The question “Why me?” can be a difficult one to answer and often leads to frustration and despair. There is a better question to ask ourselves. That question is “What could I learn from this experience?”
The way we answer that question may determine the quality of our lives not only on this earth but also in the eternities to come. Though our trials are diverse, there is one thing the Lord expects of us no matter our difficulties and sorrows: He expects us to press on.
Make up your mind to be happy-even when you don't have money, even when
you don't have a clear complexion, even when you don't have the Nobel
Prize. Some of the happiest people I know have none of these things
the world insists are necessary for satisfaction and joy. Why are they
happy? I suppose it is because they don't listen very well. Or they
listen too well-to the things their hearts tell them. They glory in
the beauty of the earth. They glory in the rivers and the canyons and
the call of the meadowlark. They glory in the love of their families,
the stumbling steps of a toddler, the wise and tender smile of the elderly.
They glory in honest labor. They glory in the scriptures. They glory
in the presence of the Holy Ghost. One thing I know for certain: the
time we have here goes by far too quickly. Don't waste any more time
sitting on the bench watching life pass you by.
Faith is not only a feeling; it is a decision.
I believe in Christ as the rising sun-- not that I can see it, but that by it, I can see everything.
We cannot enjoy power in the priesthood until we learn to act by faith.
Where time and circumstances permit, members are encouraged to replace some leisure activities with temple service. . . .
All of the ordinances which take place in the House of the Lord become expressions of our belief in that fundamental and basic doctrine of the immortality of the human soul. As we redouble our efforts and our faithfulness in going to the temple, the Lord will bless us.
God bless you to walk fearlessly, even though you walk in loneliness, and to know in your hearts that peace which comes of squaring one’s life with principle, that “peace of God, which passeth all understanding” (Philippians 4:7)
I would like to conclude by saying to you here today, you young men and women who are in this great congregation, this is your lot. Oh, you are all together here now. You are all of one kind; you are all of one mind. But you are training to go out into the world where you are not going to have about you ten thousand, twenty thousand, twenty-five thousand others like you. You will feel the loneliness of your faith.
It is not easy, for instance, to be virtuous when all about you there are those who scoff at virtue.
It is not easy to be honest when all about you there are those who are interested only in making “a fast buck.”
It is not always easy to be temperate when all about you there are those who scoff at sobriety.
It is not easy to be industrious when all about you there are those who do not believe in the value of work.
It is not easy to be a man of integrity when all about you there are those who will forsake principle for expediency.
The Peace of the Spirit
I would like to say to you here today, my brethren and sisters, there is loneliness—but a man of your kind has to live with his conscience. A man has to live with his principles. A man has to live with his convictions. A man has to live with his testimony. Unless he does so, he is miserable—dreadfully miserable. And while there may be thorns, while there may be disappointment, while there may be trouble and travail, heartache and heartbreak, and desperate loneliness, there will be peace and comfort and strength.
A Promise and a Blessing
I like these great words of the Lord given to those who would go out and teach this gospel:
I will go before your face. I will be on your right hand and on your left, and my Spirit shall be in your hearts, and mine angels round about you, to bear you up. [D&C 84:88]
We are experiencing a serious economic downturn. You read of thousands of layoffs. This may be a difficult season for you. You worry much about your personal affairs. You worry about money. You worry about marriage. You worry about the future.
There may be some lean days ahead for some of you. There may be troubles. None of us can avoid them all. Do not despair. Do not give up. Look for the sunlight through the clouds. Opportunities will eventually open to you. I finished the University of Utah in 1932. It was the very bottom of the most serious depression of modern times. The unemployment rate in Utah was then more than 30 percent. There was much of cynicism. It was a time when men stood in soup lines, and some committed suicide in despair. But somehow we managed to eat and keep going. Opportunities gradually opened, first here and then there. In 1982, I spoke at the fiftieth anniversary of my graduating class. I met there men and women who had become prominent in many undertakings. They had begun almost in poverty. But they kept climbing upward. They had become leaders. They had looked for the positive in life, praying with faith and working with diligence.