“The power of faith in our lives can be profound...
The purpose of Faith is not to change God's will, but to empower us to act on God's will... Faith is trust: trust that God sees what we cannot, that he knows what we do not. Sometimes trusting our own vision is not enough… Faith means we trust not only in his wisdom, but that we trust also in his love. It means trusting that God loves us perfectly. That everything He does, every blessing he gives, and every blessing He, for a time, withholds is for our eternal happiness. With this kind of faith, though we may not understand why certain things happen or why some prayers go unanswered, we can know that in the end everything will make sense." || Dieter F. Uchtdorf
I know I've been writing about Faith a lot lately, but it's been a subject that has been heavy on my mind for, really, the last year, but especially the last few months.
In the wake of this last miscarriage, I felt overwhelmed with misunderstanding and, even, anger. I wrote to you all about how hopeless I felt in my blog post about that pregnancy loss. After everything I'd remained faithful through, that miscarriage felt like a slap in the face. My faith suffered. For the first time in my entire life I felt ready to give it all up. A voice inside me that I had never heard, shouted at me, "If this is what we get for being faithful, then why are we even bothering?" I felt completely lost.
Some may wonder how I got to be nearly 30, and through some of life's greatest trials without ever having wavered in faith. For me, faith has always felt like a spiritual gift to me. Faith was as natural as breathing. Trusting the Lord always made sense. And this definitely helped me greatly in my life, but it also hindered my ability to empathize with others who struggled to understand faith. But in that ultrasound room on July 28th, I understood what it felt like to grasp for faith and not find a strong hold. It suddenly felt like I could never understand God's plan or ever trust in Him. I wrestled with my thoughts as I began to tick off a list of all the reasons I did not deserve to keep enduring this pain of loss, "I try to live righteously. I pray. I read my scriptures. I go to the temple. I serve at my church. I share my testimony with others. I did not lose faith through infertility. I did not abandon my faith when we lost our first pregnancy. I did not give up faith during my pregnancy with Max. And I stood faithful and praised God while I gave the eulogy at his funeral. I did it all right. So, why this? Why now? Why more pain? Why bother? Why keep trusting?"
Great faith requires a lot of trust- trust in God's divine plan for us, trust in His eternal love for us, trust in the Savior's infinite atonement for us. While for some faith comes a little more easily, that kind of trusting faith is not built within us or maintained by us easily. It takes daily prayer and pleading with the Lord to help us see. It requires diligently studying the words of the scriptures to help us understand. Faith takes work and action. Without it, everything, every trial and hardship, would feel impossible to overcome. But with it, it all be comes a little easier to endure.
Faith does not make the hard struggles of life go away, but, I realized, neither does giving up your faith. If I gave it all up, if I stopped trusting in the Lord because things got hard, things would not stop being hard. The trials of life, the struggles of mortality would remain, but my ability to navigate them peacefully and wisely would be lost. That is what faith does. "The power of faith in our lives can be profound," it can give us strength to endure that could never posses with out it. That trusting faith in the Lord offers us guidance through the difficult times and the peace we need to keep going. And that is why I cannot and will not give up my faith.
Do not give up your faith. If you already have, pray to the Lord to help you regain its power. It will take time and energy, but you will be able to hold strong to it once again.
Do not be deceived into thinking that trials are punishments, or that God does not wish to bless you. that could not be further from the truth. God is not punishing you or ignoring you. Life is just full of testing and of trying our faith. God wishes for nothing more than to bless you, and when the power of faith is alive in you the blessings become so much more evident.
Stay true. Keep trusting. Hold tightly to your faith. Sooner than you think, it will all make sense.