If you trust Heavenly Father and move forward in faith, you will be able to look back and recognize the Lord’s guiding hand in your life.
These days, everything around us is instantaneous: instant messaging, instant music, instant Google results, and even instant oatmeal. But heaven doesn’t always work that way. Just like when you see the “spinning ‘wait cursor’” on your screen, as Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf says, it’s easy to wonder how long you’ll have to wait until you see the Lord guiding your life.
In his address “The Adventure of Mortality,” Elder Uchtdorf shares how he fell behind in school because he was forced to leave his home in East Germany during World War II. He struggled in his required English class, but with the encouragement of leaders and family, he trusted God and worked hard. He progressed in his studies and found a passion for aviation but was dismayed to find he must learn English for his chosen career. Undaunted, he traveled at age 19 from Germany to San Antonio, Texas, to compete for the top spot in Air Force pilot training—a program taught in English. Despite his demanding studies, Uchtdorf actively participated in church activities (against the advice of his flight instructor). He eventually learned English, and he even graduated top of his class. As a child Elder Uchtdorf didn’t know where he would end up, or what he would become. But he did the little things the best he could and trusted that God could make more of him than he believed.
Elder Uchtdorf says, “Now, you may be thinking, ‘Yes, Elder Uchtdorf, that’s all very nice for you. But you are an Apostle. I’m not like that. I’m not important to God. My prayers are not answered. My life is not directed. If there is a plan for me it’s a thrift store version. A hand-me-down plan. A pat-on-the-head-just-be-content-with-what-you-have plan.’ My dear friends, remember what Steve Jobs said: ‘You cannot connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backward.’”
Through his anecdotes and humor, Elder Uchtdorf reminds us that even if we don’t instantly see the Lord guiding our lives, we may just need to show our faith in God by moving forward in our lives with trust that the dots will all connect in the end.
Read the full talk to discover Elder Uchtdorf’s list of five things we can do to find the patience and perspective necessary to face difficult choices and insurmountable odds.
—Saralee Dunster, Mormon Insights
FEATURE IMAGE BY ANNIE SPRATT
Find more insights
Learn more about trusting in the Lord in Elder David A. Bednar’s talk “Accepting the Lord’s Will and Timing.”