In the last couple of months, I have struggled with the thought that I had family and friends that were holding hope that I again would come into full fellowship with the church, meaning holding a temple recommend. I believe that I will never return to full fellowship within the LDS church. I cannot abide by the requirements which the LDS church expects of people, to hold a temple recommend, as per the statements I made above. I don't believe that any man has a right to put themselves between me and my relationship with Christ, even with my repentance. Because I knew that there were people in my life, who were hoping that things would change and because I knew that I would never be able to go back ultimately, I made the decision, with my husband and God, to turn in the resignation. It was still hard for me, once I made the decision, so I prayed and asked God to give me a witness. That night, Saturday, I had a dream. The Lord speaks to me through dreams. I dreamt that I was in a war. It was the middle ages, and there was this big castle that I was in, that I was trying to get out of. This was the war. At the end of the dream, I was standing outside of the castle, free. I just stared in amazement at this big building that I was desperately trying to get out of. As I looked, I fell to my knees, raised my arms above my head and praised my God, My Lord, and Savior. I praised in a way that I have never been able to, but have always wanted. I was free, and my Lord freed me. I knew, as I immediately woke up that that was my witness. I knew what I had to do. I had to be free to praise, worship and live like my Father in Heaven desired of me and I knew that I would not be able to do that in the church, at least not without fear of being excommunicated. I woke up Sunday morning and wrote the resignation letter, which was signed by both my husband and I. I went to church that morning, to give it to the bishop. As I was there, I wondered again if I was doing the right thing. I knew that this would upset many people in my life, so I wanted to make sure it was right. I sat and listened to the lessons. One of the lessons was given by the branch president himself. He is a good man, who desires to follow Christ. He had to leave early, so I knew that if I was going to do it, I was going to have to be ready to leave the class after he left. Not wanting to create a lot of noise, I ended up walking out before he did, so that I could catch him coming out of the class. As I waited, I was able to listen to a talk that was being given in the next wards sacrament meeting. It was about Christ, and how sometimes He asks us to sacrifice. We cannot attain unto Christ, without being willing to sacrifice. As I was out in the hallway waiting, I spoke with Christ. I told Him that I was scared about what this would do to my family and my various relationships. He stated He understood. He asked me if this wouldn't allow me to have more honest conversations with those important people in my life, which maybe this will allow for an openness that I hadn't had before. I told Him that I could understand how that would work, and that was what I wanted. I told Him that I would follow Him and do anything that He asked because I knew that with Him, I would have more family than I could ask for, more peace than I have ever experienced and more joy than I could ever imagine. Right as I said that, the woman giving the talk in the other ward, stated, "The windows of heaven will be opened unto you." I knew this was God speaking to me. Shortly after the Branch President came out and I was able to give him the letter. I felt a lot of peace.
I know this post is long, but my Savior has asked that I become a witness for Him and for that reason there is another part of my story that I must share.
A little over a year ago, I was called to witness for a very dear friend of mine, in his "court of love." Because of this and the direction I knew I was heading in, I felt that I too would end up with the possibility of excommunication. One day, about a year ago, I was feeling extremely anxious. I did not understand what was happening, as I am normally an anxious person. I decided that instead of taking care of the things that needed to be taken care of, I would take the time to understand what the Lord wanted of me. I sat down and immediately knew what was causing the anxiety. I had a lot on my mind, and the possibility of excommunication was on my mind, more than I had thought initially. I sat down to write down what I would say to these men, who I figured I would have to face at some point. I started writing my letter to these men as if I were speaking to them. I started writing and one page into testifying of my Savior Jesus Christ and His love for all of us, a vision opened up in front of me. Mind you; I have not locked the door, and I have kids all around me at certain points, but my focus is on this letter and the vision that I was experiencing. I was taken to the high council room, where I had months before been a witness to a man, who was excommunicated and should not have been. I was reading my letter, which at the time, I was writing. I looked around the room, seeing each man's face and wondering if they even cared what I was saying. Some were smiling, others were staring into space and others seemed to be pondering on what I was saying. I turned to my paper again and kept reading. As I looked up again, I looked to the back of the room. There standing in the back was a man that I immediately recognized as the Savior, my Savior. He was smiling. I continued reading, thinking that he was happy with what I was saying. I then stopped, I thought about what I was doing. The Savior was standing a few feet away from me, and here I was reading a paper about Him. He is who I had been seeking, and here He was. I wondered if anybody else was seeing Him. I wondered if I was the only one. I wanted to go to Him. I knew that I would look silly as it was apparent, no one else had seen Him, but I put my papers down and immediately started walking towards Him. He met me halfway. I fell to my knees in awe of being in His presence. I immediately saw His bare feet. I saw the nail prints in His feet, and I kissed them. He touched me with his hands. I saw them and again the nail prints in His hands. He touched my head and spoke to me. He said, "I am with you always." With those words, the vision closed. I have desired to recreate that in the last year, but I have not been able to. I know what I saw was true. I testify at this time that He lives. That He loves all and that His desire is to come to us. I have sought for this my entire life. I have not understood the significance of this vision until yesterday, Sunday night, after I resigned. My husband and I wanted to watch a movie, and as much as I didn't want to watch a dramatic movie, I felt led to watching Risen. *SPOILER ALERT* There is a part at the end when Christ has disappeared. His apostles are desperately seeking for Him. There is a great noise, and they see Him afar off. He speaks to them. He tells them that it is up to them now, to be witnesses and to testify of Him. My heart burned within me like it never had before, but before he leaves them, He tells them, "I am with you, ALWAYS." The spirit hit me with such force that I can no longer deny the importance of that experience a year ago. I know what I have seen and heard. I am humbled that the Lord would bless me with such a vision, but I am in complete awe of His love. I testify this to be true, in the name of my Savior Jesus Christ.