Now, what do we hear in the gospel which we have received? A voice of gladness! A voice of mercy from heaven; and a voice of truth out of the earth; glad tidings for the dead; a voice of gladness for the living and the dead…
Brethren, shall we not go on in so great a cause? Go forward and not backward. Courage, brethren; and on, on to the victory! Let your hearts rejoice, and be exceedingly glad…
Let the mountains shout for joy, and all ye valleys cry aloud; and all ye seas and dry lands tell the wonders of your Eternal King! Section 128
In the midst of tribulation, what have you found makes the difference between trust and despair?
I do not believe that sheer suffering teaches. If suffering alone taught, all the world would be wise, since everyone suffers.
To suffering must be added mourning, understanding, patience, love, openness, and the willingness to remain vulnerable."
(Quoted in A Disciple’s Life, Chapter 2, Bruce Hafen)
"Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one.
Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep; in journeyings often,
in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren;
in weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness" (2 Cor. 11:24-27).
He has already suffered
for our sins and pain
When we take Jesus' yoke upon us, this admits us eventually to what Paul called the 'fellowship of [Christ's] sufferings' (Philippians 3:10). Whether illness or aloneness, injustice or rejection...our comparatively small-scale sufferings, if we are meek, will sink into the very marrow of the soul. We then better appreciate not only Jesus' sufferings for us, but also His matchless character, moving us to greater adoration and even emulation.
"Alma revealed that Jesus knows how to succor us in the midst of our griefs and sicknesses precisely because Jesus has already borne our griefs and sicknesses (see Alma 7:11-12).
He knows them firsthand; thus His empathy is earned. Of course, we do not comprehend it fully any more than we understand how He bore all mortal sins; but His Atonement remains the rescuing and reassuring reality." (Ensign, May 1997, p12)
Therefore, He knows
What we will suffer
Therefore, He knows
How to prepare us…
There are in the gospel warm and cuddly doctrines, and there are some that are just outright wintry doctrines. These doctrines are true, but we avert our gaze from them, because we don’t wish to contemplate them…
Sometimes the Lord hastens His work in our spiritual development by a compression of experiences…Sometimes the best people…have the worst experiences…because they are most ready to learn.
A Disciples Life, Chapter 2
#1- We Can avoid tribulation if we are “good” enough
If we hold the belief that God will shield us from tribulation because of our obedience and then adversity strikes, we may be tempted to accuse God of not hearing our prayers or, worse, that He doesn’t honor His promises. Obedience to God is not insurance against pain and sadness.
Some unpleasant things just come with this telestial turf. Challenges have always been included in God’s great plan to test our faith, to stimulate in us growth, humility, and compassion. Heartache and struggle were divinely designed to stretch us to where we have nowhere else to turn but to God.
(In the world ye shall have tribulation, BYU Devotional, April, 2004)
#2- We can’t avoid tribulation because we are too “bad”.
#3- We can heal all our tribulations with our own efforts.
Speaking to the Apostles in His final moments before Gethsemane, Jesus said, “In the world ye shall have tribulation, but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).
“How was it possible for the Twelve to be of good cheer?”
The unimaginable agony of Gethsemane was about to descend upon Jesus; Judas’ betrayal was imminent. Then would come Jesus’ arrest and arraignment; the scattering of the Twelve like sheep; the awful scourging of the Savior; the unjust trial; the mob’s shrill cry for Barabbas instead of Jesus; and then the awful crucifixion on Calvary.
What was there to be cheerful about? Just what Jesus said: He had overcome the world! The atonement was about to be a reality. The resurrection of all mankind was assured. Death was to be done away with—Satan had failed to stop the atonement.
[But a Few Days (Salt Lake City: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 1983), 4]
Truman and Ann, this is Neal. You've been so kind to inquire and to write. I feel deprived of a chance to talk with you personally but wanted to tell you how much I love you.
We're in this interesting valley, and hoping we can get extracted, with the key things that my body needs to produce, which can't come from the outside. . . . We're not releasing the hospital number, but I may try again to get to you. This is Wednesday afternoon about 3:25. I love you both so much.
It's the kind of experience [pause] in which I need some tutoring; and yet, at the same time, [a tired chuckle], I won't mind when the course is over. We love you.