Our Father in Heaven has invited you to express your needs, hopes, and desires unto Him. That should not be done in a spirit of negotiation, but rather as a willingness to obey His will no matter what direction that takes. His invitation, “Ask, and ye shall receive” (3 Ne. 27:29) does not assure that you will get what you want. It does guarantee that, if worthy, you will get what you need, as judged by a Father that loves you perfectly, who wants your eternal happiness even more than do you.
If you need a transfusion of spiritual strength, then just ask for it. We call that prayer. Prayer is powerful spiritual medicine. The instructions for its use are found in the scriptures.
One of our sacred hymns carries this message:
Ere you left your room this morning,
Did you think to pray? …
When your soul was full of sorrow,
Balm of Gilead did you borrow
At the gates of day?
Oh, how praying rests the weary!
Prayer will change the night to day.
So, when life gets dark and dreary,
Don’t forget to pray
(“Did You Think to Pray?” Hymns, 1985, no. 140).
Some frustrations we must endure without really solving the problem. Some things that ought to be put in order are not put in order because we cannot control them. Things we cannot solve, we must survive.
If you resent someone for something he has done—or failed to do—forget it.
Too often the things we carry are petty, even stupid. If you are still upset after all these years because Aunt Clara didn’t come to your wedding reception, why don’t you grow up and forget it?
If you brood constantly over a loss or a past mistake, look ahead—settle it.
We call that forgiveness. Forgiveness is powerful spiritual medicine. To extend forgiveness, that soothing balm, to those who have offended you is to heal. And, more difficult yet, when the need is there, forgive yourself!
I repeat, “John, leave it alone. Mary, leave it alone.”
Purge and cleanse and soothe your soul and your heart and your mind and that of others.
A cloud will then be lifted, a beam cast from your eye. There will come that peace which surpasseth understanding.
The Lord said, “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:27).
“If ye love me, keep my commandments.
“And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;
“Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.
“I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you” (John 14:15–18).
(In Mark 9) This is one of the greatest New Testament accounts we have probing the complexity of faith and the degrees one experiences in its development. The man's inital faith, by his own admission, is limited. But he has some faith. He did, after all, approach the disciples but, of course, met dissapointment there. With whatever remaining faith he has, he turns to Jesus and says, "If thou canst do any thing," please help us, hoping perhaps Jeus might be able to succeed where all others have failed.
Christ, ever the teacher, seizes on the man's very language and limited faith and turns it back on him "If thou canst believe," Christ says, "all things are possible to him that believeth." In that very instant, in the length of time it takes to have that two-sentence exchange, this man's understanding begins to be enlightened. The look in the Savior's eye or he tone of His voice or the majesty of His bearing or simily the words He spoke -something touches this man spiritually and an inexorable change begins. Up to that moment he had thought that everything depended on others -doctors, soothsayers, priests, the disciples, or, here at the very last, Jesus. Only now, in this exchange, does he grasp that a great deal of the answer to his quest rests upon his own shoulders, or, more accurately, in his own soul.
If any of us are imperfect, it is our duty to pray for the gift that will make us perfect. Have I imperfections? I am full of them. What is my duty? To pray to God to give me the gifts that will correct these imperfections. If I am an angry man, it is my duty to pray for charity, which suffereth long and is kind. Am I an envious man? It is my duty to seek for charity, which envieth not. So with all the gifts of the Gospel. They are intended for this purpose. No man ought to say, ‘Oh, I cannot help this; it is my nature.’ He is not justified in it, for the reason that God has promised to give strength to correct these things, and to give gifts that will eradicate them.
The whole gamut of human endeavor is now open to women. There is not anything that you cannot do if you will set your mind to it. You can include in the dream of the woman you would like to be a picture of one qualified to serve society and make a significant contribution to the world of which she will be a part.
… Having a knowledge of God, we begin to know how to approach Him, and how to ask so as to receive an answer. When we understand the character of God, and know how to come to Him, He begins to unfold the heavens to us, and to tell us all about it. When we are ready to come to Him, He is ready to come to us.