Learning Faith Through Life’s Challenges

Twig of Faith

Life is sometimes very exciting…

Last night Rainbow called us at the perfectly reasonable hour of 12:30 a.m. to tell us the exciting news of her engagement to a wonderful man.  “Yay! Congratulations! That’s so exciting! Good night!”  He’s a good man, and we are very happy for them.

and sometimes overwhelming.

Now, it’s Sunday. I went to church. For me, that’s kind of like saying, “The sun rose in the morning. It set in the evening.” It isn’t unusual or even very remarkable. It’s ordinary and taken for granted. But it is so good.

Today at church in the ladies’ meeting, called “Relief Society”, we had a discussion about “Trials of Our Faith”. It was centered around a talk given by Neil A. Anderson in October 2012. We read some good quotes and talked about them a little and then the teacher showed this video clip:

Warning – You Might Cry

The tears flowed freely. One family in our congregation lost a grandbaby a year ago in a tragic accident. Another woman this week learned that she has no trace of the advanced cancer she was diagnosed with  eight months ago. Women in my association have recently had surgeries, miscarried babies, lost mothers, been rejected by parents, and cried over children making poor life choices. So many of their trials look so much bigger to me than any of mine ever have been.

IMG_20130324_145159And yet, for a while now, I have struggled with my own perception of how I handled one of the most difficult trials of my life. I knew that I was following God’s will as my family and I took on a new challenge. I had no doubt that we were where He wanted us, doing what He asked. It was hard. And painful. Sometimes I yelled at the Heavenly Father I knew loved me. Sometimes I yelled at my husband. Sometimes I yelled at my children. I prayed. I cried. I tried to reach out in service to help others. It was still hard. And painful. When the time came and we ended the challenge we had willingly chosen to accept, I felt like a failure. I felt that God had asked me to do something and I couldn’t hack it and I’d just quit on Him. There were many valid reasons for us to end that challenge, but I still felt I’d failed somehow and I thought about it often.

Then today in church, an inspired woman said the words my heart needed to hear:

“If you go through a trial, no matter how painful or difficult, and come out the other side with a stronger testimony of Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, then that is the only thing that matters.”

That was the exact balm I needed to finally heal the wound on my spirit. My family and I did go through that difficult time and come out with a stronger testimony of our Heavenly Father and the power of Jesus Christ’s sacrifice. In the end, that is the only thing that matters. Thank Heaven.

Tonight the sun will set. In the morning, the sun will rise. If things continue in the ordinary way, so will I. I’ll get dressed and Mr. Hot Stuff will take me to the hospital for a surgery that I have long resisted having. But it’s time now. I’m doing okay with it. I think in the end my body will be better off because of it, but no matter the outcome of the physical part, this experience has given me greater faith in my Heavenly Father and in Jesus Christ, and that is what really matters.

winner-winner, veggie dinner 🙂

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