Sunday, August 28, 2011


I planned to blog on writing tips today, but there has been so much heartache and pain in the group, I thought adversity would be a better subject. So I went to Neal A. Maxwell for words of comfort and solace. He said:

"A good friend, who knows whereof he speaks, has observed of trials,'If its fair, it is not a true trial!' That is, without the added presence of some inexplicableness and some irony and injustice, the experience may not stretch us or lift us sufficiently. The crucifixion of Christ was clearly the greatest injustice in human history, but the Savior bore up under it with majesty and indescribable valor."

Another: "How can you and I really expect to glide naively through life as if to say, "Lord, give me experience, but not grief, not sorrow, not pain, not opposition, not betrayal, and certainly not to be forsaken. Keep from me, Lord, all those experiences which made Thee what Thou art! Then let me come and dwell with Thee and fully share Thy joy."

When we look at adversity that way, it is so apparent that we really do need to experience it, but oh, how we dread it!

"You are all familiar with Olympic high-divers. They get scored on their dive according to the degree of difficulty. And you and I see people who are deprived in various ways performing so well in the midst of deep difficulty...I think of the scripture, "Where much is given, much is required." (D&C 82:3) and wonder if there is a sub-scripture that "Where less is given, some nevertheless return so very much...." In a sermon the Prophet Joseph rendered a verse in the Book of Hebrews differently. Paul said, "God is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him." Hebrews 11:6) The Prophet Joseph rendered it, "God is a revealer to them that diligently seek him...." I salute all of those through whom the works of God are manifest in the midst of their deprivation ... I remind us all that we should submit to Him in the degrees of difficulty that are given to us and rejoice in those who then do so well. On judgment day when all those who have been faithful will hear the words "Well done, thou good and faithful servant" (Matt 25:23), perhaps there will be one addendum to some who have in their extraordinary deprivation (and trials) done so very well -- "Especially well done, thou good and faithful servant." (Talk given January 13, 1995)

I suspect there will be many who receive that extra word of praise and thanks from this group.

One final word from the apostle: "Exceptional souls are not developed by being made exceptions to the challenges that are common to mankind."

Exceptional souls are being made today, though our hearts ache for the suffering that brings that blessed state.

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