Hymns invite the Spirit of the Lord, create a feeling of reverence, … and provide a way for us to offer praises to the Lord (Hymns, First Presidency Preface).
The smell of lasagna filled the kitchen as Chrissy’s family sat down at the table. She quietly bowed her head as her father gave the prayer. After the prayer, Mother began to serve the lasagna while Father asked what everyone had learned in church that day.
Greta and Roger, Chrissy’s older sister and brother, had learned about Emma Smith, the Prophet Joseph’s wife. They said that Emma was called an “elect lady” by Jesus Christ.
Chrissy asked, “What’s an elect lady?”
Father explained, “An elect lady is a woman who is very special because she has been chosen or set apart by Heavenly Father.”
Chrissy smiled because she liked Emma Smith and was happy that Jesus Christ had called her an elect lady. Chrissy knew that Emma had been a very courageous person.
When it was Chrissy’s turn to tell what she had learned in Primary, her smile disappeared and her eyes filled with tears. She sobbed, “I wish I only had to sing two songs on Sunday like my friend Jaimey does at her church. I don’t want to sing in Primary anymore.”
“You used to love singing,” Mother said. “What happened?”
“Eric said I sing too loud. He says singing is silly.”
Mother stood up and left the kitchen. In a moment, she came back carrying her triple combination. When she found what she was searching for in it, she asked Chrissy, “Did you know that Emma Smith was given her very own revelation from the Lord?” Chrissy shook her head. “Well,” Mother continued, “Section twenty-five of the Doctrine and Covenants is Emma’s very own revelation, and in it Jesus Christ tells her some very special things.”
“Is that where He calls her an elect lady?”
“Yes, that’s right. It also talks about a calling Emma received from Him. Did you know that He asked her to make the very first hymnbook for the Church? He knew that she would be good at collecting hymns for the Saints to sing. After He asked her to make a hymnbook, the Lord told her something very special about singing. Would you like to hear what He said?”
At Chrissy’s nod, Mother read verse twelve: “‘For my soul delighteth in the song of the heart; yea, the song of the righteous is a prayer unto me, and it shall be answered with a blessing upon their heads.’” [D&C 25:12] Mother put the book down and asked everyone at the table, “Who knows what that verse means?”
Roger smiled and said, “That means Jesus Christ likes to hear us sing.”
“That’s right, Roger,” Father said. “It also means a song is like a prayer. We are always reverent during prayers because we are speaking with our Heavenly Father. Hymns are just like prayers, and that is why it is important to sing with all our hearts.”
Chrissy smiled as she thought about how Emma Smith had obeyed Jesus Christ and made Him happy. She thought of Eric and the mean things he had said. She decided that she would be like Emma and have the courage to do what is right. “I can’t wait for church next Sunday,” she announced. “I’m going to sing with all my heart. I am going to make Jesus happy.”