Watch your step!
This is a lesson I had to learn early in life. They called me “Crash” for a little while thanks to my adventures in knocking out my three front teeth by falling down the stairs and breaking my arm not long after. I looked a bit like this little girl on the left…
So one can only imagine that my life has had it’s fair share of ups and downs, just like everyone else’s. So what is it that makes a difference? Why am I out here serving a mission instead of moping around at home because my life didn’t exactly turn out the way that I planned it or the way that I wanted it to be? Because Mom and Dad taught me something important. It’s helped me while playing lacrosse and helped me while facing life trying to throw me around.
When you fall down, because you inevitably will, don’t give up but get up and try again. Or try it a different way. It’s something we missionaries like to call “Endure to the End”. In other words, see everything through to the end: life, that homework assignment, a ridiculously long day… Everything. Just keep going!
“And, if you keep my commandments and endure to the end you shall have eternal life, which gift is the greatest of all the gifts of God.” (Doctrine and Covenants 14:7)
I’ll be honest with you. Sometimes it’s really difficult to keep the commandments and keep doing the right things in life. And it’s not always meant to be easy. This life is a test. But at the end of the test comes something better than a perfect score or an A+. At the end of the test comes eternal life. It’s not just living forever, but living forever with our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and the Holy Ghost and our families. That sounds like a pretty incredible gift. So how do we get there?
Just keep swimming! It’s a quote from Dory in Finding Nemo and it’s how my parents like to end their weekly letters to me. No matter how hard it gets, just rely on the Savior. He suffered all so He would know how to lift us up in our trials.
“And he will take upon him death, that he may loose the bands of death which bind his people; and he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities.” (Alma 7:12)
We will never be alone. So if we fall, all we have to do is trust in the Lord and get back up again. It might hurt, it might leave a scar, and we might be so tired of trying that we just want to give up. I’ve been there. I’ve been there so many times that it’s hard to think about ever being there again. So what keeps me going? Why do I keep getting up every time I fall? Because I know that Heavenly Father is watching over me. I have a Savior who knows exactly how I feel and how to help me try again, even if I don’t know myself.
He knows way better than I do because He can see the end from the beginning. I might not always understand, but He knows what he’s doing. So if you fall, don’t be afraid to get back up again and keep trying! You never know just what’s waiting for you just on the other side of that hill.