What's really interesting is that at the time, I was so angry with God, so disillusioned, and so hurt. I thought nothing could be worse. That's laughable now, after more recent struggles, but it reminds me of how much I've changed through trials and adversities. I'm a stronger, wiser, more compassionate, more patient, and much more loving person than I was then and I wouldn't be who I am if the road had been easy.
Something I've been studying lately has really resonated with me. I've posted it on another forum so forgive me if you've aready read it:
One thing that I have found true in my life is that adversity and suffering are often invitations into God's presence, if we will receive them as such. Take, for example, the words recorded in Matthew.
Matthew records the Lord saying, Blessed are they that mourn; for they shall be comforted.
The Greek for comforted here has a much richer meaning that simply to be given succor.
To be comforted means to be invited to draw near. In other words, when we mourn, we are beng invited to draw near unto God. We may be consoled, encouraged, or admonished but we are also likely to be summoned to the presence of God for instruction.αρακαλέω
1) to call to one’s side, call for, summon
2) to address, speak to, (call to, call upon), which may be done in the way of exhortation, entreaty, comfort, instruction, etc.
2a) to admonish, exhort
2b) to beg, entreat, beseech
2b1) to strive to appease by entreaty
2c) to console, to encourage and strengthen by consolation, to comfort
2c1) to receive consolation, be comforted
2d) to encourage, strengthen
2e) exhorting and comforting and encouraging
2f) to instruct, teach
As indicated in the last General Conference by Elder Richards of the Seventy, the Savior learned by all that He suffered (Heb. 5:8 ) and "Perhaps we also need to experience the depths of mortality in order to understand Him and our eternal purposes."
The comfort we receive, if we respond to the summons, comes in the form of a visitation by either the first or second comforter. The name "comforter" obviously comes from the same root as "comforted" as used in the Beatitudes.
From the Bible Dictionary:
Paraclete. The word does not occur in the KJV. It is an English form of the Greek parakletos, a name applied by the Lord (John 14:16, 26; 15:26; 16:7) to the Holy Spirit, and which may be translated Comforter, Advocate, or Helper. The same name is applied by John (1 John 2:1) to the Lord himself. Advocate is probably the English word that most nearly represents the meaning of the Greek.
Some posit that suffering or mourning has no purpose after this life, that little children suffer in vain or that the suffering of the dying is useless, however spiritual maturity, instruction from the comforters, and wisdom rise with us and are still acquired in the next world. Just as in the temple, we pass symbolically from one world and our instruction continues in the next until we are prepared with all the light and knowledge we need to pass through the veil, so the knowledge we acquire through our suffering rises with us and, if we endure it well - which may mean simply humbling ourselves and letting the comforter and the experience lead us to a deeper knowledge of gospel truth - it grants us all the more advantage in the next world. As we come to understand Christ through our adversities and suffering, our very natures change.