I have always found it interesting how differently people handle life’s challenges. What makes someone more resilient? Perhaps that question can be answered with another question, one that Russell M. Nelson asked near the end of one of his conference talks, “Are you willing to let God prevail in your life?”1 I have thought a lot about that question over the last few months. What does it mean to let God prevail in our lives? Do we trust in Him and in His timing? Are we willing to rely on Him when we are asked to do hard things? Are we willing to walk away from the world, even if we are mocked for doing so? Most likely my answers to those questions will be a little different than yours. And I suspect even the meaning of those questions changes depending on what is happening in our lives.
One certainty in life is that we will have challenges—difficult ones! We will have disappointments, heartaches, doubts, and losses. At one point or another, we have all had to ask ourselves if we are willing to let God prevail in our lives, though we probably didn’t use those exact words.
Just recently I accepted a new assignment, one I cannot possibly do without a lot of help from Heavenly Father. I had questions only He could answer. And He did! I need His constant guidance. Letting Him prevail in my life is taking me on a beautiful journey. There have been other times in my life when I have had to trust Him and trust His promises. As I have done that, I have been sustained in my heartaches and have been able to rejoice in my covenants.
I have watched others as they have gone through heart-wrenching and life-changing events. Even if they weren’t consciously asking it, they have still had to confront that question head-on. Trusting God and letting Him prevail in our lives doesn’t mean going through our challenges alone. He expects us to “mourn with those that mourn and comfort those who stand in need of comfort.”2
One of our family friends got Covid really bad. He spent a few weeks in the hospital. At times, his condition was grim. His wife, feeling overwhelmed and scared and needing more faith than she had on her own, reached out to our family and asked for our faith and prayers. Our prayers were constant as we pleaded with Heavenly Father to bless our friend and his family, always placing our trust in Him no matter what happened. We decided to fast as a family. Things improved dramatically—for a few days. Then he had a setback. We fasted again. We kept praying. We held on to our faith and so did his family. He improved slowly and was finally able to go home. He still has a long road ahead of him, but he continues to recover and regain his strength.
You may recall the experience President Nelson shared about his granddaughter-in-law whose father passed away despite fasting, prayers, and priesthood blessings. Understandably, she was devastated. She had to consciously “expand [her] perspective and seek the eternal.”1 President Nelson said, “By choosing to let God prevail, she is finding peace.”1 If we choose to do the same, we too will have peace and “wholeness and joy.”1
As we ask ourselves if we are willing to let God prevail, President Nelson reminds us that the word willing is crucial. “We have our agency. … We can choose to let God prevail in our lives, or not. We can choose to let God be the most powerful influence in our lives, or not.”1 Let’s choose to do it—everyday and always! At times it may be difficult, but it is surely much easier than the alternative! Especially in our most difficult hours, life is always better when God is in charge.
1. Let God Prevail – Russell M. Nelson
2. Mosiah 18:9