I am a rock, sharp and uneven. I know my goal- smooth, polished, shiny- and I am so far from it.
But, the process to get there is not an easy one.
The past two weeks at church, I've heard and taught lessons on trials. We spoke of the early saints and the persecutions they endured. Specifically, Zion's Camp. They were a group of men (in Ohio) organized to help the saints in Missouri. After embarking on their thousand mile trek, they were tried by aching, bleeding feet, lack of food and water, oh, and cholera. Weeks later, the discovered that their original goal would not be reached and they went back home. The journey, it turns out, was a test of their faith.
I asked the kids in my Primary class (ten years old) why we have tests. I got several answers, but my favorite was, "To find out what we know and what we need to know."
I believe we are given tests as a gift. Not one that we would put on a list at Christmas or our birthday, but a gift all the same. There is no other way for us to grow. Growing is hard. But it is necessary, or we stagnate, and that is not why we're here.
I've watched my kids go through medical procedures that are painful. It hurts me as a mom, to see them in pain. But, I know the end result will be worth it. Our Heavenly Father is the same. He knows how hard this life is. He knows that the trials we're given are painful. But, He also knows our potential and the way to get there.
At the last conference, Pres. Uchtdorf said,
"He does not wish to break your spirit. On the contrary, He desires that you rise up and become the person you were designed to be."
I believe in a loving Heavenly Father who weeps with us. I believe our Savior understands what we're going through and He is there for us to strengthen us and buoy us up. I believe that the trials I'm given will help to smooth my rough edges and bring me closer to the person He knows I can be.