a "two fer" on discouraging days
I have been asked to speak next month in a ward RS in my stake on making Lemonade out of lemons. I had to laugh as I don't really think of myself as someone who typically sees the bright side right away. I suggested that they ask my hubby if they wanted that topic covered by a pro. The RS president said she wanted a "spiritual" meeting and wants to address how to consecrate the trials of life for our good. As a result, I have been doing a lot of studying and listening to talks about this topic. Two that I love are from current apostles.
The first is Boyd K. Packer, who was no stranger to trials.
He said this:
We seem to demand instant everything, including instant solutions to our problems. We are indoctrinated that somehow we should always be instantly emotionally comfortable. When that is not so, some become anxious - and all too frequently seek relief from counseling, from analysis, and even from medication.
It was meant to be that life would be a challenge.
To suffer some anxiety, some depression, some disappointment, even some failure is normal.
Teach our members that if they have a good miserable day once in awhile. or several in a row, to stand steady and face them.
Things will straighten out.
There is great purpose in our struggle in life."
And from one of my faves, Elder Dallin H. Oaks
Elder Oak's father was 37 and a recent med school graduate, just starting his opthamology practice, when he died of tuberculosis. He left behind a widow, three young children (of which Dallin was the oldest at 8 years of age), and a mountain of medical school debt. Dallin's mother went through a significant bout of depression for a period of time so he and his siblings were sent off to live with his grandparents for a long stretch. Dallin struggled in school and was at one point called the "dumbest boy in the room". He remembers on one occasion when classmates threw rocks at him and called him stupid. During his years at BYU he worked 30 hours a week for .75 cents an hour. He and his wife June and their young family had many lean years as he pursued his bachelors degree and later law school at the University of Chicago.
Speaking of trials, he is quoted as saying,
"..you should have a measure of gratitude for these experiences... the strengths you develop by this means will be with you in the eternities to come.
Feel no envy for those whose financial or intellectual resources make it easy.
The stuff of growth was never made of ease,
and the persons who have it easy will need to experience their growth with other sacrifices, or forgo the advancement that is the purpose of life."
Good timber does not grow with ease.
The stronger winds, the tougher trees.
The further sky, the greater length.
The more the storm, the more the strength.
By sin and cold and rain and snow,
In "trees or man" good timbers grow.
May God bless us to take advantage of our opportunities and adversities and to grow by them.