Elder Holland: 4 Things God Wants Us to Remember in Times of...

Elder Holland: 4 Things God Wants Us to Remember in Times of Trouble and Darkness

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Why do we experience pain?

“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. . . . The Lord . . . will be a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble.” (Psalms 46:1–3; 9:9)

One of the unfailing facts of mortal life is the recurring presence of trouble, the recurring challenge of difficulty and pain. . . . Someone once reasoned that confronting problems is apparently the common denominator of the living—the great bond between the rich and the poor, the learned and the ignorant, the believer and the skeptic. . . . One popular writer said that expecting a trouble-free life because you are a good person is like expecting the bull not to charge you because you are a vegetarian.

When these difficult days (and nights!) come—and they will—it will help us to remember that “it must needs be,” that in the grand councils of heaven before the world was, we agreed to such a time of challenge and refinement. We were taught then that facing, resolving, and enduring troublesome times was the price we would pay for progress. And we were committed to progress eternally. . . .

Thus, even though on some days we might wish it otherwise, it is essential that our temporal journey be laced with all kinds of choices and alternatives, opportunities and obstacles, exhilarating highs and sometimes devastating lows. . . .

Of course, the greatest reassurance in this plan is that there was from the beginning a fail-safe protection built into the arrangement, an unassailable guarantee (if we want it) against every mistake we might make, every sin we would commit, every trial we would confront, every discouragement, disease, and the death we will all ultimately face. This salvation would come in the form of a Messiah, the Messiah—the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God. He would come “with healing in his wings,” both temporally and spiritually. His message would be one of hope and peace. His atoning sacrifice would overcome death and hell for every man, woman, and child from Adam to the end of the world.

He would break the bands of our bondage and our troubles, and He would set us free. . . .

Yes, there will be stress and sorrow in life, and we will not always get the answers from heaven we prefer, but God will always give the answer we need—and with it He will give both strength and spiritual solace in all our times of trouble.

Remember, God is for you.

When I cry unto thee, then shall mine enemies turn back: this I know; for God is for me. (Psalm 56:9)

. . . I believe all confidence, all comfort, all strength, all safety starts here—“This I know; . . . God is for me.”

That truth has to be seared into our hearts, written in bold letters across the tissue of our brains, and never forgotten. Like the blood of the Passover with which ancient Israelites were to mark the lintel and side posts of their doors, we ought to have some such figurative reminder constantly before our eyes and always in our hearts that God is for us. . . .

He loves us. He is our Heavenly Father. He never sleeps nor slumbers in His watch care over us. His work and His glory are to save us, to exalt us, to see us safely home with Him.

Everything He does is in support of that ultimate purpose, no matter what refinements or trials are required in the achievement of that objective. Acknowledging the dimensions of His majesty and all quantum physics of the universe, from the budding of a flower in spring to expanding realms of galaxies without number, God’s singular, solitary quest is to bless and exalt His children, to save (if they will let Him) every human soul. . . .

And as the Apostle Paul would later ask, “If God be for us, who [or we might add, what] can be against us? . . . We are more than conquerors through him that loved us.”

Read the full article at LDS Living.

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