From an April 2002 general conference address.
Faith Lights the Way23968_000_003
As a young man, President Gordon B. Hinckley rode trains that hurtled through narrow mountain passes at night. It helped him understand how the light of faith can guide us through dark times of discouragement.
As each man or woman walks the way of life there may come dark seasons of doubt, of discouragement, of disillusionment. A few see ahead by the light of faith, but many stumble along in the darkness and even become lost.
My call to you is a call to faith, that faith which “is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen” (Heb. 11:1), as Paul described it.
Long ago I worked for one of the railroads whose tracks threaded the passes through these western mountains. I frequently rode the trains. It was in the days when there were steam locomotives. Those great monsters of the rails were huge and fast and dangerous. I often wondered how the engineer dared the long journey through the night. Then I came to realize that it was not one long journey, but rather a constant continuation of a short journey. The engine had a powerful headlight that made bright the way for a distance of 400 or 500 yards (350 to 450 m). The engineer saw only that distance, and that was enough, because it was constantly before him all through the night into the dawn of the new day.
The Lord has spoken of this process. He said: “That which doth not edify [teach] is not of God, and is darkness.
“That which is of God is light; and he that receiveth light, and continueth in God, receiveth more light; and that light groweth brighter and brighter until the perfect day” (D&C 50:23–24).
And so it is with our eternal journey. We take one step at a time. In doing so we reach toward the unknown, but faith lights the way. If we will cultivate that faith, we shall never walk in darkness.