Friday, March 25, 2011

Patience... A Great Blessing

What do we do when we want something, but don't get it when we want it? We get frustrated, angry, and impatient, right? That's where patience comes in. We all know that famous quote, "patience is a virtue." Everyone should develop this characteristic, or become better at it because it will benefit ourselves now, and throughout our lives. President Dieter F. Uchtdorf gave a talk in the April 2010 General Conference on patience, entitled "Continue in Patience". He gave an example in which he says:

"In the 1960s, a professor at Stanford University began a modest experiment testing the willpower of four-year-old children. He placed them before a large marshmallow and then told them they could eat it right away or, if they waited for 15 minutes, they could have two marshmallows.

"He then left the children alone and watched what happened behind a two-way mirror. Some of the children ate the marshmallow immediately; some could wait only a few minutes before giving in to temptation. Only 30 percent were able to wait.

"It was a mildly interesting experiment, and the professor moved on to other areas of research, for, in his own words, 'there are only so many things you can do with kids trying not to eat marshmallows.' But as time went on, he kept track of the children and began to notice an interesting correlation: the children who could not wait struggled later in life and had more behavioral problems, while those who waited tended to be more positive and better motivated, have higher grades and incomes, and have healthier relationships."

What a great example he gives to those who are patient. This can apply to all ages. When we want something and are willing to put the desire for it on hold, we will benefit from the sacrifice and will have success in many aspects of our lives.

However, there is more to just waiting for what we want. We have to put forth the effort, to work for our  desires instead of just expecting it to just show up in our hands. In that same talk, President Dieter F. Uchtdorf gave a splendid definition of patience: "Patience means active waiting and enduring. It means staying with something and doing all that we can--working, hoping, and exercising faith; bearing hardship with fortitude, even when the desires of our hearts are delayed. Patience is not simply enduring; it is enduring well!"

May we all strive to do all we we can to develop this characteristic. It will only improve our lives!

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