Q&A—Pressing Forward: It’s All Worth It

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Noelle Bybee is a high school student who’s seen great success as a young artist. This year, she is singing the Mutual theme song “Press Forward.” Noelle sat down with the New Era to talk about her passion for music and love of the gospel.

youth on a couch

Photograph of some of the performers on the Press Forward album by Christina Smith

What can you tell us about the “Press Forward” song?

I love it! When I first heard it, I got the chills. It was so cool, and I was so excited when I found out I was going to be able to sing it. I just loved it and how it applied to my life. I heard it right at a time where I needed it. I was doing what I was supposed to, but sometimes I didn’t see the positive results from it that I expected. The song reminded me to keep pressing forward, keep doing what I was supposed to be doing, because it will be worth it in the end.

Oh? What happened?

young woman

Photograph of Noelle By Tiffany Olson

I was in a show, and as far as I know, I was the only LDS person there. A lot of times the cast members questioned my faith, and I was seeing them live their lives so normally. I had always thought I was happy because I had gospel things in my life like prayer and scripture study, but when I realized that these people were living life the easy way and seemed to be happy anyway, without doing all of those things, I felt like, “Hey, I don’t need to do all of this either.” But after one morning of not saying a prayer, I realized how much it affected my day. I was so reassured, knowing that I was doing exactly what I was supposed to and that I was shining my light so others could see it.

Have you grown closer to Jesus Christ just by doing those regular things?

Yes, definitely. I feel so much closer to Him than I have before, because I talk to Heavenly Father in His name every day. I’ve gained that relationship, just like a regular friend.

What was one experience you had on the show that illustrates how you had to live your faith?

There was one time where a group of teenagers wanted to go to a party and I thought, “Oh fun! Dancing and stuff!” But then I realized what they meant by it—drinking and stuff—and I felt sick to my stomach, because I’d already committed to going. What could I say? I really struggled with that. After worrying about it for a while, I realized what I had committed to, and I apologized to all of them. I just said that that’s not who I am and that’s not what I do, and I was just going to have to pass on this one. And it’s cool, because I actually just had a really close friend who found it really cool that I did that. He asked me a lot more about the Church, and he actually got baptized this last summer! It shows that good can come from standing up for what you believe in.

That’s awesome! Any last thoughts?

Hopefully the youth will feel the spirit of this song and realize everyone’s worth. I want them to know just how much Heavenly Father loves them and of how much worth they are to Him. Times can be hard, but we can keep pressing forward, because it’s going to all be worth it in the end—God loves us so much. It’s all worth it.