I believe in Christ.
I know He lives. I know He loves us. I know it, because I have lived it.
I will never forget the day I learned of His love for me. Like the man who had fallen among thieves on the road to Jericho, my soul had been marred by people on my journey that I had the misfortune of encountering and trusting. I had been left on the side of the road, and passed by.
One night, as tears stained the pages of my journal, I poured out my heart in written prayer, pleading with God that, if there was anything about me worth saving to please, save me.
The very next day, a miracle happened, and my life was changed forever.
It was people who hurt me, but it was my Savior who reached through the darkness that was left behind, and rescued me. And I will never forget it.
Jesus Christ is the Good Samaritan. When we reach out to Him, He will not pass us by. I know He hears our cries for help. He hears our prayers—every one of them. He loves us with a perfect love that is sweet above all that is sweet, and pure above all that is pure. He will strengthen us, bind up our wounds, straighten our broken bones, lift us up and heal us. As Dieter F. Uchtdorf once said, “If you will only lift up your heart to the Savior of the world, He will find you. He will rescue you. He will lift you up and place you on His shoulders. He will carry you home.”
Dieter F. Uchtdorf tells the story of the city of Dresden. During World War II, “Massive firestorms, caused by thousands of tons of explosives, swept through Dresden, destroying more than 90 percent of the city and leaving little but rubble and ash in their wake. In a very short time, the city once nicknamed the ‘Jewel Box’ was no more. Erich Kästner, a German author, wrote of the destruction, ‘In a thousand years was her beauty built, in one night was it utterly destroyed.’”
Many years later, Dieter F. Uchtdorf returned to Dresden. The city had been rebuilt, and was once again a “Jewel Box.” He visited the Lutheran church Frauenkirche, the Church of Our Lady. It had been built in the 1700’s, but it had been left as nothing more than a pile of rubble in the aftermath of World War II.
“For many years it remained that way,” he said, “until finally it was determined that the Frauenkirche would be rebuilt. Stones from the destroyed church had been stored and cataloged and, when possible, were used in the reconstruction. Today you can see these fire-blackened stones pockmarking the outer walls. These ‘scars’ are not only a reminder of the war history of this building but also a monument to hope—a magnificent symbol of man’s ability to create new life from ashes… If mortal hands can transform rubble and ruins into a beautiful house of worship, then we can have confidence and trust that our loving Heavenly Father can and will rebuild us. His plan is to build us into something far greater than what we were—far greater than what we can ever imagine.”
This is what our Savior has done for us. This is what Easter is all about. This is what He made possible through His Atonement. Our Beloved Friend suffered every single sorrow, every wound, every pain, every feeling of betrayal, every tear we’ve shed in our agony. He has literally walked our path. He has worn our battered, broken shoes. He knows exactly what you are going through right now. He knows what you have overcome. When you feel like no one knows what you’re going through, He does. When you feel like no one understands, He understands you perfectly.
And He absolutely adores you.
He did all of this because He loves you. He wants to help you make things right. He wants you to come Home.
I know this, because I have felt it. I have felt His love for me. It is a light that burns brightly, illuminating the mind, and can only be felt, for no words can adequately describe it. And I know that if He can love someone like me, then He absolutely loves you.
You are not, nor are you ever, lost to Him. You are never too broken or too far gone.
I know that sometimes the storms rage on for so very long. They can seem endless, and our prayers can seem unanswered or unheard. But I promise that when we reach out to Him, our prayers are never ignored, and He will answer. He will send angels to strengthen us through the storms, and He will guide us to safety. I know He lives. I know His Atonement is real. He broke the bands of death, that it might have no sting. That despair might be replaced with hope. That we might live again with our families for eternity. He loves us so much that He died for us, and rose again on the third day with healing in His wings. And I know—I know—that He will heal us.