For more information on this topic read “The Atonement Covers All Pain” by Elder Kent F. Richards, Ensign, May 2011, 15.
"No pain that we suffer, no trial that we experience is wasted. It ministers to our education, to the development of such qualities as patience, faith, fortitude, and humility. ... It is through sorrow and suffering, toil and tribulation, that we gain the education that we come here to acquire.”
(Elder Orson F. Whitney, quoted by President Spencer W. Kimball in Faith Precedes the Miracle [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Company, 1972])
“Teach Me to Walk,” Children’s Songbook, p. 177.
"And now it came to pass that the burdens which were laid upon Alma and his brethren were made light; yea, the Lord did strengthen them that they could bear up their burdens with ease, and they did submit cheerfully and with patience to all the will of the Lord" (Mosiah 24:15).
Ask your family members if they have ever heard the phrases “hold your horses” or “keep your shirt on.” Ask, "What quality is being requested by those phrases?" Explain that the answer is patience.
Read this insight from Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin:
“I believe that a lack of patience is a major cause of the difficulties and unhappiness in the world today. Too often, we are impatient with ourselves, with our family members and friends, and even with the Lord. We seem to demand what we want right now, regardless of whether we have earned it, whether it would be good for us, or whether it is right. Some seek immediate gratification or numbing of every impulse by turning to alcohol and drugs, while others seek instant material wealth by questionable investments or by dishonesty, with little or no regard for the consequences. Perhaps the practice of patience is more difficult, yet more necessary, now than at any previous time” ("Patience, a Key to Happiness," Ensign, May 1987, 30).
Ask, "Why do you think Elder Wirthlin would say that having 'patience is more difficult, yet more necessary, now than at any previous time'?"
Have family members read Romans 5:1–5 and look for what Paul taught about patience.
Then ask your family members the following:
How can we have “peace with God”? What did Paul say helps us learn patience? Whom should we learn to rely on when faced with tribulation? What blessing comes to us through the Holy Ghost?
Read the following by Elder Neal A. Maxwell:
“Patience is tied very closely to faith in our Heavenly Father. Actually, when we are unduly impatient, we are suggesting that we know what is best—better than does God. Or, at least, we are asserting that our timetable is better than his. Either way we are questioning the reality of God’ somniscience [knowledge]” ("Patience," Ensign, Oct. 1980, 28).
Prompt discussion by asking the following:
How can we show our faith in Heavenly Father? Why is it important to recognize that God knows what is best for us? How might this knowledge help us get through trials?
Testify to your family that patience is one way we come to be more Christlike. Remind your family that patience gives us the hope that Christ’s Atonement will save us.
(Dennis H. Leavitt and Richard O. Christensen, Scripture Study for Latter-day Saint Families: The New Testament, [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2006], p. 183)
Patience was required of Noah and his family. We talk about “forty days and forty nights” as though they had to live in the ark with all those animals for a month and a half. Well, forty days and forty nights was only a fraction of their endurance. For instance, remember that after they went into the ark and closed the door, they were inside the ark for seven days before the Flood began (Genesis 7:10). Would that be a test of faith or what? Would you decide, about the fifth day, that it would be awfully nice to spend the weekend picking buttercups in the meadow rather than cleaning the elephants’ stalls and that maybe Noah had made a big mistake?
Then the rains began. The scripture tells us that on the same day “all the fountains of the great deep [were] broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened” (Genesis 7:11-12). It was not until the fortieth day of this torrential downpour and flooding that the water was deep enough to “lift [the ark] up above the earth” (Genesis 7:17). And then “the waters prevailed upon the earth an hundred and fifty days” (Genesis 7:24). We’re up to 197 days so far.
The scripture doesn’t tell us how many days it took for the waters to recede, but it says that the ark came to rest on the mountains of Ararat on the seventeenth day of the seventh month (Genesis 8:4), and it took until the first day of the tenth month for the tops of the mountains to become visible. If we hypothesize a month of thirty days—and I realize that there are Bible scholars who make careers out of figuring out the calendar—then we need to add another seventy-three days. Then they waited forty days to send out the raven and the dove, seven more days for the second flight of the dove, who returned with the olive branch, and a final seven days for the third flight. It sounds as if it then took another month plus twenty-seven days before they received the command of the Lord to go forth from the ark (Genesis 8:3-6, 10, 12-14). According to my addition, this comes to a total of 401 days. That’s a long time to be cooped up in a floating zoo—a year, a month, and six days!
So the story of Noah teaches us that there will be adversity, that it will last a long time, and that it will require reserves of patience that seem superhuman.
(Chieko N.Okazaki, Aloha!, [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Company, 1995])
Play Patience Relay.
Separate a deck of cards into a suit per team. Lay out the 10 number cards (including ace) in any order face down at the end of the room. One at a time the team members run up and turn over a card. If it is not the ace then they turn it face down again and run back to their team and the next player has a go. When the ace is turned up they can lay it face up. The next card needed is the two and so on. Play continues until one team has all its cards turned face up. [Note: this game can be played with Rook cards if preferred]
3 mangoes, peeled and sliced
1 tray ice cubes
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
3⁄4 cup frozen orange juice concentrate
12-liter bottle of gingerale
Combine mangoes, ice, lime juice, sugar, vanilla, and orange juice concentrate in the jar of a blender. Pulse until well blended. Add ginger ale until blender jar is nearly full. Blend again and enjoy. Serves 4.
(Jill McKenzie, 52 Weeks of Proven Recipes for Picky Kids, [Salt Lake City: Shadow Mountain, 2008], p.73)