“Finding the Strength and Courage to Fly,” Liahona, February 2021
A short while ago, a pair of doves began building a nest in a tree in my garden. I watched as they gathered small branches to create what would eventually become their home.
A few days later, I saw empty eggshells on the grass. Two beautiful chicks had hatched. They grew so fast that soon they were almost as big as their mother.
One morning I watched as one of the chicks, standing at the edge of the nest, made several attempts to fly. Finally, the baby dove took off, flying to the roof of our home. Within a few days, this brave dove was taking flight with its mother.
The other chick, meanwhile, would watch from the nest. Perhaps thinking that one day it would join them. I had my doubts. This baby dove didn’t seem to have a desire to fly.
To my surprise, however, a few days later I found the chick walking in the grass below the nest. Apparently, it had tried to fly. For several days afterward, the chick made many clumsy attempts to fly. Finally, it succeeded, flying back to the nest and from there into the sky.
As children of God, our divine nature gives us the potential to fly spiritually. We may, however, make the mistake of measuring our progress the way I initially measured the progress of the reluctant baby dove with the progress of its sibling. When we compare our spiritual efforts to others we consider more valiant, we may think we are not making progress.
The adversary also wants us to think that we can’t progress spiritually. He wants us to believe that only temporal things matter, so he tempts us with distractions such as the fashions and vain things of the world.
During our earthly probation, we go through many trials, tribulations, and failures. But our Heavenly Father has told us, “Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest” (Joshua 1:9). When we fall short, the Lord expects us to keep trying, to remember our potential, and, like the chick, to keep our sights on heaven.