In our church we have this super awesome bi-annual conference that the whole church/world is invited to watch. Amazingly, no matter what I am struggling with or concerned about at the time, I always hear a talk that helps me with my doubts.
I just re-listened to an incredible discourse on faith.
(gorgeous cemetery in Boston which shall remain nameless cause I forgot the name)
The word “faith” makes most people think about religious themes but in reality, if faith is something “hoped for and not seen” then it applies to anything that is not within our immediate view.
I’m reminded of a baby’s development during that first year of life when they gain the ability to understand that just because something is out of view, that doesn’t mean it ceases to exist (I think they call it object permanence in child development speak). How interesting that one of the first life lessons that a child learns is that of faith. Believing in something they can’t see.
Elder Jeffrey Holland (one of the apostles of the church) gave this talk and he is one of my most favorite speakers of all time. Great inflection and fantastic imagery and metaphors. His awe-inspiring alliteration (see what I did there??) makes me want to reread his talks just for the literary value.
I could tell you all the things I loved about this talk all day long, instead I’ll let you read it (listening is even better!) here. And I’ll just include some of my favorite quotes…
speaking regarding one of Christ’s miracles where a father asks for a blessing on his son:
“If thou canst do any thing,” spoken by the father, comes back to him “If thou canst believe,” spoken by the Master.4
“Straightway,” the scripture says—not slowly nor skeptically nor cynically but “straightway”—the father cries out in his unvarnished parental pain, “Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief.”
I’ve always loved this scripture. How many of us can relate to this father? We ardently desire to believe yet we are simultaneously painfully aware of our imperfections.
“hold fast to what you already know and stand strong until additional knowledge comes…
“The size of your faith or the degree of your knowledge is not the issue—it is the integrity you demonstrate toward the faith you do have and the truth you already know.
“In this Church, what we know will always trump what we do not know. And remember, in this world, everyone is to walk by faith.
“When doubt or difficulty come, do not be afraid to ask for help. If we want it as humbly and honestly as this father did, we can get it.”
Wow. Seriously, just go read it already.
And be believing.