In like manner, never doubt the reality of faith. You will gather the fruits of faith as you follow the principles God has established for its use. Trust in God and in His willingness to provide help when needed, no matter how challenging the circumstance. Be patient and understanding when God lets you struggle to grow and answers come a piece at a time over an extended period. Motivating faith is centered in trust in the Lord and in His willingness to answer your needs.
You can learn to use faith more effectively by applying this principle taught by Moroni: Those feelings will fortify your faith. As you repeat that pattern, your faith will become stronger. The Lord knows your needs. When you ask with honesty and real intent, He will prompt you to do that which will increase your ability to act in faith.
With consistent practice, faith will become a vibrant, powerful, uplifting, inspiring force in your life. As you walk to the boundary of your understanding into the twilight of uncertainty, exercising faith, you will be led to find solutions you would not obtain otherwise. I testify that I know that is true. Even if you exercise your strongest faith, God will not always reward you immediately according to your desires.
Rather, God will respond with what in His eternal plan is best for you. He loves you to a depth and completeness you cannot conceive of in your mortal state. Indeed, were you to know His entire plan, you would never ask for that which is contrary to it even though your feelings tempt you to do so. Sincere faith gives understanding and strength to accept the will of our Heavenly Father when it differs from our own. We can accept His will with peace and assurance, confident that His infinite wisdom surpasses our own ability to comprehend fully His plan as it unfolds a piece at a time.
Faith is not just push a button and you get the answer. Yet those trying experiences have been edifying. It is comforting to know that God will never try you more than you can manage with His help.
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God uses your faith to mold your character. Character is the manifestation of what you are becoming. Strong moral character results from consistent correct choices in the trials and testing of life. Your faith can guide you to those correct choices. Clearly, it is what you do and what you think about that determine what you are and what you will become. Therefore, the choices you make need to be inspired by the Lord. Others can encourage you to make the right decisions, but those choices must not be prescribed by them. You need to ponder, pray, and exercise faith to willingly make choices consistent with the teachings of the Master.
Such choices are made with trust in things that are believed and when acted upon will be confirmed. Only enough guidance is given to lead you aright and not to weaken your growing character. That guidance will solidify your trust in Heavenly Father and the Savior.
Faith will forge strength of character available to you in times of urgent need. Such character is not developed in moments of great challenge or temptation. That is when it is used. Character is woven patiently from threads of principle, doctrine, and obedience. In James we read: But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. Worthy character will strengthen your capacity to obediently respond to the direction of the Spirit. Righteous character is what you are becoming.
It is more important than what you own, what you have learned, or what goals you have accomplished. It allows you to be trusted. Righteous character provides the foundation of spiritual strength.
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It enables you in times of trial and testing to make difficult, extremely important decisions correctly even when they seem overpowering. I testify that neither Satan nor any other power can weaken or destroy your growing character.
Only you could do that through disobedience. Your exercise of faith builds character.
Relationship with God
Fortified character expands your capacity to exercise faith. Thus, your confidence in conquering the trials of life is enhanced. And the strengthening cycle continues. The more your character is fortified, the more enabled you are to exercise the power of faith. You get what you pay for in obedience, in faith in Jesus Christ, in diligent application of the truths that you learn.
What you get is the molding of your character, with growth in capacity, and the successful completion of your purpose here on earth—to grow through being proven. No matter what occurs, no matter how topsy-turvy the world becomes, you can always have the sustaining power of faith. That will never change. The perfect love of your Father in Heaven will never change.
His gospel plan gives life meaning and can assure your happiness. His plan is not only to prove yourself here on earth but also that you may receive the growth that comes from correct decisions prompted by faith, enabled by your obedience. Why worry about future calamities or uncertainties over which you have no control? Your righteous character magnifies the probability that you will never have to suffer them. When challenges and testing do come, your faith will lead you to solutions. Your peace of mind, your assurance of answers to vexing problems, your ultimate joy depend upon your trust in Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ.
Love, under these conditions, can seem pointless—even weak. But it's just the opposite. If you ask me, love is our greatest purpose. And we need faith and hope to live it. Faith is the muscle that enables us to break impossible barriers in order to express and receive love. Love like the world depends on it. Don't waste energy on despair. Instead, put it into bolstering your faith. When you feel oppression so thick it steals the air, breathe faith. A world of peace depends on the love we bring into it.
No one can ever rob us of our ability to love. Ask God for the strength to love to your full potential. Keep an open dialogue with the source of all love to guide you through your trials. Sometimes the greatest strength we can receive comes through helping others in need. Just ask Mother Teresa. Let inspiration help you stay connected through faith.
Trust the Process: Growth through Adversity
We are how we spend our time. So if you want to walk the path of faith, pave it with as many faithful people as you can. Finding those types of friends is as hard as hell.
It helps to start by focusing on being that kind of friend. Faith is the decision to love when it seems impossible. Rather than give in and settle for less, set a daily intention to love—no matter how hard it may be. Meditate on faith, and ask for everything you need to love like crazy—first thing in the morning. That'll start your day with the momentum you need to make even the hardest decisions. And remember—never settle for less than you deserve—in your jobs, in your relationships, in your challenges to yourself.
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