help us.
Said Alma to his son Shiblon, “There is no other way or means whereby man can be saved, only in and through Christ” (Alma 38:9).
His love and tender care for each of us impels Him to rescue us. He has said, “I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you” (John 14:18).
At times, the adversary would have me question whether Christ really can pull me out when I am stuck. In those moments, it’s as if I can hear the Savior asking me in love and compassion, “What makes you think that I can’t?”
Just as my father came to my rescue and pulled me from a dark place, the Savior also comes when we feel spiritually stuck. His is a glorious light when all around us is dark. Jesus Christ—the Son of God, the Savior of the world—can pull us out. He has what we need, and His saving grace will never fail us.