I’ve never had my bed call to me more than it did at 3:30 a.m. on Thursday morning and I’ve never had the alarm sound more like a blaring siren then it did three and a half hours later. That started Youth Conference for me and Jason and my girls. If you don’t know what Youth Conference is…in the LDS church the youth 14 to 18, boys and girls, from the area get together with their leaders and spend several days doing faith promoting and friendship building experiences. I’m the Young Women’s President in our Ward so I already was planning on going but Jason got called special for Youth Conference to do sound for them.
Well the day before it all we did sound for Ryan Innes at the Nibley concert for their town celebration. Nibley is close to Logan which is almost three hours away from our house. Thus the reason we didn’t go to bed until 3:30 Thursday morning. Cuss, throw things, yell, oh yes, all those thoughts were going through my head when the alarm went off that morning. I will admit that I had been dreading Youth Conference all month. Somehow we were supposed to fit in all of Jason’s crazy town celebration’s and BYU activities that Jason does during the summer and still make this happen.
I wish that I could say that we went into it all at least a little bit excited and that we didn’t murmur at all, but I can’t. And I really was afraid that we wouldn’t survive, but somehow we did, and quite miraculously, even despite my murmuring, I still managed to feel the Holy Ghost. I think from the very first reenactment that we did I was drawn right in. It’s harder to feel the excitement that the crowd feels at anything we do, whether if it’s a concert in the park or a dance with three thousand screaming kids, or even a Youth Conference, because we know all the ins and outs and technical crap that went into it and it kind of takes away the magic of it all, but when President Bailey stood on that ridiculously tall tower in the middle of that field and spoke as if he was King Benjamin from the Book of Mormon I was head and toes prickles. What a good man who really had spent his whole life serving the Lord standing there playing the part of an ancient king who had served the people and his Savior all of his days.
The Youth were amazing as they always are and watching them play games in the field all 200+ of them getting along and giggling was an amazing sight to behold. When Captain Moroni rode in on his beautiful horse all decked out in his fighting armor, I barely thought about the time I had spent with him and his wife the hour before teaching them how to hook up his wireless mic, he was just fantastic. My Young Women spoke later about him and how much they loved that he had written his speech himself and it was directed just to them as if someone from the scriptures knew about their day and their trials and spoke with all his heart for them. What they didn’t know and what he told me just the hour before was his concern that he could hold his emotions together so that they could feel the spirit. Sunday at church when we recapped the experience his speech was one of the first things that they mentioned that helped to build their testimony of the gospel and of Jesus Christ.
Friday afternoon Jason left to head back to BYU and I stayed to do that evening’s sound and then spent the time after with my ward around the campfire as our Bishop spoke with the kids. I crawled into bed sometime after 10:30 but without Jason there I couldn’t go to sleep. At about 12:00 I heard a truck pull up but when no one came into the trailer I assumed it wasn’t Jason and managed to fall asleep anyways. Long and behold it was actually him, but before he went to sleep he went back out to that ridiculously tall tower and set up speakers, ten tops and for subs, around the bottom of it for the 4 a.m. morning reenactment. He wandered into the trailer sometime around 1:30 and then he and I stayed awake for another hour trying to get just the right mix to go with the sound track that the Stake had provided to give it just a little more umph. We got a whole whopping hour sleep before once again that darn alarm sounded waking us up and pulling us out of bed to that field.
A full moon was out making it crazy easy to get the generators to run to get the sound up and going and to set the direction of our spotlight at the top of the tower, but it was definitely not the pitch dark that the Stake had envisioned when planning for the reenactment of the Savior’s visit to the Nephites in ancient America after his crucifixion. 4 a.m. hit and it was time to queue the sound of mass destruction on the massive sound that Jason brought but all that we got was a horrible squeaking sound from the generators and the power sending the completely wrong signal through the sound system. Didn’t matter what cords Jason switched or what knobs he adjusted no hope and still too much moon to make anyone happy.
What do you do at this point? I did what I always do when I know so much is riding on us, I folded my arms and offered a silent prayer and so did so many others from the stake who were out there that morning in that field I am certain. And of course what did I find upon saying amen??? That’s right, the speakers went silent and Jason pushed play and horrible music blared and sounds of destruction rumbled up the hill to those 200+ plus sleeping kids to wake them to the reality of what they had only ever read in the scriptures. Upon asking Jason what he had done to make it work he said, “I don’t know. It just did.”
It wasn’t long until ward after ward wandered in, kids tired and startled, wrapped in jackets and thick blankets, their camp chairs in hand to stumble into that lazy field, the moon lighting their way, when Jason came up and wrapped his arms around me and said, “look at the moon.” It was starting to dip low and in front of my very eyes I saw in response to the Stake’s prayer that morning, the moon set in lightening speed before my eyes.
Pleasant story, you say? Sweet. Sure and if that were all that it was it would be good enough for me to tell it, but I know differently. When Christ stood that morning, the actor portraying him lit from head to toe with the spot light and the lift that he was in towering forever above the trees hid because the moon had set so swiftly, I knew then that it was a miracle and if I didn’t bare testimony of it I would be most hard and inconsiderate. If those kids don’t know now that God loves them and is mindful of them than I don’t know what further witness could give them that knowledge. He loved them enough that even though there are billions of people in this world God sent 200+ kids that miracle and that witness of him in the very wee hours of that morning in the most humble and insignificant little field tucked in that tiny little valley beneath the Red Cliffs.
Miracle of Miracles, God never forgets his children, we just have to seek him.