“How can you and I really expect to glide naively through life, as if to say, ‘Lord, give me experience, but not grief, not sorrow, not pain, not opposition, not betrayal, and certainly not to be forsaken. Keep from me, Lord, all those experiences which made Thee what Thou art! Then let me come and dwell with Thee and fully share Thy joy!’” -Elder Neal A. Maxwell
When I first read this quote, I laughed. I read it today, and felt like shooting myself in the foot in an attempt to clear these endless concerns with myself from my brain. There was no actual shooting, I'm not that committed, but I found that I've lost any sense of gratitude lately. I had this idea in my head that I wasn't "doing anything wrong", therefore everything should be working out perfectly. Don't get me wrong, because I do feel I deserve a lot. But what am I doing here if I'm not learning or growing in any way?
I was reading in Ether, Chapter 12 the other night, and came upon this verse:
4. Wherefore, whoso believeth in
God might with a surety hope for a
better world, yea, even a place at
the right hand of God, which hope
cometh of faith, maketh an anchor
to the souls of men, which would
make them sure and steadfast,
always abounding in good works,
being led to glorify God.
I was feeling a loss of hope for a bright future. I didn't feel like my family would ever be whole or "normal" again. I didn't understand why people didn't seem to see me as worth their time. I mean, I'm a nice girl, I should have an overwhelming amount of people wanting to be around me, right? So where are they? And why can't I afford nice clothes like that girl, and why can't my house be sparkling clean without me doing any work, and why can't I at least have a really outgoing personality, or have a good hair day for once, and why don't I have everything I want right now? I deserve it. I'm entitled to it. Right?
6. ...faith is in things which are hoped for
and not seen; wherefore, dispute
not because ye see not, for ye
receive no witness until after the
trial of your faith.
Just like the quote I began this entry with, I had heard this scripture so many times I couldn't even count. I read scriptures everyday, and I begin to think that means I know all they have to offer. This scripture was very humbling; I don't know a fraction of it. I get so caught up in what I want now, I forget what I want most. Hoping for a brighter future, for a more wholesome family situation, for a clean house, for good friends who care, is a blessing. The fact that I know these things are possible (as long as they are righteous desires) through living the right way and staying close to the Lord is a huge blessing. Hoping for these things is a blessing. I shouldn't complain because I don't see it right now. I need to have faith in that my Creator knows who I am, better than I do. He will lead me to who I'm supposed to be, who I came here to be. It is prideful to think that I know who I am, and where I am meant to be better than the Lord does. He knows, and He wants to show me.
9. Wherefore, ye may also have
hope, and be partakers of the gift,
if ye will but have faith.
I just need to remember to ask, and be humble enough to hear the answer. One of my old friends sent me a quote in a letter while he was on his mission: "Patience is the capacity to endure trouble, delay, opposition or suffering without becoming angry, frustrated or anxious. It is the ability to do God's will and accept His timing." This is found in PMG, chapter six. It applies to almost every situation, if you think about it. The trick is...to think about it.
12. For if there be no faith among
the children of men God can do no
miracle among them...
If you want to see results, have faith that the results will come. If you want God to do something for you, let Him. He can't do anything for you if you don't have faith that He can. In 3 Nephi chapter 17, Christ is about to leave the Nephites (v 4), but He has compassion upon them, and tarries with them a little longer. I find that so powerful. It's something so small and so simple. Yet, a lot of the time that's really all I need from others - just to stay...because they want to stay with me, because they sincerely enjoy my company. Anyway, Christ stays with them, and says in verse 7 to bring any among them who are afflicted in any manner to Him. "I see that your faith is sufficient that I should heal you (v 8)."
So, basically, I'm human. No surprises here. I love the scriptures. I love the gospel. I don't want to know who I would be without it. This is the only place that I find real, lasting peace. It's something no one can truly understand until they feel it, and it is easily forgotten. Sometimes I forget. That's probably why "remember" is the most used word in the scriptures. Go figure. "REMEMBER, and perish not." -Msh 4: 30.
"But let patience have her
perfect work, that ye may
be perfect and entire,