The Words Of The Song

By Paige Marriott

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    I had a serious case of the “I feel worthless” syndrome. I lacked self-esteem and refused to care for or about myself.

    My parents tried to encourage me, but any suggestion could cause an eruption. Talking to me was like walking on eggs. “Just leave me alone!” I would exclaim, louder and more angrily than I had intended. I knew my parents spent many sleepless nights worrying about their daughter.

    One Sunday evening, my mother insisted that I go to a stake fireside with her and my father. “I don’t want to go to that stupid fireside!” I said. I was always looking for an argument, for any way to blame others for my misery.

    “Don’t be ridiculous, Paige. Of course you’ll go,” my mom answered.

    When we walked into the chapel, I noticed that some of my friends were already sitting—not in the pews, but on the stand. Trying to go unnoticed, I sat down.

    A youth leader tapped me on the shoulder, “Paige, why don’t you sing with us?”

    “I’m sorry, Sister Daines, but I haven’t been to any of the practices. I don’t even know the name of the song.”

    “Don’t worry,” she said as she helped me up from my seat. “You’ll be fine.”

    Before I knew it, the stake president was introducing “a vocal number by the great youth of the stake.” Panic raced through my heart.

    The pianist touched the keys, and the opening bars of the song echoed throughout the chapel. Tears slowly slid down my cheeks as I began to sing. I knew the words to this song. I had all along.

    “I am a child of God,” I sang. As the words came from my lips, I looked at my parents, smiling from the front row. Their eyes said, “We love you.”

    Suddenly I knew I was not alone. From that moment, I have known that truly I am a child of God and that he has sent me to parents kind and dear.

    The words of the song had come out of my mouth many times. Now they had finally entered my heart.

    Photograph by Welden Andersen; posed by models