In the Book of Mormon, the brother of Jared and his people face a long and harrowing journey. The Lord has promised He will deliver them safely to a new land, the promised land. However, as we take a closer look at their experience, we discover it was the ferocious winds and waves that propelled them and steered them to where they needed to go. Ether 6:8 reads:
And it came to pass that the wind did never cease to blow towards the promised land while they were upon the waters; and thus they were driven forth before the wind.
Do you face strong winds and towering waves? When we face these moments, we often want to cry out for peace and still waters, not realizing the Lord is trying to help us get to a better land. Accepting this process and keeping our faith strong can be a challenge. Here are a few different ways you can access the power of God and the power of your own divinity to transform your trials.
Don’t Relinquish Your Agency
The first thing Satan wants to do when we are weak is to have us give up on our agency. He wants us to feel powerless and to stop trying. Continue righteous actions and effort will keep you steady and sure. You may need to recognize limitations and be patient with yourself as you work within the bounds of your own mortality. But don’t accept that nothing will change and that you have no power to make a difference in your own life, even if they seem small.
Focus on the Nature of Jesus Christ
People will always tell you to look for what you can learn from trials. This is often glib and unhelpful, especially in the midst of deep pain. Instead, focus on what you are learning about the nature of our Savior. That is the true purpose of all our journeys: to become like Jesus Christ. Study His life and His characteristics. See how your wind and waves can make you more like Him. studying the Christlike attributes section in Preach My Gospel can be a great starting point.
Ask for Help and Strive for Honesty
The brother of Jared didn’t travel alone. He and his family had such a strong desire to be together and to not have their languages confounded like the rest of the people at the Tower of Babel. They made their journey together. Strive to be honest about what you’re going through and seek appropriate help, whether it is professional or ecclesiastical. It can be hard at first to open up, but start small. If you don’t know how to open up, consider writing down a few ways to respond to the question, “How are you doing?”
Start Building Your Promised Land
Unlike the brother of Jared, we aren’t necessarily physically trapped in a boat where we just have to wait. There are likely many things we can do today to build our promised land. Make goals of where you’d like to be. Try not to stop dreaming beyond your limited expectations. Read your patriarchal blessing every day and try to discover what your promised land can look like with the help of the Lord. Doing small things every day to believe in a joyous future can help you keep going.
What do you allow your trials to propell towards God?