“A Life Full of Joy,” For the Strength of Youth, Dec. 2022.
Caroline M. from Tennessee, USA, loves to spread joy. “I like it when people are happy,” she says. “My purpose in life is to help people know how much Jesus loves them. My purpose here on earth is to spread hope, happiness, and love.”
Caroline enjoys learning the gospel of Jesus Christ, living what she learns, and sharing the gospel with others. She knows the gospel brings great joy because she has experienced it for herself.
Caroline finds joy in the gospel of Jesus Christ because “it brings so much love to everyone.” She says: “I follow Jesus Christ by being obedient. He is the source of peace and happiness and love—that is who Jesus Christ is to me. He died for us and paid for our sins so that we can be like Him.”
Seminary is one way Caroline has been able to learn the gospel, and it’s been a good experience for her. “I love early morning seminary. I’m a morning person.” The students come to her house since her mom is the seminary teacher. “Not a lot of people are members of the Church where I live. But a few members go to my high school and come to seminary with me.”
She’s enjoyed studying the Old Testament in seminary this year. One of her favorite stories is the account of the Creation in the book of Genesis. “I love reading about the Creation because it shows Jesus created this world for me. It makes me really happy to think that He did that for me.”
Living the gospel also brings Caroline great joy. She loves Jesus Christ and wants to follow Him, which helped her to understand the importance of being baptized. “I knew I needed to obey God’s commandments, that I needed to make covenants with Him and follow the right path.”
By being baptized, she knew she’d be following the right path—the path Jesus showed us. For her, being baptized “felt so amazing.” Through her desire to make and keep covenants and her desire to serve others and bring them joy, she shows she wants to follow Jesus Christ.
Another way that Caroline experiences the joy of the gospel often is through Church activities. She loves going to Young Women classes and activities because of the happiness she finds there. “The Young Women make me smile and laugh.”
She also enjoys going to Young Women camp. “When I’m at Young Women camp, everyone is around me and I can feel the Spirit. It reminds me of when I was baptized.”
Caroline also experiences the joy of the gospel in her everyday life. “Every time I play the piano or the guitar, every time I ask God to help someone, whenever I’m lonely, whenever I’m listening to uplifting music—that all shows me that the Savior loves me because I can hear Him.”
When Caroline was at Young Women camp, she bore testimony of the fact that she is a daughter of God, that He has a purpose for her in this life, and that her purpose is to bring joy and love to others. “A lot of people told me how much they loved my testimony.”
One special thing about this particular testimony was that everyone could clearly hear her and understand what she was saying. This made Caroline happy since that is not always the case. Caroline has Down syndrome, and she says it’s common for people to have a hard time understanding everything a person with Down syndrome says.
The Spirit was strong as she bore her testimony, and afterward many people said that hearing Caroline’s testimony was one of the most sacred experiences of their lives. She knew the Spirit clearly confirmed the truth of what she was saying.
Caroline has learned for herself that serving others brings joy! The Holy Ghost has helped her to feel the joy of the gospel and the joy of following Jesus Christ, and she wants others to experience that same feeling. By spreading happiness and love to others, she brings the Spirit into their lives. And by sharing what brings her joy, she invites them to come unto Christ.