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My experiences with the Atonement


Testimonies and Information about the LDS Church

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  #1  
November 12th, 2007, 01:01 AM
Brittanie's Avatar just me
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Littleton, CO
Posts: 43,573
In August of 2005 a home pregnancy test confirmed that my husband and I were expecting our first child. I was ecstatic. I had been wanting my own baby since I was seven years old and my youngest brother was born. I was more than thrilled to finally be fulfilling what my patriarchal blessing made very clear was my purpose for coming to this earth. I was going to be a mother, and I was even due on Mother's Day the next year. I naturally assumed it was going to be easy. My mother had had a relatively easy time with her pregnancies. She wasn't really sick at all, so when I started having extreme morning sickness, I was very surprised. At about 10 weeks gestation I was admitted to the emergency room for hyperemesis gravidarum and put on an IV.

The day before that, however, I had one of the most powerful moments of understanding concerning the Atonement that I have ever received. I was in the bathroom, laying on the floor. I had been sick every hour, so I had pretty much decided that going back to the couch was a waste of time since I would just have to get back up and go back into the bathroom again. I was telling Heavenly Father that there was no way I could possibly survive being so sick, and since I was going to die, I wanted it over quickly instead of the slow agonizing end I was enduring.

It was then that I realized that I had never before had to really sacrifice my body and my health for another person. There, laying on the bathroom floor in front of the toilet, I was closer to the Savior than I had ever been in my life. I was, just then, the closest I had ever been to truly experiencing something like what He had in Gethsemane. And like Jesus Christ was strengthened in His trial, so was I.

Little did I know, however, that my trial would just get more difficult. On May 1, 2006--13 days before I was due--my doctor confirmed the little girl I was carrying inside me no longer had a heartbeat. My baby had died. In that moment, my world fell apart. I felt like my God, my Father, had truly abandoned me. May 2, the next day, labor was induced so I could deliver my sleeping angel. Again I was in Gethsemane, only the agony then was more than just physical. I knew that all of my pain and suffering was for nothing. I had never felt so betrayed. Nine months of sickness, and several hours of labor was in vain.

It would take a couple of days before I realized how close I had come to my Savior again. Feeling that betrayal, and the grief of not having my daughter with me, I realized I had a small widow into how He must feel when we break those covenants we have made, and when we don't accept what He has offered us. The difference was, though, that while I will receive my daughter back into my arms again, when we walk away from our Savior it is a willful denial. I promised myself that I wouldn't ever force Him to feel that.

Months later our stake president spoke to our ward, and his words struck a cord with me. He defined the word "vain" as "something that does not fulfill expectations." He explained that when we are baptized, we take upon ourselves the name of Christ, and agree to keep His commandments. We agree to stand for righteousness at all times. So when we do not live up to those commandments, we are not fulfilling the expectations. We have taken His name in vain.

I had never considered the second commandment as one that really applied to me. What I mean is that I have always used clean language. I have always used my Heavenly Father's name reverentially, so I never thought of it as a commandment that I had to "work on." But that day, in that sacrament meeting, hearing those words I realized that every time I failed to read my scriptures daily, or pray daily, or pay my tithes and offerings, or go to all my church meetings I was, in fact, breaking that commandment. I was rejecting the sacrifice my Savior had made for me. I was breaking that promise I had made to myself after the delivery of my sweet angel baby.

I still struggle with this, but the beautiful thing about the Atonement is that it gives us a continual chance to change who we are and what we do. The Atonement gives us continual hope for the future: hope that we can we can do better and become more and more like Him. The Atonement gives our Savior hope as well; hope that we will accept it and we can return to Him someday, just like I will have my daughter returned to me. It makes separation of any kind temporary. We just have put our Hand in His and walk forward regardless of what lies before us.


In October of 2006 I became pregnant again, and again I got a glimpse of what the Savior must feel. Even though I knew I could possibly suffer as much as I did before, and again leave the hospital with empty arms, I was willing to take the chance, just as the Savior is willing at every moment to take the chance on each of us. I hope that He will have the kind of joy in me, when I finally return to His arms, that I had when the doctor laid my beautiful healthy baby girl, Erin, on my chest. I hope that He will have the same kind of joy in me that I know I will have when my angel Cora is finally given back to my arms. I work and pray for that each and every day.
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  #2  
November 12th, 2007, 06:54 AM
Butter's Avatar Heather the Mama Duk
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: San Antonio TX
Posts: 28,853
Brittanie, that is absolutely beautiful! You should definitely submit it to the Ensign.
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~Heather, wife to Jamie (15 years; June 5, 1998) and mom to
Ani - 14 (February 15, 2000), Cameron - 12 (October 3, 2001),
Fritz - 7 (July 11, 2006), and Adrian - 5 (June 19, 2008)
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  #3  
November 12th, 2007, 07:59 AM
twiceinabluemoon's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: the Great Basin
Posts: 1,462
Thank-you for sharing. For bringing a new perspective. I also think you should submit it. It is beautiful.

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  #4  
November 12th, 2007, 01:45 PM
Mega Super Mommy
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 1,175
I have tears. The story of Cora alone always makes me cry and brings up so many emotions w/Mya. Our stories are so close that this hits home in a huge way. Thank you for sharing this, Brittanie.
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  #5  
November 12th, 2007, 07:45 PM
Brittanie's Avatar just me
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Littleton, CO
Posts: 43,573
Okay, I sent it in and got an email back saying it's been forwarded to the editors for review. Cross your fingers ladies!
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  #6  
November 12th, 2007, 09:23 PM
.erin.'s Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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That was beautiful! I am so glad you sent it in. It did not take long until I had tears running down my face.
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  #7  
November 12th, 2007, 11:14 PM
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My fingers are crossed!!! That would be so exciting!
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  #8  
November 13th, 2007, 06:42 AM
Butter's Avatar Heather the Mama Duk
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: San Antonio TX
Posts: 28,853
Awesome! My fingers are crossed for you. I hope they print it.
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~Heather, wife to Jamie (15 years; June 5, 1998) and mom to
Ani - 14 (February 15, 2000), Cameron - 12 (October 3, 2001),
Fritz - 7 (July 11, 2006), and Adrian - 5 (June 19, 2008)
Smaller on the Outside

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  #9  
November 13th, 2007, 10:20 AM
Bug-n-Ed's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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Thank you so much for sharing that! I may not come down to this forum very often. I know I'm not too active here, but I really needed to hear your words. I really appreciate it.
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  #10  
November 13th, 2007, 01:48 PM
shellybell57's Avatar Platinum Supermommy
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That story is beautiful Brittanie, I hope that it gets printed in the Ensign. Thank you for sharing it.
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  #11  
November 13th, 2007, 05:30 PM
donomama
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That's wonderful. I really think you should submit it.
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  #12  
November 13th, 2007, 10:59 PM
Brittanie's Avatar just me
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Littleton, CO
Posts: 43,573
Quote:
Thank you so much for sharing that! I may not come down to this forum very often. I know I'm not too active here, but I really needed to hear your words. I really appreciate it.[/b]
Thank you for saying that. I had been thinking about posting it for a while, but really didn't know if I could handle typing it all out (when I get emotional, things stop making sense). However, I really felt the urge to post, and I'm glad that there was a reason. I guess that really was a prompting.

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