“Simple Reminders for Finding Your Way through Life,” Liahona, January 2022
Millions of people around the world watched on television as the first humans walked on the moon. My dad was one of them. Suddenly, at only age seven, he knew what he wanted to do with his life.
When he learned that many astronauts started out as fighter pilots, he decided right then what he wanted to focus on in school—aerospace engineering. He eventually became a fighter pilot in the United States Navy with the dream of becoming an astronaut.
While I was growing up, I felt like my life needed to be mapped out too. But it wasn’t so easy for me to decide what I wanted to do. I felt like I wasn’t smart enough, dedicated enough, or brave enough to set a course for my life and stick with it. To be honest, I still struggle with this sometimes.
As I’ve gotten older, I’ve learned that many young people feel the same way. Few people know exactly what path to take early on. Most of us figure it out as we go. And that’s all right! Thankfully, we don’t have to go it alone. There is help along the way.
Being unsure of what direction I wanted to take caused me to often feel uneasy. I felt that I should be doing something else or be somewhere else. I felt like there was just one thing that Heavenly Father wanted me to do, and if I missed it, I would derail my opportunities for eternity. As you can imagine, this created a lot of unnecessary anxiety in my life!
I’ve since learned that Heavenly Father has blessed each of us with spiritual gifts and that there are many good things we can do that will please Him. We don’t need to worry about finding the one and only path for our life. As long as we’re living the gospel and making and keeping sacred covenants, He will help us make the most of where we are now and know how to move forward.
When I received my patriarchal blessing, one part stood out to me—something that applies to all of us. I was reminded that getting to the celestial kingdom isn’t done by one decisive act or one great deed. It’s done in the choices—big and small—that we make each day, particularly as we choose to come unto Jesus Christ and live His gospel.
As we take action in all areas of our lives with faith in Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, we put ourselves in a position to be guided. We’ll also find that wherever They lead us will be exactly where we want to be too.
Even with the best-laid plans, things don’t always turn out the way we think they will. My dad’s life didn’t. He never became an astronaut, but he’d be the first to tell you that the Lord guided him to what was best for him and our family.
The scriptures teach us to “search diligently, pray always, and be believing, and all things shall work together for your good” (Doctrine and Covenants 90:24). Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ know how all things work together. They also know what is good for us because They know and love us perfectly.
Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ don’t expect us to figure out our lives all on our own. If we trust Them and allow Them to walk this life with us, we will be encouraged to keep going and make decisions that will help us make the most of our lives.