Have you ever faced a challenge? Have you ever wondered if you had the ability to accomplish an assignment or fulfill a responsibility? What scriptures do you recall where others have wondered if they could do hard things?

Remember the experience of Moses in Exodus 3, 4:

  • When the Lord spoke from the burning bush and called Moses to lead the people out of Egypt and out of bondage, Moses said “Who am I, that I should go unto Pharaoh, and that I should bring forth the children of Israel out of Egypt?” The Lord reassured him, “Certainly I will be with thee; and this shall be a token unto thee, that I have sent thee…” And the Lord told Moses what to say so the people of Israel would follow him.
  • And Moses answered and said, “But, behold, they will not believe me, nor hearken unto my voice: for they will say, The Lord hath not appeared unto thee.” Then the Lord gave Moses three signs to show the Israelites that he was called of God: one sign was Moses’ rod turning into a serpent; another sign was his hand becoming leprous and then becoming clean again. The third sign was taking the water of the river, pouring it on the ground and it became blood.
  • And Moses said unto the Lord, “O my Lord, I am not eloquent, neither heretofore, nor since thou hast spoken unto thy servant: but I am slow of speech, and of a slow tongue.” And the Lord said, “Who hath made man’s mouth? or who maketh the dumb, or deaf, or the seeing, or the blind? have not I the Lord? Now therefore go, and I will be with thy mouth, and teach thee what thou shalt say.”

How often do we feel inadequate and wonder if we can effectively serve in our new calling or in leadership positions? How often do we feel slow of speech and slow of tongue especially when we are learning a new language or learning to understand different accents?

What is the Lord’s response to us?

  • I will be with thee: Doctrine and Covenants 84:88
  • There will be a sign: the Book of Mormon, Another Testament of Jesus Christ.
  • He will teach us what to say: The gifts of the Spirit including the gift of discernment, the gift of teaching the word of God, and the gift of tongues.

If we feel anxious or inadequate, Adjusting to Missionary Life provides suggestions and tools that apply to all of us, including missionaries:

  • Enjoy being a beginner when you are new at something. You aren’t expected to be an expert. It is enough to be curious, interested, humble, and willing to try. Enjoy it!
  • Cheerfully do what you can, and let God make up the difference. Sometimes we may feel useless or ashamed when others look more successful. If Satan tempts you to doubt yourself or compare yourself to others, remember that this is God’s work, and He chooses the weak and simple to do it. He has chosen you! Trust Him. He trusts you!
  • Envision success. Worrying can be a way of mentally practicing failure. Instead of rehearsing what can go wrong or constantly worrying about “what if,” mentally practice positive outcomes and make plans to achieve them. Then if things don’t work out as you hope, imagine yourself learning from the setback and going forward.
  • Don’t try to control what you can’t. Trying to control things you cannot control only makes you feel more out of control, increasing your anxiety. Focus your energy on things you can do something about. Ask, “What is the worst that can happen?” If the worst possible outcome is something you can live with or something the Savior can help you overcome, move on without fear.
  • Try slowing down by 10 percent if you tend to rush a lot. You may be more efficient if you are calmer.
  • As you serve your family, ward members, neighbors, or the poor and needy, you will think less about yourself and be happier. (See Preach My Gospel, 168–69.)

President Thomas S. Monson often said, “Whom the Lord calls, the Lord qualifies.” We can do hard things.

In the April 2021 General Conference, President Russell M. Nelson invited us to increase our faith through study, believing in Jesus Christ, acting in faith, worthily partaking of sacred ordinances, and asking Heavenly Father, in the name of Jesus Christ, for help.

May we follow President Nelson’s counsel and receive the blessings he promised: “Your growing faith in Him will move mountains—not the mountains of rock that beautify the earth but the mountains of misery in your lives. Your flourishing faith will help you turn challenges into unparalleled growth and opportunity.” With the Lord’s help, we can do hard things!

[Note: The ideas and suggestions contained in these articles are not intended as a substitute for consultation with a qualified mental health professional. In addition, if you are experiencing thoughts of self-harm or suicide, please seek medical or mental health assistance immediately.  In the U.S., call or text 988 to reach the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline, available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Or use the Lifeline Chat at 988lifeline.org/chat/. Services are free and confidential.]