Can I just tell you how much I'm loving my Harry Potter running? I was telling Terry how guilty I felt that I wasn't listening to something more meaningful like the scriptures, or conference talks, but when I listen to Harry Potter, it takes me to a different world, and I don't think about how tired I am, how much I still need to be doing, and how little I seem to be accomplishing. I just run, listening to the adventures of a teenage boy.
I was thinking about the story of Harry Potter. I was thinking about how in these stories, Harry is just a normal kid, nothing to spectacular in the wizarding world, and yet he has all these spectacular things happen to him. Most of these things are horrible, very trying things, and he just keeps moving along. His trials from the age of eleven, through the age of sixteen made him ready for the time when he would have to face his greatest trial, the battle for good with Lord Voldemort.
Lest you think I'm the biggest nerd around, I was thinking about some of the other books/movies I've been watching with the same theme of just ordinary people, fighting their own fights against the hard and trying things of the world. I just happen to be somewhat immersed in Harry Potter right now.
And because I was also running, it reminded me of when I was training for my marathon, and the first time I ran 20 miles. Do you remember this?
That is a bloody foot.
My toe nail was a little long and cut into the toe next to it. As I was running, I felt some pain in my foot, but, I mean, I was running 20 miles that day so wasn't a little pain to be expected? So when I finally got done and looked down to see this:
I was a little concerned. All that red.... blood. Yikes.
My point to all this is, we go through trials. Some of us, in fact most of us, are just your average joe, going through life, trying to do the best we can, as we manage the things that are happening to us, either by our own choices, or just because that is our lot in life.
There are so many people close to me, going through some really hard trials right now. Families breaking up, health crisis', loss of employment, losing faith, death; how do you make it through all these horrible things? How do we live through the heartbreak so immense that it feels crushing?
You just do.
We do as Elder Holland suggests to us:
"Hold on. Keep trying. God loves you. Things will improve. Christ comes to you in His “more excellent ministry” with a future of “better promises.” He is your “high priest of good things to come.”
He goes on to tell us:
“Don’t give up, boy. Don’t you quit. You keep walking. You keep trying. There is help and happiness ahead—a lot of it—30 years of it now, and still counting. You keep your chin up. It will be all right in the end. Trust God and believe in good things to come.”
Our days just keep coming. Time keeps moving on, and life rolls forward. Find your strength in that which doesn't change, Jesus Christ. Each trial that we pass through makes a stronger, more capable person, that we will be ready for the next trial, and the next, and the next. Trials won't end, but our capability to handle them will be increased if we anchor ourselves to the gospel of Jesus Christ.
And that's my story of Harry Potter, running, and trials in life.
*The talk I reference is "An High Priest of Good Times to Come" by Jeffrey R. Holland, Oct. 1999. Watch it here.