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The challenges of mortality can help us grow 2

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Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles:

“Our needed conversions are often achieved more readily by suffering and adversity than by comfort and tranquility [see 2 Nephi 2:2; D&C 121:7–8].

“Most of us experience some measure of what the scriptures call ‘the furnace of affliction’ (Isa. 48:10; 1 Ne. 20:10). Some are submerged in service to a disadvantaged family member. Others suffer the death of a loved one or the loss or postponement of a righteous goal like marriage or childbearing. Still others struggle with personal impairments or with feelings of rejection, inadequacy, or depression. Through the justice and mercy of a loving Father in Heaven, the refinement and sanctification possible through such experiences can help us achieve what God desires us to become” (“The Challenge to Become,” Ensign, Nov. 2000, 33–34).

Sister Mary Ellen W. Smoot, who served as Relief Society General President: “It does not take much living to find out that life almost never turns out the way you planned it. Adversity and affliction come to everyone. Do you know anyone who would not like to change something about themselves or their circumstances? And yet I am sure you know many who go forward with faith. You are drawn to those people, inspired by them, and even strengthened by their examples” (“Developing Inner Strength,” Ensign, May 2002, 13).

Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin:

“I testify that the Man who suffered for mankind, who committed His life to healing the sick and comforting the disconsolate, is mindful of your sufferings, doubts, and heartaches.

“‘Then,’ the world would ask, ‘why does He sleep when the tempest rages all around me? Why does He not still this storm, or why would He let me suffer?’

“Your answer may be found in considering a butterfly. Wrapped tightly in its cocoon, the developing chrysalis must struggle with all its might to break its confinement. The butterfly might think, Why must I suffer so? Why cannot I simply, in the twinkling of an eye, become a butterfly?

“Such thoughts would be contrary to the Creator’s design. The struggle to break out of the cocoon develops the butterfly so it can fly. Without that adversity, the butterfly would never have the strength to achieve its destiny. It would never develop the strength to become something extraordinary” (“Finding a Safe Harbor,” Ensign, May 2000, 59–60).

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles: “A life without problems or limitations or challenges—life without ‘opposition in all things’ [2 Nephi 2:11], as Lehi phrased it—would paradoxically but in very fact be less rewarding and less ennobling than one which confronts—even frequently confronts—difficulty and disappointment and sorrow. As beloved Eve said, were it not for the difficulties faced in a fallen world, neither she nor Adam nor any of the rest of us ever would have known ‘the joy of our redemption, and the eternal life which God giveth unto all the obedient’ [Moses 5:11]” (“The Peaceable Things of the Kingdom,” Ensign, Nov. 1996, 84).


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