Elder Oaks on overcoming obstacles

Dallin H. OaksWhen we face obstacles that appear to be impossible to overcome even in the fulfillment of righteous responsibilities, we should remember that when we are involved in the work of the Lord, the obstacles before us are never as great as the power behind us. We should reach out and climb. Handholds will only be found by hands that are outstretched. Footholds are only for feet that are on the move.

We are told that faith precedes the miracle. We have also learned that personal efforts precede it. These words of President Spencer W. Kimball convey that message: “Let’s go forward!”

Nothing is impossible to those who keep God’s commandments and follow his directions. But the blessings that carry us over obstacles do not precede our efforts; they follow them. The Liahona was given to guide Lehi and his children, but it came after years in the desert, not when they were still in Jerusalem. The word of the Lord on the organization of the Camp of Israel (see D&C 136) didn’t come in Nauvoo. It came on the west bank of the Missouri near present-day Omaha, almost a year after the Saints had left Nauvoo.

What do we do when we face obstacles in the fulfillment of righteous responsibilities? We reach out and climb! The blessings that solve problems and carry us over obstacles come to persons who are on the move.

Dallin H. Oaks, “Reach Out and Climb!,” New Era, Aug 1985, 4