This is a talk that I have loved since Elder Wirthlin gave it 5 years ago.
When I was young I loved playing sports, and I have many fond memories of those days. But not all of them are pleasant. I remember one day after my football team lost a tough game, I came home feeling discouraged. My mother was there. She listened to my sad story. She taught her children to trust in themselves and each other, not blame others for their misfortunes, and give their best effort in everything they attempted.
When we fell down, she expected us to pick ourselves up and get going again. So the advice my mother gave to me then wasn’t altogether unexpected. It has stayed with me all my life.
“Joseph,” she said, “come what may, and love it.”
I have often reflected on that counsel.
I think she may have meant that every life has peaks and shadows and times when it seems that the birds don’t sing and bells don’t ring. Yet in spite of discouragement and adversity, those who are happiest seem to have a way of learning from difficult times, becoming stronger, wiser, and happier as a result…
How little I knew then of what awaited me in later years. But whenever my steps led through seasons of sadness and sorrow, my mother’s words often came back to me: “Come what may, and love it.”
How can we love days that are filled with sorrow? We can’t—at least not in the moment. I don’t think my mother was suggesting that we suppress discouragement or deny the reality of pain. I don’t think she was suggesting that we smother unpleasant truths beneath a cloak of pretended happiness. But I do believe that the way we react to adversity can be a major factor in how happy and successful we can be in life.
If we approach adversities wisely, our hardest times can be times of greatest growth, which in turn can lead toward times of greatest happiness.
Although my mother has long since passed to her eternal reward, her words are always with me. I still remember her advice to me given on that day long ago when my team lost a football game: “Come what may, and love it.”
I know why there must be opposition in all things. Adversity, if handled correctly, can be a blessing in our lives. We can learn to love it.
As we look for humor, seek for the eternal perspective, understand the principle of compensation, and draw near to our Heavenly Father, we can endure hardship and trial. We can say, as did my mother, “Come what may, and love it.”
Dealing with the unknown of mental illness has really worn on me at times. By adopting the motto “Come what may and love it” I’ve been able to better deal with what comes my way. Instead of worrying about the future and what tomorrow will bring if I instead have a come what may and love it attitude I’m so much happier.
We’ve learned to laugh and find the silver lining in things.
I’ve always been a huge fan of the movie Pollyanna. I love the quote in her locket
“When you look for the bad in mankind, expecting to find it, you surely will”. – Abraham Lincoln.
I believe the reverse is also true. If we look for the good we can and will find it. So rather than dwelling on the negative and the unknown I try my best to see the world through rose colored glasses. I look for the good. I focus on the positive. I play the “glad game”.
So here are a few of the things I can be glad about.
I’ve seen miracles.
I’ve had my prayers answered.
I’ve felt the Lord’s love for me and my son.
I know that whatever the outcome may be it is going to be ok.
I’ve felt the love and concern of family and friends.
I’ve got to know some amazing doctors and nurses who truly care.
My faith has increased.
I have learned so much about so many different things.
I can empathize with others who are going through trials.
I’ve tasted the bitter which has helped me to appreciate the sweet.
I’ve learned to be grateful for what I have.
I celebrate the small things like a good symptom free day.
Come what may I will love it!