She is not yet twelve years old, but her talk in sacrament meeting stirred my soul. (A sacrament meeting is a bit like a Latter-day Saint version of Mass — in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, members of the congregation give talks (or sermons or testimonies) every week).
She talked of her recent experience at Young Women camp, and it reminded me of my experiences as a youth, sitting around the campfire, wishing I could take the feeling home in a paper bag. I didn’t know then that I didn’t need to feel that swelling of warmth in my heart all the time.
I felt my heart fill again today as this young woman spoke.
And then, she reminded me of the story of how Brigham Young, the second prophet of The Church, finally decided to become a member of the Church. I smiled. Ah, yes, it’s the simple things! Like listening to a talk at church.
Brigham’s parents had already accepted The Book of Mormon as scripture, as had siblings and other relatives. But Brigham was skeptical of any and all religions, and he was skeptical of this book, and he remained unattached to “Mormonism.”
What was it that finally helped Brigham Young feel that he could believe the Book of Mormon? Following are his words:
“If all the talent, tact, wisdom, and refinement of the world had been sent to me with the Book of Mormon, and had declared, in the most exalted of earthly eloquence, the truth of it, undertaking to prove it by learning and worldly wisdom, they would have been to me like the smoke which arises only to vanish away. But when I saw a man without eloquence, or talents for public speaking, who could only say, ‘I know, by the power of the Holy Ghost, that the Book of Mormon is true, that Joseph Smith is a Prophet of the Lord,’ the Holy Ghost proceeding from that individual illuminated my understanding, and light, glory, and immortality were before me. I wasencircled by them, filled with them, and I knew for myself that the testimony of the man was true…. My own judgment, natural endowments, and education bowed to this simple, but mighty testimony. There sits the man who baptized me, (brother Eleazer Miller.) It filled my system with light, and my soul with joy. The world, with all its wisdom and power, and with all the glory and gilded show of its kings or potentates, sinks into perfect insignificance, compared with the simple, unadorned testimony of the servant of God.” (Journal of Discourses 1:91).