Time-Out to Pray


(Adapted from an address given in general conference on April 5, 1980. See Ensign, May 1980, pages 38–39.)
Counsel with the Lord in all thy doings (Alma 37:37).

One night while I was watching an NCAA championship basketball game, I heard one of the players call out that familiar word, “Time!” The team ran to the sidelines to receive some instructions from the man who could give them some help—the coach.

Life, you know, is a little like “the big game.” There are times when you and I need to call time-out. Have you been smart enough to call time-out to ask the coach for help?

A small boy was trying to lift a heavy stone but couldn’t budge it. His father, watching very interestedly, said, “Are you sure you’re using all of your strength?”

“Yes, I am!” the boy cried.

“No, you’re not,” said the father. “You haven’t asked me to help you.”

Well, let me just tell you that however tight the game seems at the moment, I know the Coach and I know that He can help. There is a personal and loving God who understands the game of life. He understands you and me. And He understands what you and I need now to help in our lives. Talking to Him is an easy thing, really. All you have to do is call time-out to pray. And then be prepared to listen.

Are you aware that all through history great leaders have called time-out? Washington at Valley Forge, Lincoln seeking answers in the Civil War, Joseph Smith in the Grove. God bless you, my young friends, to have the wisdom and strength to call time-out and visit with your Heavenly Father. He really lives, as does His Son.

[illustrations] Illustrated by Larry Winborg