An excerpt from The Peacegiver, published by Deseret Book.

The light slowly faded from around them, and Rick found himself, as he was before, sitting at his kitchen table.

He began to weep.

These tears were different, both in volume and feeling, from the torrential tears of self-pity and anger on the night Carol asked him to leave. They were rather the tears of awakening-cleansing, purifying tears. He was neither angry with Carol nor sorry for himself. On the contrary, he was beginning to feel sorry for Carol because of his own hard-heartedness. The pain he was feeling was bitter, to be sure, but he could taste a tinge of sweetness in it as well, for the tears were expelling his bitterness and giving room for the sweet feelings he had once known.

“So how can I get out of the mess I’m in, Grandpa? How can I feel about Carol as I used to feel about her? How can I throw off these chains that hold me?”

“You are beginning to already.”


“Yes. Can’t you feel it?”

“Feel what?”

“Sorrow for how you have been toward Carol. Humility as you are beginning to realize that you lack the ability, yourself, to crawl out of the hole you find yourself in. A desire to repent, not just of unrighteous acts, but of an unrighteous heart. Openness to whatever may be required of you. Do you feel these things, Ricky?”

As Rick contemplated his grandfather’s comments, he felt a soothing warmth inside him, like the outer rings of warmth one feels when approaching a campfire on a very cold night. As on such nights, Rick longed to move closer to the fire.

“Yes, Grandpa, I do feel those things.” And he sobbed all the harder at the realization.

“Oh, the wonder of God!” Grandpa Carson exclaimed, “and his goodness and mercy!”

“Gracious Father in Heaven,” he continued, lifting his voice heavenward, “we thank thee for thy loving-kindness and tender mercies. We don’t merit it, and never have, and yet still thou dost bless us with thy Spirit. We thank thee for this cleansing blessing, and approach thee in meekness and humility, and with deep gratitude.

“I love Ricky, dear Father. He is precious to me. Please sustain him in his pain that it may work to his salvation. May his heart break unto thee. May his contrition be true, and deep, and full. May he descend to the depths of humility. May thou show him the extent of his sins.

“Father, mayest thou put into him a new heart, according to thy promise to the meek and the lowly. Mayest thou take away the stony heart out of his flesh and grant unto him the pure heart and the peace that are promised to those who come unto thee. May he remember Abigail, and be able to extend mercy to Nineveh. May thy Spirit enter his and lead him in thy paths.

“Please be as well with Carol and the children. They are hurting and need thy sustaining hand. Bind up their wounds. Succor them in their sorrows. Hear the cries of the multitudes who hope for them and pray to thee on their behalf. Please, Father, I pray to thee with all the energy of my soul that thou wilt join this family together. Awaken within them the love they have known. Bring them back into each other’s arms, and make their thoughts and feelings for one another sweet and holy.

“Dearest Father, we offer these yearnings in the name of thy Son. Through his mercies and merits we approach thee. And for his infinite atonement we praise thy holy name forever.”