“Enduring and Serving,” New Era, Nov. 2013, 2–3
“When the pathway of life takes a cruel turn, there is the temptation to ask the question ‘Why me?’ At times there appears to be no light at the end of the tunnel. … We feel abandoned, heartbroken, alone. … We become impatient for a solution to our problems, forgetting that frequently the heavenly virtue of patience is required.
“The difficulties which come to us present us with the real test of our ability to endure. A fundamental question remains to be answered by each of us: Shall I falter, or shall I finish? …
“Whenever we are inclined to feel burdened down with the blows of life, let us remember that others have passed the same way, have endured, and then have overcome.
“The history of the Church … is replete with the experiences of those who have struggled and yet who have remained steadfast and of good cheer. The reason? They have made the gospel of Jesus Christ the center of their lives. This is what will pull us through whatever comes our way. We will still experience difficult challenges, but we will be able to face them, to meet them head on, and to emerge victorious.
“From the bed of pain, from the pillow wet with tears, we are lifted heavenward by that divine assurance and precious promise: ‘I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee’ (Joshua 1:5). Such comfort is priceless.”
“Your Heavenly Father loves you—each of you. That love never changes. It is not influenced by your appearance, by your possessions, or by the amount of money you have in your bank account. It is not changed by your talents and abilities. It is simply there. It is there for you when you are sad or happy, discouraged or hopeful. God’s love is there for you whether or not you feel you deserve love. It is simply always there.”
“Our Heavenly Father, who gives us so much to delight in, also knows that we learn and grow and become stronger as we face and survive the trials through which we must pass. We know that there are times when we will experience heartbreaking sorrow, when we will grieve, and when we may be tested to our limits. However, such difficulties allow us to change for the better, to rebuild our lives in the way our Heavenly Father teaches us, and to become something different from what we were—better than we were, more understanding than we were, more empathetic than we were, with stronger testimonies than we had before.
“This should be our purpose—to persevere and endure, yes, but also to become more spiritually refined as we make our way through sunshine and sorrow. Were it not for challenges to overcome and problems to solve, we would remain much as we are, with little or no progress toward our goal of eternal life.”
“As we seek our Heavenly Father through fervent, sincere prayer and earnest, dedicated scripture study, our testimonies will become strong and deeply rooted. We will know of God’s love for us. We will understand that we do not ever walk alone. I promise you that you will one day stand aside and look at your difficult times, and you will realize that He was always there beside you.”
“Home teaching is more than a mechanical visit once per month. Ours is the responsibility to teach, to inspire, to motivate, and where we visit those who are not active, to bring to activity and to eventual exaltation the sons and daughters of God. …
“If any of you has slipped into complacency concerning your home teaching visits, may I say that there is no time like the present to rededicate yourself to fulfilling your home teaching duties. Decide now to make whatever effort is necessary to reach those for whom you have been given responsibility. …
“Brethren, our efforts in home teaching are ongoing. The work will never be concluded until our Lord and Master says, ‘It is enough.’ There are lives to brighten. There are hearts to touch. There are souls to save. Ours is the sacred privilege to brighten, to touch, and to save those precious souls entrusted to our care. We should do so faithfully and with hearts filled with gladness.
“… I turn to one particular example to describe the type of home teachers we should be. There is one Teacher whose life overshadows all others. He taught of life and death, of duty and destiny. He lived not to be served but to serve, not to receive but to give, not to save His life but to sacrifice it for others. He described a love more beautiful than lust, a poverty richer than treasure. …
“I speak of the Master Teacher, even Jesus Christ. … With Him as our unfailing guide and exemplar, we shall qualify for His divine help in our home teaching. … We will become true shepherds.”