A Mother’s Covenant
A young mother lay deathly ill with a burning fever. It had begun as a heavy cold which caused a severe cough and progressed from there. Every exertion was made to help her. Doctors came and ministered the best they could, but the final diagnosis was tuberculosis, and she was going to die. During the sickness, her mother had attended to her with much anxiety, yet to no avail. She only grew weaker and weaker until even the slightest sound in the room was painful. In this agonizing condition, she began to contemplate her own death. Was she ready to die? Her answer was no. She did not know the ways of Christ and there seemed to be a dark and lonesome chasm between her and the Almighty.
It was while she lay pondering these things that her husband came in and taking her by the hand, began to weep. “Oh…, my wife, my wife,” he wept, “You must die. The doctors have all given you up and all say you cannot live.”
As darkness fell upon the room, her voice lifted to heaven, begging and pleading that she might be allowed to live to bring up her children and be a comfort to her husband. All through the night her mind moved between heaven and earth. At one point, she contemplated heaven and heavenly things and then she would return to those she loved on earth—her babes and her companion.
Somewhere during that difficult night her soul found resolve and she entered into a covenant with the Almighty that if he would let her live, she would serve him to the best of her abilities and would bring up her children in light and truth. Finally, there came a voice saying to her, “Seek, and ye shall find; knock and it shall be opened. Let your heart be comforted; ye believe in God, believe also in me.”
Moments later her mother entered the room and exclaimed, “You are better!” To which she found the strength to speak for the first time in days, “Yes, mother, the Lord will let me live, if I am faithful to the promise which I made to him to be a comfort to my mother, my husband, and my children.”
From that point on she grew stronger until her body was well, but her soul was troubled, as she could find no one who could teach her with authority the ways of life and salvation. With steeled determination she kept her promise to God and her family, and not only did she find the truth but she raised an exceptional family that would change the world. The year was 1802, the place was Randolph, Vermont, and the tender ailing young mother was Lucy Mack Smith.
Source: History of Joseph Smith by his Mother, Lucy Mack Smith, p. 33-35
For more on the life of Lucy Mack Smith go to http://historyofthesaints.org/product/lucy-mack-smith-first-mother-of-the-restoration-dvd/