How often do we desire the hard things, the difficult things, the painful things to quickly come to an end? We desperately desire to be delivered from whatever is causing us suffering and pain. However, it is in the process of being delivered through our trials that we learn the most valuable lessons, the eternal lessons of truth.
Joseph Smith must have desired to be delivered from Liberty Jail. Instead he was delivered through as he received revelation that can inspire us today. The promise from God was, “Thine adversity and thine afflictions shall be but a small moment; And then, if thou endure it well, God shall exalt thee on high” (D&C 121:7-8).
The Jaredites in their barges being tossed upon the waves “three hundred and forty and four days” (Ether 6:11), must have desired to be delivered from their watery journey. Instead they were delivered through and they “did land upon the shore of the promised land. And when they had set their feet upon the shores of the promised land they bowed themselves down upon the face of the land, and did humble themselves before the Lord, and did shed tears of joy before the Lord, because of the multitude of his tender mercies over them” (Ether 6:12).
The Saviour, our Great Exemplar, asked if it were possible to be delivered from His trial when He prayed, saying, “O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt” (Matt 26:39). Jesus Christ did drink of that bitter cup and glorified His Father and provided the way for our redemption.
I have often thought and prayed to be delivered from, but the following statement by President Henry B. Eyring taught me a valuable perspective:
“I bear you my testimony that the Lord will always prepare a way for you to escape from the trials you will be given if you understand two things. One is that you need to be on the Lord’s errand. The second thing you need to understand is that the escape will almost never be out of the trial; it will usually be through it [see 1 Nephi 3:7]. If you pray to have the experience removed altogether, you may not find the way prepared for you. Instead, you need to pray to find the way of deliverance through it” (Henry B. Eyring, To Draw Closer to God: A Collection of Discourses  84–86; emphasis added).
Pain has taught me of Christ and His influence. Unexpectedly, I found myself in the hospital with many issues. I was in shock and in tremendous pain. With no end in sight, I found myself relying on priesthood blessings, faith, and the power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ to carry me through.
Nevertheless, I desperately wanted the pain to end. I tried everything: heat, cold, physical therapy, ultrasound, medication, and, oh, so many medications.
Opioids are a class of powerful drugs prescribed to treat severe pain. They are known to create feelings of intense pleasure or euphoria. Because of their powerful effects, opioids often lead to addiction and pose a risk for fatal overdoses. I was prescribed several opioids. They were not effective for me and did not alleviate my pain or produce a euphoric feeling.
The process of being delivered through any challenge will not be easy. As I faced the effects of withdrawal from powerful drugs, I learned it can be a long, slow process. There was no delivery from this process if I desired, truly desired, to be drug free. There was no way to minimize the withdrawal. The only way through was to endure one moment, one hour, one day, one night at a time.
I was not left to my own strength. God did nourish me, strengthen me and provided means for me (1 Nephi 17:3). It felt like forever.
Those were hard moments, hours and days of hanging on and praying for strength to endure. I could only hope that better days lay ahead. The tender mercies, the answers to prayer, the presence of the Holy Ghost combined to make the deliverance through possible.
The better days did finally come when I was drug free and free from the pain of withdrawal. Day by day I had been delivered through and I shed tears of joy like unto the Jaredites as they set foot upon the promised land.
I can now comprehend, in the smallest of ways, those people who say the affliction and suffering was worth it for the lessons they learned. I am not sure I can confidently say I am grateful for the experience. But I know that I am grateful that because of God’s assistance I have been able to be delivered through to a drug free me. I know I received love, support, and even protection from greater harm. Words are inadequate to express my gratitude.
I testify that as we seek help to be delivered through the storms of life, we can come to know the presence of our Father, the power of His Beloved Son, and the comfort that only the Holy Ghost can bestow. Moment by moment we can begin to comprehend the value of being delivered through.