What If?

    “What If?” Liahona, Feb. 1998, 24

    What If?

    All my life I had been taught that the Church was true. When I decided to gain a testimony of my own, I thought I needed to approach things from a different angle than my teachers and friends did. So I asked: What if the gospel is not true? What if my well-meaning friends and parents have been misled? What if the Book of Mormon is a work of fiction? What if there is no living prophet today and families aren’t forever?

    As such questions filled my mind, darkness clouded my thoughts. I felt as if doors were closing inside me, and for an entire day I wandered around in a depressed stupor of thought, thinking and acting unkindly toward others.

    The next morning I realized I was getting nowhere. Then I remembered a seminary lesson I’d had on prayer. I knew that in Doctrine and Covenants 9:7–9 [D&C 9:7–9] there were some guidelines on getting answers. As I read these verses, I could see that I had asked the wrong questions. When I studied my questions out in my mind and in my heart, I sincerely believed the things I had been taught were true. So I prayed again, this time asking if my beliefs were right: Was I really a child of God? Was there a celestial kingdom? Was the priesthood the power of God?

    Light replaced darkness. The Spirit confirmed that my belief was not in vain. I felt as if doors were being flung open, and I could see things more clearly.

    I gained a desire to serve and to share my testimony. The Lord had heard and answered my sincere prayer. Now I know for myself that what I had believed all along was really true.

    Photograph by John Luke, posed by model