One of the easiest traps to fall into as a typical human being is that of inadequacy and loneliness. This life is full of hard times coupled with incredibly high expectations; it is more common than not to feel that sincere efforts are wasted and simply do not measure up or matter enough. As Exodus 18:18 says, “…for this thing is too heavy for thee; thou art not able to perform it thyself alone.” The key word in this verse is “alone.” It is not possible to do most things alone, but with the help of the Savior and the enabling power of His infinite atonement, the weight need not be “too heavy.” God-given potential is, in reality, attainable when faith and trust in the Lord are part of the process.
The Savior gave the perfect instruction manual to becoming perfect like Him in two sections of scripture: Matthew 5 of The New Testament and 3 Nephi 12 of The Book of Mormon. Here he laid out a continuous stair-step pattern for all of God’s children to follow with the end goal of becoming a true disciple of Christ. One of the steps that Jesus asks all people to take is found in verse 6 of Matthew 5, which reads: “Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.” This hunger and thirst after righteousness is fueled by a constant effort to become better, correct everyday mistakes, and do the little things that invite the Spirit, such as prayer and scripture study. This is a lifelong process that leads to incredible blessings, such as “being filled.” The diligent efforts to be good and do good create a filling- the Lord’s love and light fills in the cracks of doubt and inadequacy. His perfection, or wholeness, is mirrored in daily attempts to be like Him. He is there every step of the way and His strength makes up for mortal weakness.
Alma’s prayer in Alma 31 is an inspired example of relying on His merits; verses 30, 31, and 32 say: “…O Lord, wilt thou give me strength, that I may bear with mine infirmities. For I am infirm… O Lord, my heart is exceedingly sorrowful; wilt thou comfort my soul in Christ. O Lord, wilt thou grant unto me that I may have strength, that I may suffer with patience these afflictions which shall come upon me… O Lord, wilt thou comfort my soul, and give unto me success…” I know that Jesus Christ will provide strength where there is weakness, hope where there is doubt, comfort where there is affliction, and success where there is failure. His love is complete and perfect; His desire is that each of us might become a finished and polished work of art after the molding and creation of His hands. All that is required is faith and consistent change.