Quotes on Endurance

I have fought a good fight; I have finished my course; I have kept the faith.  Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness.  (2 Timothy 4:7) — The Apostle Paul

One of my favorite “cry out during the night” children’s stories is told of a four-year-old boy who came during the middle of the night to his father and mother’s bedroom, sobbing with great enthusiasm.  When his mother drew him near and put her arms around him to give comfort, saying, “What happened?” he said, “I fell out of bed.”  She asked, “How did you fall out of bed?”  And he cried, “Because I wasn’t in far enough.”

Let me just say in passing that it has been my experience that most people who fall out of the Church do so because they were not in far enough. — Elder Marvin J. Ashton, “Know He Is There,” Ensign, February 1994, p. 51

If we are patient in our afflictions, endure them well, and wait upon the Lord to learn the lessons of mortality, the Lord will be with us to strengthen us unto the end of our days: “He that shall [faithfully] endure unto the end, the same shall be saved” (Mark 13:13) and return with honor to our Heavenly Father.

We learn to endure to the end by learning to finish our current responsibilities, and we simply continue doing it all of our lives.  We cannot expect to learn endurance in our later years if we have developed the habit of quitting when things get difficult now. . . .

There is more to endurance than just surviving and waiting for the end to overtake us.  To endure to the end takes great faith. — Robert D. Hales, “Behold, We Count Them Happy Which Endure,” Ensign, May 1998, p. 77

If certain mortal experiences were cut short, it would be like pulling up a flower to see how the roots are doing.  Put another way, too many anxious openings of the oven door, and the cake falls instead of rising. . . .

Patient endurance is to be distinguished from merely being “acted upon.”  Endurance is more than pacing up and down within the cell of our circumstance; it is not only acceptance of the things allotted to us, it is to “act for ourselves” by magnifying what is allotted to us. (See Alma 29:3, 6.)

If, for instance, we are always taking our temperature to see if we are happy, we will not be. If we are constantly comparing to see if things are fair, we are not only being unrealistic, we are being unfair to ourselves.

Therefore, true enduring represents not merely the passage of time, but the passage of the soul – and not merely from A to B, but sometimes all the way from A to Z.  To endure in faith and doeth God’s will (see D&C 63:20; D&C 101:35) therefore involves much more than putting up with a circumstance. . . .

Patient endurance permits us to cling to our faith in the Lord and our faith in His timing when we are being tossed about by the surf of circumstance.  Even when a seeming undertow grasps us, somehow, in the tumbling, we are being carried forward, though battered and bruised. — Elder Neal A. Maxwell, “Endure It Well,” Ensign, May 1990, p. 34

Enduring to the end implies “patient continuance in well doing” (Romans 2:7), striving to keep the commandments (see 2 Nephi 31:10), and doing the works of righteousness (see D&C 59:23).  It requires sacrifice and hard work.  To endure to the end, we need to trust our Father in Heaven and make wise choices, including paying our tithes and offerings, honoring our temple covenants, and serving the Lord and one another willingly and faithfully in our Church callings and responsibilities.  It means strength of character, selflessness, and humility; it means integrity and honesty to the Lord and our fellowmen.  It means making our homes strong places of defense and a refuge against worldly evils; it means loving and honoring our spouses and children. — President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Ensign, Nov. 2007, pp. 20-21

When the Latter-day Saints make up their minds to endure, for the kingdom of God’s sake, whatsoever shall come, whether poverty or riches, whether sickness or to be driven by mobs, they will say it is all right, and in all things, and serve Him to the end of their lives, according to the best of their ability. . . . If you have not made up your minds for this, the quicker you do so the better. — Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses 1:338

Be assured that if you but hold on, believe in Him, and remain faithful in keeping the commandments, one day you will experience for yourselves the promises revealed to the Apostle Paul:  “Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.”  (I Corinthians 2:9) — President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, “You Matter to Him,” Ensign, Nov. 2011, p. 22

To those who are doing the commonplace work of the world but are wondering about the value of their accomplishments; to those who are the workhorses of this Church, who are furthering the work of the Lord in so many quiet but significant ways; to those who are the salt of the earth and the strength of the world and the backbone of each nation – to you we would simply express our admiration.  If you endure to the end, and if you are valiant in the testimony of Jesus, you will achieve true greatness and will live in the presence of our Father in Heaven. — President Howard W. Hunter, “True Greatness,” Ensign, May 1982, p. 19

If had the power, I would impress every member of the Church with the transcendent import to himself of strictly obeying the principles of the gospel.  In these remarks I hope I can so present this matter that at least one of you will join with me in a resolution to make a greater effort to do so in the future than we have ever made in the past.

With the great prize of eternal life set before us, and in light of the emphasis the Lord has put upon the fact that this eternal life is attainable only upon condition that we “endure to the end, in following the example of the Son of the living God,” it does seem to me, that no Latter-day Saint should be content to stand day after day in the same place on the way to eternal life. 

 . . . Because there are so many people about us who have no vision of the goal to which we are inspired by the gospel, we are in danger of becoming surfeited with the things of the world and are apt to slacken in our daily striving to move onward in our quest for eternal life. It has therefore been one of the burdens of Church leadership in all dispensations to encourage the Saints to keep these things constantly in their remembrance. — President Marion G. Romney, Conference Report, Oct. 1956, p. 16

It has been said by Bruce Barton that, “When we’re through changing, we’re through.”  There is no age when we are too old or too young or just too middle-aged to change.  Perhaps old age really comes when a person finally gives up the right, challenge, and joy of changing.  We should remain teachable.  How easy it is to become set.  We must be willing to establish goals whether we are sixty, seventy, fifty, or fifteen.  Maintain a zest for life. Never should there be a time when we are unwilling to improve ourselves through meaningful change. — Elder Marvin J. Ashton, “Progress through Change,” Ensign, November 1979, p. 61

Most people never run far enough on their first wind to find out if they’ve got a second.  Give your dreams all you’ve got and you’ll be amazed at the energy that comes out of you. — William James

Continuous effort – not strength or intelligence – is the key to unlocking our potential. — Winston Churchill

The wayside of business is full of brilliant men who started out with a spurt, and lacked the stamina to finish.  Their places were taken by patient and unshowy plodders who never knew when to quit. — J. R. Todd

I have the simplest of tastes.  I am always satisfied with the best. — Oscar Wilde

Sometimes I lie awake at night and I ask, “Is life a multiple choice test or is it a true or false test?” . . . . Then a voice comes to me out of the dark and says, “We hate to tell you this, but life is a thousand word essay. — Charles M. Schulz, creator of the comic strip “Peanuts”

I do not want to know what you will hope for.  I want to know what you will work for. I do not want your sympathy for the needs of humanity.  I want your muscle.  As the wagon driver said when they came to a long, hard hill: “Them that’s going on with us, get out and push.  Them that ain’t, get out of the way.” — Robert Fulghum

For anything worth having one must pay the price; and the price is always work, patience, love, self-sacrifice. — John Burroughs

I’ve got a great ambition to die of exhaustion rather than boredom. — Angus Grossart

Sometimes one pays most for the things one gets for nothing. — Albert Einstein

On that cold February day when the frozen ground was broken to start the work on the Salt Lake Temple, Brigham Young spoke with characteristically poignant humor as he told the recent converts attending the ground dedication to not be discouraged because they had not had all the privileges that many of the older members had had, of being robbed, and driven and mobbed and plundered of everything they had on earth, for he would promise all who would remain faithful, that they . . . should be proved in all things. — Elder Jeffrey R. and Patricia T. Holland, “However Long and Hard the Road,” BYU Devotional, January 18, 1983

To those who are doing the commonplace work of the world but are wondering about the value of their accomplishments; to those who are the workhorses of this Church, who are furthering the work of the Lord in so many quiet but significant ways; to those who are the salt of the earth and the strength of the world and the backbone of each nation – to you we would simply express our admiration.  If you endure to the end, and if you are valiant in the testimony of Jesus, you will achieve true greatness and will live in the presence of our Father in Heaven. — President Howard W. Hunter, “True Greatness,” Ensign, May 1982, p. 19

Salvation does not come all at once; we are commanded to be perfect even as our Father in heaven is perfect.  It will take us ages to accomplish this end, for there will be greater progress beyond the grave, and it will be there that the faithful will overcome all things, and  receive all things, even the fullness of the Father’s glory.  I believe the Lord meant just what he said: that we should be perfect, as our Father in heaven is perfect.             That will not come all at once, but line upon line and precept upon precept, example upon example, and even then not as long as we live in this  mortal life, for we will have to go even beyond the grave before we reach that perfection and shall be  like God.  But here we lay the foundation.  Here is where we are taught these simple truths of the gospel of Jesus Christ, in this probationary state, to prepare us for that perfection. The Teachings of Lorenzo Snow, 7 April 1879; Journal of Discourses, 20:189-90

Enduring to the end implies “patient continuance in well doing” (Romans 2:7), striving to keep the commandments (see 2 Nephi 31:10), and doing the works of righteousness (see D&C 59:23).  It requires sacrifice and hard work.  To endure to the end, we need to trust our Father in Heaven and make wise choices, including paying our tithes and offerings, honoring our temple covenants, and serving the Lord and one another willingly and faithfully in our Church callings and responsibilities.  It means strength of character, selflessness, and humility; it means integrity and honesty to the Lord and our fellowmen. It means making our homes strong places of defense and a refuge against worldly evils; it means loving and honoring our spouses and children.  By doing our best to endure to the end, a beautiful refinement will come into our lives.  We will learn to “do good to them that hate [us], and pray for them which despitefully use [us]” (Matthew 5:44).  The blessings that come to us from enduring to the end in this life are real and very significant, and for the life to come they are beyond our comprehension. — President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, “Have We Not Reason to Rejoice? General Conference, October 2007

If we will go forward, never losing sight of our goal, speaking ill of no one, living the great principles we know to be true, this cause will roll on in majesty and power to fill the earth.  Doors now closed to the preaching of the gospel will be opened. . . .

I see a wonderful future in a very uncertain world.  If we will cling to our values, if we will build on our inheritance, if we will walk in obedience before the Lord, if we will simply live the gospel we will be blessed in a magnificent and wonderful way. . . .Great has been our past, wonderful is our present, glorious can be our future. — President Gordon B. Hinckley, “Look to the Future,” General Conference, October 1997

Don’t you quit.  You keep walking, you keep trying, there is help and happiness ahead.  Some blessings come soon.  Some come late.  Some don’t come until heaven.  But for those who embrace the gospel of Jesus Christ, they come.  It will be alright in the end.  Trust God and believe in Good Things to Come. — Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, “An High Priest of Good Things to Come, October 1999

Learning to endure times of disappointment, suffering, and sorrow is part of our on-the-job training.  These experiences, while often difficult to bear at the time, are precisely the kinds of experiences that stretch our understanding, build our character, and increase our compassion for others. — Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin,”Come What May, and Love It,” Ensign, November 2008, p. 27


But back in the last wagon, not always could they see the Brethren way out in front, and the blue heaven was often shut out from their sight by heavy, dense clouds of the dust of the earth.  Yet day after day, they of the last wagon pressed forward, worn and tired, footsore, sometimes almost disheartened, borne up by their faith that God loved them, that the restored gospel was true, and that the Lord led and directed the Brethren out in front. Sometimes, they in the last wagon glimpsed, for an instant, when faith surged strongest, the glories of a celestial world, but it seemed so far away and the vision so quickly vanished because want and weariness and heartache and sometimes discouragement were always pressing so near.

When the vision faded, their hearts sank.  But they prayed again and pushed on, with little praise, with not too much encouragement, and never with adulation.  For there was nearly always something wrong with the last wagon or with its team – the off ox was a little lame in the right front shoulder; the hub of the left front wheel was often hot; the tire of the hind wheel on the same side was loose.  So corrective counsel, sometimes strong reproof, was the rule, because the wagon must not delay the whole train.

But yet in that last wagon there was devotion and loyalty and integrity, and above and beyond everything else, faith in the Brethren and in God’s power and goodness.  For had not the Lord said that not even a sparrow fall[s] unnoticed by the Father [see Matt. 10:29], and were they not of more value than sparrows?  And then they had their testimony, burning always like an eternal fire on a holy altar, that the restored gospel was true, that Joseph was a prophet of God, and that Brigham was Joseph’s chosen successor.  — President J. Reuben Clark, Jr., “To Them of the Last Wagon,” General Conference, 5 October 1947; Reprinted, Ensign, July 1997, p. 35

From Gethsemane and Calvary there are many lessons we need to apply to our own lives.  We, too, at times may wonder if we have been forgotten and forsaken.  Hopefully, we will do as the Master did and acknowledge that God is still there and never doubt that sublime reality – even though we may wonder and might desire to avoid some of life’s experiences.  We may at times, if we are not careful, try to pray away pain or what seems like an impending tragedy, but which is, in reality, an opportunity.  We must do as Jesus did in that respect – also preface our prayers by saying, “If it be possible,” let the trial pass from us – by saying, “Nevertheless, not as I will, but as thou wilt,” and bowing in a sense of serenity to our Father in heaven’s wisdom, because at times God will not be able to let us pass by a trial or a challenge.  If we were allowed to bypass certain trials, everything that had gone on up to that moment in our lives would be wiped out.  It is because he loves us that at times he will not intercede as we may wish him to.  That, too, we learn from Gethsemane and from Calvary.

It is interesting to me, brothers and sisters, to note that among the qualities of a saint is the capacity to develop patience and to cope with the things that life inflicts upon us.  That capacity brings together two prime attributes – patience and endurance.  These are qualities, in the process of giving service to mankind that most people reject or undervalue.  Most people would gladly serve mankind if somehow they could get it over with once, preferably with applause and recognition.  But, for the sake of righteousness, to endure, to be patient in the midst of affliction, in the midst of being misunderstood, and in the midst of suffering – that is sainthood! — Elder Neal A. Maxwell, “But For a Small Moment,” BYU Fireside, September 1, 1974

However much faith to obey God we now have, we will need to strengthen it continually and keep it refreshed constantly.  We can do that by deciding now to be more quick to obey and more determined to endure.  Learning to start early and to be steady are the keys to spiritual preparation.  Procrastination and inconsistency are its mortal enemies. — President Henry B. Eyring, “Spiritual Preparedness: Start Early and Be Steady,” Ensign, November 2005, p. 38

If for a while the harder you try, the harder it gets, take heart.  So it has been with the best people who ever lived. — Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, “The Inconvenient Messiah,” BYU Speeches, February 15, 1982

If we constantly focus only on the stones in our mortal path, we will almost surely miss the beautiful flower or cool stream provided by the loving Father who outlined our journey.  Each day can bring more joy than sorrow when our mortal and spiritual eyes are open to God’s goodness.  Joy in the gospel is not something that begins only in the next life.  It is our privilege now, this very day.  We must never allow our burdens to obscure our blessings.  There will always be more blessings than burdens – even if some days it doesn’t seem so.  Jesus said, “I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.”  Enjoy those blessings right now.  They are yours and always will be. — Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, “What I Wish Every New Member Knew – and Every Longtime Member Remembered,” Ensign, Oct 2006, pp. 10-16

This year marks the 200th anniversary of the birth of John Rowe Moyle.  John was a convert to the Church who left his home in England and traveled to the Salt Lake Valley as part of a handcart company.  He built a home for his family in a small town a valley away from Salt Lake City.  John was an accomplished stonecutter and, because of this skill, was asked to work on the Salt Lake Temple.

Every Monday John left home at two o’clock in the morning and walked six hours in order to be at his post on time.  On Friday he would leave his work at five o’clock in the evening and walk almost until midnight before arriving home.  He did this year after year.

One day, while he was doing his chores at home, a cow kicked him in the leg, causing a compound fracture. With limited medical resources, the only option was to amputate the broken leg.  So John’s family and friends strapped him onto a door and, with a bucksaw, cut off his leg a few inches from the knee.

In spite of the crude surgery, the leg started to heal.  Once John could sit up in bed, he began carving a wooden leg with an ingenious joint that served as an ankle to an artificial foot.  Walking on this device was extremely painful, but John did not give up, building up his endurance until he could make the 22-mile (35-km) journey to the Salt Lake Temple each week, where he continued his work.

His hands carved the words “Holiness to the Lord” that stand today as a golden marker to all who visit the Salt Lake Temple.

John did not do this for the praise of man.  Neither did he shirk his duty, even though he had every reason to do so. He knew what the Lord expected him to do.

Years later, John’s grandson Henry D. Moyle was called as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve and, eventually, served in the First Presidency of the Church. President Moyle’s service in these callings was honorable, but his grandfather John’s service, though somewhat less public, is just as pleasing to the Lord.  John’s character, his legacy of sacrifice, serves as a banner of faithfulness and an ensign of duty to his family and to the Church.  John Rowe Moyle understood the meaning of “lift where you stand.” — President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, “Lift Where You Stand,” Priesthood Session, Ensign, November 2008, pp. 55-56

There is nothing that we are enduring that Jesus does not understand, and He waits for us to go to our Heavenly Father in prayer.  If we will be obedient and if we are diligent, our prayers will be answered, our problems will diminish, our fears will dissipate, light will come upon us, the darkness of despair will be dispersed, and we will be close to the Lord. — Elder Robert D. Hales, “Behold, We Count Them Happy Which Endure,” Ensign, May 1998, p. 75

We must recognize that excellence and quality are a reflection of how we feel about ourselves and about life and about God.  If we don’t care much about these basic things, then such not caring carries over into the work we do, and our work becomes shabby and shoddy.  Real craftsmanship, regardless of the skill involved, reflects real caring, and real caring reflects our attitude about ourselves, about our fellowmen, and about life. — President Spencer W. Kimball, Ensign, February 1978