Friday, August 17, 2018

Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin on finding peace in the storms and challenges of life

Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin (1917-2008) served as a Seventy from 1976 to 1986, then as a member of the Quorum of Twelve Apostles from 1986 until his passing in 2008 at age 91.
"Living the gospel does not mean the storms of life will pass us by, but we will be better prepared to face them with serenity and peace. 'Search diligently, pray always, and be believing,' the Lord admonished, 'and all things shall work together for your good, if ye walk uprightly.' (D&C 90:24)
"Draw close to the Lord Jesus Christ. Be of good cheer. Keep the faith. Doubt not. The storms will one day be stilled. Our beloved prophet, President Gordon B. Hinckley, has said: 'We have nothing to fear. God is at the helm... [and] He will shower down blessings upon those who walk in obedience to His commandments.' ('This Is the Work of the Master,' Ensign, May 1995, 71.)
"In our own storms in life the Savior is our solace and our sanctuary. If we seek peace, we must come unto Him. He Himself spoke this eternal truth when He said, 'My yoke is easy, and my burden is light' (Matt. 11:30). When our souls are anchored in the safe harbor of the Savior, we can proclaim as did Paul: 'We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed' (2 Cor. 4:8–9)."
- Joseph B. Wirthlin, "Finding a Safe Harbor," General Conference April 2000
Click here to read or listen to the full talk

This is one of my favorite talks by Elder Wirthlin; it's worthwhile to review the whole message. Elder Wirthlin teaches that faithful living does not guarantee freedom from challenges in life; but it does ensure that we don't have to face the challenges alone or unprepared. Instead, we can confront difficulties "with serenity and peace" knowing that all will be well in the Savior's care. Even more, we are promised that "all things shall work together for [our] good" when we live according to the four conditions outlined in the revelation: search diligently, pray always, be believing, walk uprightly.

If we seek peace, we must come to Him. Ultimately, there is no other way. With Him, there is nothing to fear, regardless of the challenges that surround us. This is a powerful message!

(Compilation and commentary by David Kenison, Orem, Utah, 2018)

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