So if we keep seeking out what is right,
moving on after being set back,
searching out what keeps us strong.
Searching out, and always building up the things that we lack.
This path we choose is not the easiest to walk upon
And knowing that, I am more eager to continue on
because I know that when I reach the end
I’ll be better than before
“Searching, Seeking, Reaching, Always” by We Came As Romans
Life is a process. Whether it’s literally moving from one place to another or wanting to achieve something, it must be done in steps. I’m not always a patient person. … Actually… I’m often not a patient person. I’m present-minded, and it’s hard for me to wait for things to happen, because for whatever reason it’s difficult for me to grasp how something can come about if I’m not presently seeing it in motion. Understanding that life isn’t meant to be instantaneous can help us to work through our goals in life.
The prophet Joseph Smith once counseled,
“When you climb up a ladder, you must begin at the bottom, and ascend step by step, until you arrive at the top; and so it is with the principles of the Gospel—you must begin with the first, and go on until you learn all the principles of exaltation. But it will be a great while after you have passed through the veil before you will have learned them”
We don’t know much. We may struggle comprehending God or Christ’s gospel. We might be frustrated at our lack of spiritual progress. Why does it seem I have no faith? Why can I never learn from my mistakes? Maybe we’re trying to repent and wish it could be done in an instant. Perhaps we’re trying to become more patient, or more obedient. Perhaps we’re trying to become better at our relationships. A better friend. A better sibling. A better son or daughter. A better parent. A better spouse. A better disciple of Christ.
As Joseph Smith said, the principles of Christ’s gospel are like a ladder. They must be taken one step at a time. Learning how to better ourselves comes through mastering each step. You don’t take the next step up if your foot isn’t securely on the one below. Yes, occasionally a slip-up occurs. It’s inevitable. But we simply work harder to plant our feet on that step, making sure we’re immovable, and then we can continue to ascend in whatever we’re trying to achieve, be it something specific or something general.
I know this to be true, and I second Paul’s words in Romans 5:3-4,
And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;
It’s not easy having to go through the process, and the obstacles are sometimes constantly in our way. But hardship helps us to be patient. Being patient gives us the knowledge that enduring works, and when that happens we have a better hope. A hope the next step is possible to make, and that in due time we’ll have made it to the top of the ladder.
Remember that as you ascend to the next step in the ladder, you are better than before.