“How Could I Feel the Spirit Again?,” Liahona, Oct. 2022.
Even during my darkest times, I have always felt peace in my trials through the Holy Ghost. But that changed when I underwent treatment for chronic pain that left me bedridden for two months.
The pain lessened after my treatment ended, but I began to struggle with depression. At the same time, it seemed to me that I had lost my ability to feel the Spirit.
For six months, I felt abandoned and desperately longed to feel the Spirit again. My healing was long and painful, which seemed even more daunting without the Spirit.
I met with my bishop, who explained that depression sometimes masks the Spirit so that we cannot feel it. His counsel comforted me, and a priesthood blessing from my husband gave me added strength as I waited hopefully to feel the Holy Ghost again.
General conference had always been a source of spiritual strength for me, but during the opening session of the April 2019 general conference, I felt nothing. That changed during the next session when a combined choir from Brigham Young University sang “Jesus, Once of Humble Birth.”1
The lyrics and the imagery of Jesus Christ as a lamb softened my heart. I realized that a wall of anger, depression, and false feelings of abandonment had masked my ability to feel the Spirit. A fortress of darkness had surrounded me, making it impossible for the Spirit to enter my heart. When the choir sang the second verse, that fortress began to crumble.
Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles followed the hymn with his talk “Behold the Lamb of God.”2 With the added power of his words, a love for the Savior and Heavenly Father washed over me.
Many impediments can hinder us from feeling the Spirit, but we can work through these barriers with help from Heavenly Father and His Son. Jesus Christ perfectly understands my struggles. Out of love for us and His Father, “He groaned in blood and tears.”3
Heavenly Father knows what will bring us comfort, and He knows when to bless us for our greatest spiritual growth.