My whole life has been filled with experiences that have brought me closer to my savior, even the smallest experiences I don’t even remember. Even the times where I feel the Savior extremely close, I am surprised by how much closer I can get to him, and how much more I need to progress in my life.
“My beloved brothers and sisters, today is Easter Sunday. Although we should always remember (we promise in our weekly sacramental prayers that we will), nevertheless this is the most sacred day of the year for special remembrance of brotherly hands and determined arms that reached into the abyss of death to save us from our fallings and our failings, from our sorrows and our sins.” Jeffery R. Holland, Where Justice, Love, and Mercy Meet.
I am eternally grateful for my Savior, Jesus Christ, for all that he does for me and my family. There has not been a day that goes by without me thinking to myself; “I am so grateful that I can be with Ben and Will forever.” And all of that is to be thanked to our Heavenly Father for him sending his Son to us, and for Jesus Christ for him performing the most important event in eternity, the Atonement.
There are many events that we experience in our lives that bring us closer to God, and where we feel extremely close to the spirit. Many of them include temple work, where we either go through the temple for ourselves or others. When we are sealed to our eternal companions. In a hospital room where a new child is brought into the world, or even something as simple as family prayer, or a lesson in Sunday school. For me I have felt so close to the spirit during my pregnancy, even before we found out about Will’s problems. It is obvious to both Ben and I that this sweet little baby that has come into our lives is a special spirit that is constantly bearing witness of Christ to us, our families, and many friends.
Will’s purpose from the moment he became our son was to testify of Christ, and his atonement, and of his Resurrection. As J.R.R Tolken says in Will’s favorite movie; “Even the smallest person can change the course of the future.” Will’s body is not a perfect body, his head is deformed, and his brain has not developed properly. None of which could have been prevented. As Ben and I talked with the neurologist, she said to us; “Usually, fetuses with severe deformities such as these pass away early in development, and are mostly miscarriages, but this fetus has survived.” When she told us this, I thought of how much Will has brought Ben and I closer together, and both of our families closer together. He truly is a witness and disciple of Christ, and for that, I feel must testify of the truth of Jesus Christ and his Atonement.
“As one of His ordained witnesses, I declare this Easter morning that Jesus of Nazareth was and is that Savior of the world, the “last Adam,”6 the Author and Finisher of our faith, the Alpha and Omega of eternal life. “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive,” -Jeffery R. Holland.
The Resurrection of Christ is so extremely important to me, because I know that William will also be resurrected, and have a perfect body with a perfect head and brain unlike the one he has now that is deformed, underdeveloped, and misshapen. Just has Christ overcame death, so will each of us. Because Christ performed the eternal and wonderful Atonement, we are able to be made alive again and reunited with our loved ones once again. Because of Jesus Christ, this is not the end, and that gives me so much joy.
When I was about 5 to 6 weeks pregnant Ben and I decided to tell our parents. Around this time, my grandpa in Brazil was in the hospital and suffered a severe car crash that led to his death. Before he passed away, my mother asked my uncle to tell my grandpa that I was pregnant. When my grandpa was told this, he began to cry, and said to us; “it is a boy.” he soon passed away after that. When Ben and I found out Will was a boy, we felt impressed to name him after my grandpa, William Adroaldo Reidhead.
Here is a picture of my Grandma, Maria, who I was named after and who passed away years before my grandpa. And my grandpa, Adroaldo.
I wanted to share this story because ever since my grandpa and grandma passed away I have felt their spirits very close to my family. And I know that because of Christ’s atonement they will too be made alive just as Christ was on Easter morning. Feeling them close to Ben and I as we go through this hard trial with Will, has been a huge blessing to us, and only possible through Christ. Family is important to me, and I know that my family can be together forever, all of us, because of Christ’s selfless Atonement.
The fact that I can sleep well at night next to my eternal companion and know that everything is going to be made right as long as I endure to the end gives me purpose, it gives me hope, and it gives me happiness. The fact that I can break down some days and fall to my knees in prayer and be immediately comforted by the spirit gives me strength to keep moving, and accomplish those things in my life that I need to accomplish. One Sunday, Ben and I sat in sacrament meeting, and during the intermediate song we all stood to sing “How Great Thou Art” I felt the spirit extremely strong and would like to share this hymn to you because it explains how I feel this Easter.
“And when I think that God, His Son not sparing,
Sent him to die, I scarce can take it in,
That on the cross, my burden gladly bearing,
He bled and died to take away my sin.
When Christ shall come with shout of acclamation
And take me home, what joy shall fill my heart!
Then I shall bow in humble adoration,
And there proclaim, my God, how great Thou art.
Then Sings my soul, my Savior, God to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art!”
May I close with a cheesy quote again from Lord of The Rings? Doesn’t matter, I’m going to do it anyway.
“Frodo: I wish the ring had never come to me, I wish none of this had happened.
Gandalf: So do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us. There are other forces at work in this world, Frodo, besides the will of evil. Bilbo was meant to find the Ring. In which case, you were also meant to have it. And that is an encouraging thought.”
This quote has been a help for me, Ben and I wish all the time that our baby was normal just like our many friend’s babies. We wish this burden had never come upon us. But we were meant to have sweet William in our lives, and there are other people on both sides of the veil helping us along the way, and the fact that we have such a sweet, and special spirit as ours gives us a lot of encouragement. So Easter is a testimony that there is more than this life, and there is more than death. We will all overcome death just as Christ did that Easter morning when the tomb was empty.
Here are also some pictures because Easter is meant to be fun too!