Last night, as well as tonight, I have had the wonderful privilege to attend “One Voice,” a presentation of music and testimony, sung by Saints Unified Voices gospel choir, directed by Gladys Knight. (To learn more about the choir, click here.)
The music was absolutely amazing. Every member of the choir, every member of the live band, as well as Sister Knight herself, has glorious God-given talent. Many cultures were embraced in the music, and every song bore testimony of the divinity of Jesus Christ and our necessity to follow Him.
My favorite song from the event spoke of this very topic. It is so easy to tell Jesus we will follow Him tomorrow, but tomorrow could be too late. We should choose to follow Christ today.
As I heard the music, I felt alive. I felt invigorated. I felt the Spirit of the Lord in a new way. I found myself smiling, clapping, standing, and rejoicing in my Savior as I, and a thousand others, saw and heard the testimonies of people who love Christ with all their souls. The Spirit radiated out of their voices, faces, and whole bodies.
Now, as beautiful and magnificent as the music was, I must say that the most uplifting part of both evenings for me was listening to several individuals share their stories and testimonies of Jesus Christ and His gospel.
The first man who spoke said that he was related to Gladys Knight. He was a white man, making the idea of blood relation humorous. Then he profoundly stated that Gladys is a child of God. He too is a child of God. That means Gladys is his sister. That means Gladys is my sister too.
The theme of being children of God was reiterated throughout the presentation. Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints believe that each and every person on the earth from Adam and Eve until now is a literal spirit son or daughter of Heavenly Father. We believe that we lived with God before we came to earth, and that we chose to come here and follow His great Plan of Happiness. You can read more about this plan here.
Gladys’ husband, and Gladys herself, also stood and told their stories, from how they were raised, how they met each other, and how they each individually came to join the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints – the church they, and millions around the world, believe is the restored church of Jesus Christ. You can read more about the restoration of the gospel here.
They pled with the audience to open their hearts to the possibility of Joseph Smith really being a prophet, of the Book of Mormon really being true, of the priesthood really being restored. Gladys’ husband, William McDowell, asked us to follow the promise at the end of the Book of Mormon, which states:
Gladys Knight believes that God gave her the gift of song to do His will, to feed His sheep, to tell the world that Jesus Christ lives. I believe that she is right, as I believe that all of us is given talents, where if we use them appropriately, we can bring peace to the world through the gospel of Jesus Christ.
I am grateful for Gladys and her choir’s courage as they stand for what they believe, embrace cultural differences, and bring light and hope to all wishing to find it.