GCBC Week 15: “Waiting upon the Lord: Thy Will Be Done” by Elder Robert D. Hales

I remember being very moved as I watched and listened to this talk during general conference.  I did not know that Elder Hales had been ill, but his changed appearance made it clear that he had undergone some kind of serious medical circumstance.  Even not knowing all the details, but recognizing that he has been through some significant struggles, I felt deeply the words he was teaching about being patient through hard times. As I listened to it again today, I was touched again by his sweet testimony of the Savior and his meek attitude toward enduring.  A great example to be followed.

Waiting upon the Lord: Thy Will Be Done  by Elder Robert D. Hales

“I have often pondered, Why is it that the Son of God and His holy prophets and all the faithful Saints have trials and tribulations, even when they are trying to do Heavenly Father’s will? Why is it so hard, especially for them? . . .  These mortal challenges allow us and our Heavenly Father to see whether we will exercise our agency to follow His Son. He already knows, and we have the opportunity to learn, that no matter how difficult our circumstances, “all these things shall [be for our] experience, and … [our] good.” “

What messages from this talk were meaningful to you? What did you learn? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

To anyone who is checking out GCBC for the first time, the goal is to read one General Conference talk a week and discuss it together as an on-line “book club.” If you want to learn more, go here, and join the discussion here each week.

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12 thoughts on “GCBC Week 15: “Waiting upon the Lord: Thy Will Be Done” by Elder Robert D. Hales

  1. I’ve read it.
    Sometimes it is hard to see those around us (and ourselves) suffer “even when they are trying to do Heavenly Father’s will”…but I guess that is part of the whole thing, to have to endure…not just to get a free pass for being a good person.

  2. That was such a beautiful talk and so relevant to me right now. The most powerful message for me would be the reminder that we need to endure to the end, that everything will make sense and be solved in the Lord’s time. He used such powerful examples. I have been faced with several trials recently, well this past year that are very hard to unravel and figure out. This reminds me in so many ways that maybe I don’t need to figure it out, I just need to “hold fast” as he put it and endure to the end. Thanks for sharing this talk!

  3. These are great truths, though sometimes so hard to apply in real life. My tendency is the stress and worry and want to know all the details now. However, in the moments when I remind myself that someone much smarter, wiser and loving than me is in charge, I can let all these things go and the peace comes flooding in. I just need to get better at remembering to do that…

  4. I agree with Jan…in fact I needed this talk and Jan’s comment to remind me to stop stressing and worrying about our finical and living issues we are currently having. The Lord knows what we need and when we need it and we will be ok!

    I also love it when he said, “Too often we pray to have patience, but we want it right now!”

  5. I remembered this talk because of Elder Hales drastic appearance change. I find myself reading this more slowly and trying hard to pay attention to words and phrases. This man looks like he is walking through the valley of the shadow of death (I don’t mean this rudely) and he himself states at the beginning of his talk about his study of the Atonement. I loved every line of this talk. Amazing talk from an amazing apostle of the Lord.

  6. I have read and listened to this talk numerous times. Love everything in it. And it applies so much to me right now (and for the past several months) that I need that reminder almost daily- that it’s all in the Lord’s time. I love the part when he says how even the very righteous have to wait on the Lord. I tend to think that I’m doing everything I need to be doing, and my desire is righteous and good. So WHY is it not working out RIGHT NOW!? Great reminder that there is a lot more to it than that. This talk gives me great peace!

  7. Laurnce
    January 12, 2012, 13:50

    Being 2 months older than Elder Hales, I felt a bit of a bond with him. His absence in the speaking line up in the Apr. conference made me wonder if he was having health issues. I understand that during the Oct. conference, he had on a leg brace and was therefor seated during his talk. With that in mind, gives additional feelings and meaning to the word “opportunity” that he used in the 2nd paragraph. One can only guess what was and may still be going on with his health, but he chose to use the word opportunity that he had to learn more about ” the Savior’s atoning sacrifice”,. As I listened to his talk again, the use of that word gave additional meaning and understanding to the remainder of the article.

  8. In your patience possess ye your souls. (Luke 21:19).

    I have really worked on this over the years as I found that the stress and worry were often for no reason. It now drives husband crazy that I can be so patient.

  9. All through the week, I listen to one talk over and over. While I attend to chores in the morning, I play the audio once or twice. I enjoy and am so thankful for the way the gentle words of the Lord’s chosen servants calm me and direct my days in a kinder, more purposeful manner. Then I write about it on my blog at the end of the week. I’m thankful you ran with the inspiration to host this book club. It has to be the most meaningful book club in which I’ve participated.

    “Why is it that the Son of God and His holy prophets and all the faithful Saints have trials and tribulations, even when they are trying to do Heavenly Father’s will? Why is it so hard, especially for them?…Does this mean we will always understand our challenges…we realize that the purpose of our life on earth is to grow, develop, and be strengthened through our own experiences…mortal challenges allow us and our Heavenly Father to see whether we will exercise our agency to follow His Son…afflictions will come in all shapes and sizes…we will still find it challenging to wait upon the Lord, especially when we cannot fully understand His plan and purposes for us…Waiting upon the Lord gives us a priceless opportunity to discover that there are many who wait upon us….o show patience, love, and understanding…to show gratitude and compassion…to be tolerant, merciful, and forgiving…to love them as the Savior has loved each one of us…Every one of us is more beloved to the Lord than we can possibly understand or imagine. Let us therefore be kinder to one another and kinder toward ourselves.”

    One daughter is making wonderful choices in her life but still finds life hard in many ways. Worry and stress over her trials often rear their ugly heads and crowd out the peace and security that can be had through the Spirit. Then she calms down and remembers the promise that everything will turn out right. We often discuss this idea. We are here on earth to learn things that cannot be learned if our lives flow along perfectly. We don’t get a get out of jail free card for being good. It is far from helpful to ask, why me? The question to ask is, why not me? Even though we struggle with problems large and small, we are far better of than many others. Generally, we compare our weaknesses to the strengths of others. Instead we ought not be so judging of others and so hard on ourselves. Focusing on developing patience, love, understanding, gratitude, compassion, tolerance, mercy, forgiveness, service, charity, and a willingness to accept God’s will as we endure our trials, we fulfill our true destinies . Whether our spiritual nature is more like Mary, Martha, or the Good Samaritan, we should embrace this character and build upon it. It is then that we will find the courage to “…wait upon Him by pressing forward in faith, that we may say in our prayers, ‘Thy will be done,’ and return to Him with honor.”

  10. Isaiah 40:31 has always been a favorite scripture of mine. I loved hearing from an apostle what it means to wait upon the Lord. I had a religion professor tell us to pay extra close attention when a general authority says something like “This scripture means…” One of the things Elder Hales mentioned was “In the scriptures, the word wait means to hope, to anticipate, and to trust.” I feel like this is such a great talk to read and re-read when we are going through hard trials.

  11. As I read this talk I was struck with his use of the phrase “wait upon the Lord.” It seems that most talks about adversity, focus on being patient and enduring to the end. For some reason, I like wait so much better! And I loved his definitions, which included hope, anticipate, trust (mentioned by Mel), but also diligence, confidence and faith.

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