by Marisa Sharpe
On a recent family reunion, the last morning was spent riding motorcycles. There were many people and only four motorcycles, so we were taking turns. When it was my turn, I rode off in the direction of an old railroad line. Similar to the Rails to Trails trail, the rails had been removed, and there was a gentle slope on either side of the long, straight track. On the top, there was some fine-grade gravel.
After I had ridden about 2.5 miles, I decided my turn was probably over and I should head back. However, there was no real place for me to turn around, and the track was narrow. I would have to go down the slope to have enough space to turn around and then get back up on top of the track.
After I turned around and as I was getting back on top of the track, my front wheel caught in the gravel, and I tipped the motorcycle over.
Fortunately, the bike didn't land on me, and I thought it would be as simple as lifting the bike up and getting back on. I bent down and grabbed the motorcycle and pulled. It. was. so. heavy. I took a deep breath and thought strong thoughts and pulled again. It was so heavy! I couldn't even move it a centimeter.
I began to consider my options. I could wait for someone to realize I had been gone for a long time and come looking for me, but no one knew which direction I had gone. I could walk back and get help, but that would take a long time, and I knew others were waiting for a turn.
I was completely alone in a remote part of Idaho. I felt I had no choice but to try again and somehow dig in my heels more. The third time I attempted to lift the motorcycle, I actually felt the motorcycle become lighter! It was still very heavy and I still had to pull with all my strength, but it was possible! I did it. I got back on, started the engine, and rode back to my family.
I know this is how the Atonement of Jesus Christ works in our lives. Our burdens are heavy to bear, and sometimes we can't lift them on our own. Some burdens come from choices we have made, and we have to suffer the consequences. Some burdens are from choices others have made, and we are affected by their behavior and choices.
If we work with all our might, the Lord can make the burden lighter. It may still be heavy, but we will be able to bear it. Maybe we will get stronger, or maybe the burden will become lighter, but through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, we will be able to do it!
I'm grateful to have experienced this miracle, and I love my Savior and need His help so much to lift the motorcycles in my life. I'm grateful for the Atonement of Jesus Christ and what it means to me.