I'm almost 100% positive I've written about this talk before, but it's been on my mind a lot lately. One of my favorite talks given by Henry B. Eyring is entitled, "Mountains to Climb". (you can click the title for the link :) )
President Eyring spoke of an address Spencer W. Kimball gave about this topic:
I heard President Spencer W. Kimball, in a session of conference, ask that God would give him mountains to climb. He said: “There are great challenges ahead of us, giant opportunities to be met. I welcome that exciting prospect and feel to say to the Lord, humbly, ‘Give me this mountain,’ give me these challenges.”1
He goes on to say that after he prayed for his own "mountain to climb", he was given a challenge more difficult than he had yet experienced in his life. I think if we were to all be honest with ourselves, we want to be good. And we want to be better than we were before. And so perhaps we, too, sometimes consciously or subconsciously (or VERY subconsciously :) ) ask God to help us become who He wants us to be by giving us challenges that with strengthen and shape us. And then the hike up that mountain begins! And sometimes we don't know how long the trail will be or how steep the incline is, or the level of difficulty of this particular hike. And we begin to question a) why are we doing this b) can we even do this?!
I remember going for a 14-mile run with my sister Hann once (don't even ask why I thought this was an ok idea, I think we were training for something? but it was in Oregon and it was gorgeous so life could have been worse). FYI Hann is a lot faster than me when it comes to distance running. And! she was the one who was keeping track of how far/long we had been running. There is no one in this world that I love more than my sister, but I think I was swearing at her in my brain for at least a good 7 of those miles, probably more. Because it was a looong run. And my competitive side wasn't going to let Hann totally paste me for all of those miles, I had to at least kind of keep up. But why did she have to be running so fast? And not even sweating? Or gasping? Or dying? And I had no idea when we were going to be done. And I somehow thought that she had forced me into this. And it was her fault that I was doing this stupid run :)
Comparatively, how often are we in the midst of a trial and think to ourselves, "God! Why is this happening!? Fix it!" And His response very well could be, "You wanted to be stronger, and this is the way we go about this. There is no easy way. There is no other way."
I may not have been happy about that one long run with my sister, but I was happy that it made consecutive runs easier. We may not LOVE our trials as we are going through them, but I do think we will be, or should be, grateful for the strength they give us for the future.
While I was a missionary my dad wrote me a letter very similar to this concept of "mountains" and the message is one that has stuck with me. He spoke of times in his own life, climbing mountains, both figuratively and literally, and how much more beautiful the view became with each ascending peak. He said to me, "Soon will be the day that you will be grateful and appreciative and understanding of the challenges that you have faced and you will find joy in this knowledge. The knowledge that your Father in Heaven loves you, and the knowledge that you Father in Heaven has a particular path for you in life."
I am grateful for the mountains I have climbed throughout my life. I am particularly grateful for the way they have helped me better know and love my Savior.
love you too much!!!
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