When faced with life's challenges,
it is Important to Remember
that although Daniel was saved from the lions,
he was not saved from the Lion's Den.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Hold On

Tonight, I was thinking about the concept of holding on and how it applies to us in the gospel.  I think that, no matter who we are or how our life is going at this time, there will come a time when we will have trials that will seem to be more than we can bear.  Those trials will literally bring us to our knees.  It will seem as if we will not make it.  It will feel as if we can not take another step, have another hope, or believe in another person.
When this time comes for each of us, it will require great faith.  Faith that was developed before that moment.  Faith that will help us to take that much needed step.  Faith that will give us the knowledge to continue on the path.  It may be hard to see that at times, but hold on a little longer, for “eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him” and wait for Him". (1 Corinthians 2:9; see also D&C 76:10; 133:45). 

Sometimes, I think we each come to a point in our lives when it feels like it is nearly impossible to hold on.  I remember when I took my children rock climbing at Pinnacle Peak.  The boys were pretty young and I had been climbing for awhile with other friends.  I decided that it would be a good thing to do with the boys.  A great way to introduce them to a sport that I loved doing.  So, we got the gear, drove nearly an hour, unloaded and went hiking.  The cliff was a good half hour hike from the best parking place.  I loaded the gear in the army rucksack and set out with the boys and one adult friend to the cliff.  When we got there, the boys were fascinated by the gear and the cliffs.  First, we had to explain all the gear and the knots and what different things were used for.  We had to set the safety rules in place so that no one would be hurt.  We had to drop the rope from the top so that the boys would be on belay.  I did the first climb to check the gear and than it was their turn (finally).
They were so excited to be climbing!  Louis did pretty well getting up to the top, so did DJ.  There were a couple of places where they had to struggle, but it really was a relatively easy climb and not difficult for growing boys full of energy and a sense of adventure.  Then it was Adam's turn.  Now, Adam is the youngest of the three boys.  He loves to do whatever the older brothers do, but he doesn't always listen to the rules first.  He was the one of all the boys that seemed to manage getting hurt or lost on every outing.  So, he is the one we took the most time explaining what he would be doing.  The first thing we told him was to hug the rock and don't look down.  He got about three quarters of the way up the cliff and was exceedingly proud of his accomplishment.  He was a natural climber and made it up like a monkey.  Much faster and easier than any of the rest of us.  He stopped and turned to look down and make fun of his brothers.  I could see his face go white!  He sucked himself right into the rock and was not going to move!
We tried coxing and talking.  Finally, there was no hope for it, I knew I would need to climb up to him and get him down.  There was only one small problem.  The rope was on him!  That meant that I would need to free climb.  I am not fond of free climbing on any cliff.  It can be dangerous and is usually unnecessary.  However, we really could not get him down.  He had his foot on a good outcropping of rock and he was not moving anywhere!
So, up the cliff I went, after my youngest son.  I must admit that the climb was harder than I thought.  He might have made it look easy, but it was difficult for me.  It might have really been tough, or it might have been just because I had no rope and it was a long and painful way down if I fell.  When I was nearly to him my foot slipped off the rock, took some skin off of one of my legs, and I ended up hanging onto the cliff by two fingers.  My sweet little son called down to me,  "you can hold on mama, just hold on".  So, I uttered a prayer, took a deep breath, and found a toe hold that hadn't been there the moment before.  I was pretty well rattled by the time I got up that cliff to my son.   When I was able to clip on to his rope and take him down to safety, it was one of the most memorable moments in my young life!  We repelled down to the ground together (which he actually enjoyed much more than trying to climb UP the cliff, especially because he had me right next to him).  
Life can be a lot like this cliff and my young son.  Sometimes it seems as if things are not going the way we would like, and we can't see the way.  Just follow the advice of my young son and "hold on, just hold on".  The Lord is mindful of you and He will help you.  He knows you are on that cliff and He knows what you need. 
President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, has stated,  "If ever you are tempted to become discouraged or to lose faith, hold on a little longer. You can do this! You are part of a special generation. You were prepared and preserved to live at this important time in the existence of our beautiful planet earth. You have a celestial pedigree and therefore have all the necessary talents to make your life an eternal success story.
The Lord has blessed you with a testimony of the truth. You have felt His influence and witnessed His power. And if you continue to seek Him, He will continue to grant you sacred experiences. With these and other spiritual gifts, you will be able not only to change your own life for the better but also to bless your homes, wards or branches, communities, cities, states, and nations with your goodness".

In essence, you WILL be able to climb that cliff.  You will do that because He is the one right there beside you holding the rope.  As long as you hold to Him and don't let go, all will be well.

1 comment:

  1. Great story to illustrate the point, but I'm sorry you had to go through that! Scary!!! I agree that we do need to prepare our faith before the trials come so we can hold on.