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True Police Stories

"Courage is the ability to move; when all around you are frozen in fear
and no one would blame you if you did nothing at all." Capt. Click. Phx. PD

My Name is Julie Jeppsen

Taken from the book Think About it... for your reading convenience

I am the wife of Officer Sam Jeppsen. Though, I’m not sure if the words husband and wife really describe what we are to each other. In Genesis, Adam is speaking of Eve and he says, “This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh.” The Lord then instructs Adam, “Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother and shall cleave unto his wife and they shall be one flesh.”

After twenty-seven years of marriage and lots of ups and downs, I think we are finally beginning to realize what the Lord means when He tells us to become one. We really are each other’s best friend. We would rather be with each other than anyone else. We have gotten to the point where we really guard our time together and try not to let anything else interfere. Our time together is precious. I really feel that it takes Sam to make me complete and he feels that way about me. When he walks into the room, my heart still flutters. I get excited going on dates with him and his jokes still make me giggle. I love him more now than ever before and I know I’ll love him even more tomorrow. I can’t imagine spending my life without him much less my eternity. I am so thankful for the gospel in my life. I am so thankful for my temple marriage that gives me my eternity with Sam. Do you think that is what Adam means by, “Bone of my bone, and flesh of my flesh?” Do you think that is what Heavenly Father means when He says, “They shall be one flesh?”

To our Father in Heaven, life is eternal. Why wouldn’t His commandments be?

I haven’t always been a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I grew up in the Baptist Church. My parents have always loved the Lord. I remember going to church every Sunday when I was a little girl and we never ate a meal without first blessing our food. As children, we were taught to say our prayers every night before we climbed into bed.

When I was a baby, my dad was called to serve in the Navy during the Korean War. While he was away, my mother and I stayed with my mother’s family in Lehi, Arizona. During this time, some dear friends of my grandparents came over and taught them about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I think the teachings would have required them to make too many changes in their lives. For that or whatever reason, they passed it by. My mother though, was very interested and started writing to my dad about the gospel. My dad has always been a very religious man. On October 23, 1954, in one of his letters to my mother, he wrote, “...Most of these guys use the argument, ‘Heck, your wife will never know.’ But your sins will always catch up with you for God knows.”

On Thanksgiving Day, November 25th, 1954, from a ship named the USS Gardners Bay, stationed off the Korean coast line, again my dad wrote, “Even though I have so many things to be thankful for, Darling, there were still many things lacking this Thanksgiving Day. Most of all the absence of you and Julie hurt me the most. And secondly, we had no church services on this ship. And that was the original purpose of Thanksgiving Day, to give thanks to God for all the many blessings of the past year. The day was hardly observed at all here on board ship. I made up for the lack of church services today by reading the book of Matthew and Luke in the New Testament. Boy if ever a preacher was needed anywhere on earth, they need one on this ship. Before I came on here, I thought everyone believed in God...”

During that time my mother sent my dad a Book of Mormon. He read it from cover to cover and said it sounded like the truth, but that they didn’t need to change religions. Like so many good Christian men, my dad didn’t think Christ would have one true church. My dad wrote mother in a letter, saying that it didn’t matter what religion you were, as long as you did what was right and loved the Lord. In a letter dated Tuesday, November 30th, 1954, he said, “It doesn’t make one particle of difference which church you belong to anyway, which makes arguing between beliefs mighty silly. All churches believe in and worship the same God and teach the same Ten Commandments, so I myself, do not see any point for an argument. They also use the same Bible, so I don’t get it.”

Mother didn’t feel that way at all. She was sure there was one true church and she was sure this was it. In a letter dated Sunday, November 7th, 1954 he replied, “Please don’t call me a hardshell Baptist, honey, it’s just that I don’t think one’s religious denomination has a thing to do with his chances of eternal life. I believe God will choose only the just, faithful and deserving from each denomination which will definitely be a very few. I believe also that a person can learn just as much about God and His works through one religion as another. All he needs is the will and the interest to learn. But like you say, we’ll discuss it when I get home.”

My father is one of the finest men I have ever known. He is full of integrity and honesty. There isn’t a man who loves his family more than my father. He truly does love the Lord and he always does what he believes is right. But at the time, he thought all the religions were pretty much the same and it really didn’t matter which one you belonged to as long as you worshiped the Lord. So for years my mother went along with this.

                But somewhere in her heart, the truths that she had heard
     about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints kept coming back to her.

We lived in Chandler, Arizona, on a farm when I was growing up. I remember when I was in grade school, many of my friends would go to primary once a week after school. I remember thinking this was so cool. I asked one little girl if I could go too and she said, “Only Mormons go to Primary.” When I asked my mom, I guess this started things up all over again with my dad. When I got into junior high, all my friends were going to the school dances. When I asked my parents if I could go, they said they would ask our preacher if it was all right. He said, “No, absolutely not! Dancing is a wicked and evil practice and leads to all kinds of sin and heartache.!” Well he was right about one thing. It did lead to heartache. Mine, for not being allowed to go to the dances with my friends. One of the friends that I made during that time was a dear, sweet, little, Mormon girl by the name of Danawn. Her dad was my science teacher. I have six little sisters and two of them were also best friends with two of Danawn’s little sisters. We spent a lot of time at Danawn’s house.

                    Even though my home was filled with love and caring,
                                                     there was something different at Danawn’s.

Every morning they knelt in family prayer. Once a week they had family home evening, where they spent time together as a family. I could feel the spirit so strongly when I was there, so I loved spending time at Danawn’s. One Monday night for family home evening, her parents invited our whole family over. My mom and dad were so impressed with the spirit that they had felt there, that when Danawn’s parents asked them if they would like to have the missionary lessons, they said yes. This was a new beginning in my life. I will forever be grateful to my mother for following the prompting she felt from the Holy Ghost to join the Church. She felt so strongly that it was true and that it would be the best thing for our family. At the time, my dad didn’t quite accept all the teachings. But seeing how strongly my mother felt, knowing how much it meant to her and how for all these years she had believed in the gospel and had wanted to join the Church, he finally accepted her desire to be baptized.

On her birthday, September 24th, 1966 she was baptized and so was I and two of my sisters. After another year of studying and praying about the gospel, my dad developed his own strong testimony of the truthfulness of the gospel and he too was baptized. My parents have raised all of us girls in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. They have led through example and their testimony of the Church is strong. Since that day, between my family and extended family, there are over fifty members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

            All because of my mother who followed the prompting in her heart
                      and who wanted a more complete life
                                  and who wanted her family not for only now, but for eternity.

Now, I cannot imagine my life without the gospel. On a ride-along one night, I watched my husband in an all-out fight with a suspect and I watched as his partner got his skull crushed by a heavy glass bottle. I listened to the sirens and I watched as the police cars and ambulances came. I watched as other officers came running, ready to risk their lives for someone else. I cannot imagine sending my husband out the door to the kind of work he does without having the assurance of knowing we will be together forever. That same peace of mind comes when I send my family out the door. I cannot imagine raising my family in today’s world without the help of the gospel teachings.

We have four wonderful, strong children who have faith in the Lord and who have chosen mates for themselves who are also wonderful, strong and have faith in the Lord. They are raising their families in the ways of righteousness and to love the Lord. One night last year, my son Clay and his girlfriend had driven down to Tombstone in southern Arizona. On the way home, on that long, lonely, dark stretch of road, about twenty miles out of Tucson, their car broke down. It was late at night and in a bad area. Before they did anything, Clay said a prayer that they would be protected and that they would be able to find help. Then they got out of the car and started to walk. They had gotten no more than fifty feet, when a large semi-truck with two men, pulled over. The men asked them where they were going. Clay told them that they needed to get back to Mesa. The men said that they were headed that way so to jump in. They got in and then the driver began to back up his truck. Clay asked, “What are you doing?” The driver said, “That’s your car back there isn’t it?” Clay replied that it was. Then the driver said, “Well, this is a car hauler so we’ll just pull your car up and take it back with us.” Then the two men drove them home. The men didn’t want anything for their help, but Clay gave them all he had on him at the time, which was twenty dollars. When Clay told me this story, I was horrified thinking of all the terrible things that could have happened to them. I asked him, “Weren’t you afraid when the truck pulled over with two men?” He said, “Why mom? The Lord had sent them to us in an answer to our prayer.”

What kind of a boy is this that has this kind of faith? Right now, this same boy is on a mission to teach the gospel in Poland. He is sacrificing two years of his life, setting his own life on hold. He’s learning a new language, getting yelled at, called names, getting punched out, having rocks thrown at him, hit with a brick, chased off at knife point and he’s even been arrested. He is away from family and friends for two years. He’s on the other side of the world in a foreign country, with some other mother’s missionary who’s getting pelted with rocks and bricks as well. All this, for the Lord. He says that maybe in some small way this helps to repay the Lord for all the blessings He has showered on him. He loves his mission and he loves his Lord.

My family is a mother’s dream. I don’t think we realize, until we are older, how really precious our families are. And how really short our time together here on this earth is. I pray for my family  constantly and as a mother I wish I could prevent every mother’s child from having to suffer but I can’t. Many times I have asked the question, “Why do bad things happen to good people?”

In praying to know the answer, I have come to realize that in Heavenly Father’s eyes, this life is but a short twinkling of a moment. One of our purposes on earth is to prove ourselves to determine where we’ll spend our eternity. In order to do this, Heavenly Father has given us the precious gift of free agency. A gift so precious to Him that He will not even take it away from the bad people.

Look at the suffering the righteous have suffered throughout time. Look at the prophets of old. Look at Joseph Smith, the first modern day prophet. Look at the holocaust victims. Look at Christ, Heavenly Father’s Only Begotten Son. He didn’t even come down and stop His suffering. Even when Christ asked, “O Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me...” Look at the millions who endure incredible sufferings today. Why doesn’t Heavenly Father come down and stop it? Doesn’t He love us? Did we do something wrong? Are we undeserving of His love and protection? The answer is no! Sometimes we are just the victim of other’s evil free agency. A free agency that He will not stop yet. But the time is coming when He will stop the free agency of the evil and they will reap the reward they deserve ...forever ...and ever.

I know that Heavenly Father loves each of us individually and answers each of our prayers. He gave us families for our happiness. He gave us the commandments for our happiness. The only way we can be truly happy is to follow those commandments and to stay on that path of righteousness that leads back to our Father in Heaven. I am thankful to Jesus Christ for the atoning sacrifice He made for me so that when I do get weak and slip off that path, I can be forgiven and get back on. I am so thankful that my Heavenly Father loved me so much that He provided such a beautiful plan of salvation for me. One that would bring such joy and happiness to my life.

I know that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the true Church of our Savior, Jesus Christ. The more I study and the more I learn, the more I realize that the teachings of this Church make perfect sense. It makes everything taught in the scriptures fall into perfect place. As a convert to this church, I was able to see the fullness and the completeness of it’s teachings.

                          I say these things humbly, in the name of Jesus Christ.

                                                            Julie Jeppsen, Mrs. Badge #3751


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"Think About it..." mailed to your home for only $14.95   S&H included

Read "Think About it..." Online Warrior Stories  | Excerpts | News Articles | Poems
Rear Cover | Reviews | About the Book | About the Author | Order | E-Mail  |  Home

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A 317 page full size book, mailed to your home for only $14.95   S&H included