For the Strength of Youth says to “avoid frequent dates with the same person” when you first start dating, but when I was 16, I ignored that.
I had a girlfriend. She was really nice, but it wasn’t the right time. I started getting spiritual promptings that I shouldn’t be in a relationship, but I ignored them for a long time. Eventually, she went to college and I realized I wasn’t doing what I was supposed to.
Not living my standards had led to some tough times. It was hard to focus on the things I needed to. So, just before my senior year of high school, I resolved to follow all the principles in For the Strength of Youth as much as I could, especially when it came to dating. I didn’t want to have a girlfriend before my mission.
Immediately I started seeing the benefits. I was very public about not wanting a girlfriend. Girls started asking me out on dates because they knew I would respect them and that I wouldn’t try to make things serious. It was a really fun year and strengthened my testimony of For the Strength of Youth.
However, eventually I started getting close to a girl I knew. We became really good friends and I started to have feelings for her. I realized when we spent too much time together, it was harder for me to focus on my mission. I knew I had been prompted to not have a girlfriend, and I wanted to follow that prompting.
“Sorry,” I said one night. “I’m not doing this.” She totally understood, but it was really hard. I basically gave up my best friend to focus on my mission. But I knew it was the right thing for me. Like Nephi said, if this is what God wanted me to do, He was going to help me out with it (see 1 Nephi 3:7).
And He did. Over the next few days, I just felt strength and peace from Heavenly Father. It helped me focus on my mission a lot more, and I started feeling myself progress spiritually much faster than I had been before. It was hard, but I had done the right thing, and I felt a lot of blessings from it. And once again, it confirmed my testimony of For the Strength of Youth.
Now I’m probably annoying about it. I’m always telling my little sister to not get a boyfriend, but it’s just because I’ve just seen that my life has been so much better when I follow the prophets’ counsel. This experience really inspired “Thy Will Be Done.”
The most meaningful part for me are the lines:
Thy will be done
Oh, Lord, not mine,
Whether in brightest day or darkest night.
It’s easier to say “Thy will be done” when a lot of good things are happening, but it’s harder when hard things are happening. And the next line is:
And give me strength to carry on;
Thy will be done.
That one is so personal to me.
When I was going through that experience I just had to say, “Please just give me strength. Just please help me through this.” I also love the chorus.
Though I don’t always understand
What Thou hast willed, what Thou hast planned.
Sometimes you may know why the Lord wants you to do something, but sometimes it won’t make any sense to you. That’s why constant prayer is so important. Just talk to Heavenly Father. Tell Him how you want to live His commandments. Be honest, too, and tell Him if it’s a hard choice for you. He will strengthen you.
Isaiah 3:10 basically says if you do the right things, you will reap the rewards. Sometimes, doing what Heavenly Father wants is difficult. But I know that it is always worth it.
Share your experience
What blessings have you seen from living your standards? Share your experience below.