Faith: Sources of inspiration in times of struggle

Sister Jana McDonald
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints

I have been reflecting on my source of inspiration in times of struggle. I turn to God in prayer and to His words in scripture.

Today these words popped out for me. “Therefore, let your hearts be comforted; for all things shall work together for good to them that walk uprightly…” (Doctrine and Covenants 100:15)

Another source of guidance is the wisdom of those who teach in humility. Recently Ronald Yates quoted C.S. Lewis. Yates states, “It still rings as true today in our COVID-infected world as it did then.

“(In 1948, Lewis said)How are we to live in an atomic age? I am tempted to reply: Why, as you would have lived in the sixteenth century when the plague visited London almost every year, or as you would have lived in a Viking age when raiders from Scandinavia might land and cut your throat any night; or indeed, as you are already living in an age of cancer, an age of chronic pain, an age of paralysis, an age of air raids, an age of railway accidents, an age of motor accidents. In other words, do not let us begin by exaggerating the novelty of our situation.

“Believe me, dear sir or madam, you and all whom you love were already sentenced to death before the atomic bomb was invented: and quite a high percentage of us were going to die in unpleasant ways. It is perfectly ridiculous to go about whimpering and drawing long faces because the scientists have added one more chance of painful and premature death to a world which already bristled with such chances and in which death itself was not a chance at all, but a certainty.

“The first action to be taken is to pull ourselves together. If we are all going to be destroyed by an atomic bomb, let that bomb when it comes find us doing sensible and human things—praying, working, teaching, reading, listening to music, bathing the children, playing tennis, chatting to our friends over a pint and a game of darts—not huddled together like frightened sheep and thinking about death. They may break our bodies (a microbe can do that) but they need not dominate our minds.”

Wisdom such as this is water to a famished soul. I drink again and again and find refreshment. I will end with another truth.

This one comes from an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ. Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, counsels us regarding the Lord’s commandments given for our protection.

“Christ never once withheld His love from anyone, but He also never once said to anyone, “Because I love you, you are exempt from keeping my commandments.”(August 23, 2021). May we sense the love of God in our lives. He knows our struggles.

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