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Setting Our Watches to God’s Time

If we align our timing with God’s and learn patience, we can find happiness and charity through trials.

"Too much anxious opening of the oven door and the cake falls instead of rising. So it is with us. If we are always selfishly taking our temperature to see if we are happy, we will not be." -Elder Neal A. Maxwell

Photo by Couleur

In the age of smartphones, social media, and Netflix, we’ve been trained to expect results without much effort or wait. We can type a question into our phones, and Google will give us pages of answers to choose from. We can watch new movies and TV shows from our living room couch. But when it comes to building a relationship with God, our easy methods don’t seem to cut it. We find ourselves having to learn patience.

In a BYU devotional titled “Patience,” Elder Neal A. Maxwell discusses this eternal principle, saying: “Patience permits us to cling to our faith in the Lord when we are tossed about by suffering as if by surf.” Most of us know this statement is true, but how often do we still find ourselves thinking, I’ve suffered long enough or Why is God letting this go on so long? Without intending to, we’re trying to force our timetable on God, suggesting that we know better than he does.

The problem is that when we’re impatient with God’s timing, we miss the chance to grow and learn—and we also miss the chance to help others. By waiting on the Lord and looking for the wisdom we can gain and the people we can help, we can not only mature spiritually as children of God but also assist others on their journeys. As Elder Maxwell observes, “A patient willingness to defer dividends is a hallmark of individual maturity.” By putting off our natural tendency to want results immediately, we can receive all the blessings God has in store for us.

Read Elder Neal A. Maxwell’s full speech “Patience” to learn more about this divine principle.

Source: BYU Speeches

—Jenna Ahern, Mormon Insights

FEATURE IMAGE BY ANNIE SPRATT

Find more insights

Watch the video “Continue in Patience” to learn more about the benefits of patience.

Read the article “5 Examples of Patience (Beginning with Grilled Cheese),” by David. A. Edwards, for more ways to improve your patience.

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