Adversity Training

Friday, February 7

2-7By Eileen Turner of Portland, Oregon, USA

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid.

—John 14:27

As a season ticket holder for the Oregon Symphony, I receive an invitation to see video interviews of the conductor and performers. One night the person interviewed was the newly appointed first-chair bassoonist. During questioning about the grueling audition, she told how the field of competitors starts with about 80 people. Auditions continue until there are eight, then four, and so on.

The judges conduct these sessions blindly, giving each person a variety of music to play behind a closed curtain. The selection committee never sees the performer, does not know male from female, age, or experience until selecting the final two. The skill and adaptability of the performer is all that matters.

When asked how she withstood the competition ordeal, she credited on adversity training. The interviewer asked her to elaborate. She then told how she would have companion musicians, friends, and family make all kinds of distractions while she was practicing. They would call her cell phone, throw items at her, drop loud objects, flash lights on and off, or do anything that could cause interruption. She explained the importance of staying centered by focusing on the music and not allowing anything to distract her.

When sharing the love of God with friends, family and strangers, no matter what the obstacles, we can stay focused in our witness. We focus by practicing—telling and retelling the good news despite roadblocks put in our way. We can stay centered on Christ’s mission!

Prayer for Peace
Help us attend to our spiritual center, God. Help us keep connected to Christ’s mission of invitation and peace.

Spiritual Practice: Invite People to Christ
Read and reflect on Doctrine and Covenants 162:3b and 163:2b. Pray to be aware of people who might be receptive, and therefore blessed, by your sharing of the message of the Living Christ. Imagine being in relationship with them and inviting them to Christ. In preparation, discover your personal testimony of Christ.

“Be persistent in your witness and diligent in your mission to the world.” To help center your thoughts, repeat this mantra throughout the day: “Christ’s mission, our mission, my mission.”

Peace Covenant
Today, God, I will avoid distraction and focus on what matters most.

Leave a comment


  1. I think the closing key sums it all. Be Persistent and Diligent and center yourself in Christ ( God’s Word)… this will help focus you on the mission

  2. Vera Entwistle

     /  7 February 2014

    Eileen, I was touched by your Daily Bread story today and impressed with the discipline of the musician. How easily I am distracted! Thanks for sharing.

  3. Diane Akers

     /  7 February 2014

    Very good information to keep focused! Loved how you ended with Christ’s mission, our mission, my mission! Think each of our lives have many distractions?


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