There Are Some Years in Our Lives That We Would Not Want to Live Again…

hinckleySo, your job is to guess who wrote the following letter (Though I’m guessing the picture gives it away). Some hints: The author is a woman. She is pretty well-known in LDS circles. She is writing to one of her family members, probably a married child. She is also not known as a person who has suffered through much failure. Here’s the letter:

March 3, 1985

Dear Ones,

Dad talked with you this morning and we gather that these are rather stressful days for you, but even this will pass away and the lessons learned will be a future blessing. There are some years in our lives that we would not want to live again.

‘Be patient in afflictions, four thou shalt have many; but endure them, for, lo, I am with thee, even unto the end of thy days’ (D&C 24:8)

End of sermon.

You are loved.


So, what do you think? Who is it?

This is a letter from Sister Marjorie Hinckley written to one of her children (Glimpses Into the Life and Heart of Marjorie Pay Hinckley, Virginia H. Pearce, editor, p. 8). The line in the letter that always touches me is: “There are some years in our lives that we would not want to live again”.

President and Sister Hinckley have always been that couple that seemed so successful when it comes to the things that matter to me. I’ve read President Hinckley’s biography multiple times and I read Sister Hinckley’s book almost every year. They are the couple that I hope we become. That’s why it is always a little surprising to me to hear that some years were rough on them. I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised. Every single person has a year or two (or more) that they wouldn’t want to live again. Everyone has years of loss, fear, frustration, disappointment.

President Henry B. Eyring once shared:

“When I was a young man, I served as counselor to a wise district president in the Church. He tried to teach me. One of the things I remember wondering about was this advice he gave: ‘When you meet someone, treat them as if they were in serious trouble, and you will be right more than half the time.’

I thought then that he was pessimistic. Now, more than 40 years later, I can see how well he understood the world and life.” (“In the Strength of the Lord”, April 2004)

Today in a leadership meeting I was able to attend in a ward close to mine, we talked about the fact that we ought to be expressing love and support to everyone around us rather than just those who seem to be consistently struggling in the gospel. Why? Because everyone is struggling to one extent or another. Not struggling this week? Chances are that you will be next week. Part of mortality…part of the test.

You know, in light of Sister Hinckley’s letter and President Eyring’s observation, it wouldn’t be weird if this year was that year for you. I hope you know that there really are scores of people around you to help. They’re not perfect at helping. In fact, most are untrained as far as that goes. But, they’re willing and understanding. Remember, they’ve had years that they wouldn’t want to live again, too.

Be Encouraging…


These views are personal, and are not the official views of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints...

2 thoughts on “There Are Some Years in Our Lives That We Would Not Want to Live Again…

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