There was a man, struggling to get married, asked Elder Richard G. Scott the probing question, “Why doesn’t the Lord give me a wife?” His response is a gentle reminder on our area of focus and agency on the matter.
It was as though he thought an eternal companion were a teddy bear to be acquired with no thought of her agency.
“As we spoke, it was obvious he was not doing the most fundamental things to qualify to find a wife. He admitted that maybe he should do something about his excessive weight, but that was hard. His clothes were slovenly and his body so neglected that it was difficult to stand near him. Clearly, he is not doing his part.
Help from the Lord generally comes in increments. He can immediately cure serious illnesses or disabilities or even allow the dead to be raised. But the general pattern is that improvement comes in sequential steps. That plan gives us an opportunity to discover what the Lord expects us to learn. It requires our patience to recognize His timetable. It provides growth from our efforts and trust in Him and the opportunity to express gratitude for the help given.
Often we have difficulty mastering lessons the Lord wants us to learn when things are going too well in our lives. When there is suffering or pain, we ask ourselves a lot of questions. Some of them ought to be: What does the Lord want me to learn from this experience? What do I need to do? What do I need to change? Whom do I need to serve? Or what characteristic must I improve? Pondering and prayer will help us understand what we are to learn from the challenges we are asked to overcome.”
“Obtaining Help from the Lord,” Richard G. Scott, Conference October 1991