Monday, December 3, 2018

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland on keeping perspective through life's struggles

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland (born December 3, 1940) served as Church Commissioner of Education from 1976-1980, as the president of BYU from 1980-1989, as a Seventy from 1989-1994, and as a member of the Quorum of Twelve Apostles since 1994.
"Also let us remember that through any illness or difficult challenge, there is still much in life to be hopeful about and grateful for. We are infinitely more than our limitations or our afflictions! ...
"Whatever your struggle, my brothers and sisters—mental or emotional or physical or otherwise—do not vote against the preciousness of life by ending it! Trust in God. Hold on in His love. Know that one day the dawn will break brightly and all shadows of mortality will flee. Though we may feel we are 'like a broken vessel,' as the Psalmist says (Psalm 31:12), we must remember, that vessel is in the hands of the divine potter. Broken minds can be healed just the way broken bones and broken hearts are healed. While God is at work making those repairs, the rest of us can help by being merciful, nonjudgmental, and kind."
- Jeffrey R. Holland, "Like a Broken Vessel," General Conference October 2013
Click here to read or listen to the full talk

There are many ways that we sometimes feel "broken" in life, as Elder Holland notes—emotionally, physically, mentally. But no matter the cause or the source, he reminds us there is yet much to be hopeful about in our lives, and much for which we should be grateful. If we allow our eternal perspective to take priority, we'll realize that "our limitations or our afflictions" are such a small part of the eternal picture. And so the key is to trust in God:

Elder Holland warns us that sometimes repairs take a little time. We need to be patient and trusting. And we also need to be "merciful, nonjudgmental, and kind" while we watch repairs take place in the lives of others. We only add to the pain of the damage when we are critical or insensitive to those in recovery. It's a great part of our ministry to support one another in all things, at all times and situations while God works his restoration miracles.

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

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