This Easter Sunday was so fantastic. There is something special about the spirit of Easter that is even better than Christmas, which is saying a lot because I really really love Christmas.
This year was a bit different for me because I am the ward choir director in my ward, so for Easter, I was asked to put together a program that would take the place of the talks and musical number in Sacrament meeting. Well, it was quite the process putting it all together. After Christmas, I had a difficult time getting people to come back to choir. We didn't really get a good group there until the beginning of February, and by good group I mean anywhere from 10-15. We then were supposed to sing every month as well in Sacrament meeting, so we did (one of the times was ward conference), so by the time I got to thinking about Easter, it was probably the end of February. I picked out the 5 songs I wanted and was really excited about the program. The only problem was that people did not come consistently enough for us to learn the music really well, and also, 2 of the songs that I picked were pretty hard and the choir was just not going to have time to learn them well, despite the time already spent on them.
With that looming over me, and only a month until Easter, I dropped the 2 hard songs and added just one song, He is Risen. The only problem was, now that we had spent all that time on the 2 songs we dropped, we had to still learn 3 songs. So we learned 3 songs on March 25th, and still had to work on Jesus the Very Thought of Thee that we had practiced before. I am not gonna lie, I was stressed. I was so worried that it would not turn out! All I wanted was the program to be beautiful, help the congregation feel the spirit, and have the choir members be proud of their performance.
We did not practice the next week because it was Conference Sunday, so we decided to come at 10:30 on April 8th, the day we performed, to run through everything and hopefully get it all down.
So I had my accompanist learning 4 songs, and one I sprung on her 3 weeks before. She then texted me on Saturday telling me she couldn't play He is Risen and wondering if we could do a hymn instead. I started to panic, haha. So I told her it was no big deal, but I couldn't change it so last minute. I was already so stressed about all of the last minute-ness of the program! So I called our good friend Linda and she said she would play it the next day. Miracle. Rosemary also said that she and her siblings could add another song with an instrumental piece (which was soooo ridiculously beautiful).
I got to church at 10:30 on Easter, and all the rooms were still full. We had to wait until 10:45, but that worked out well because people come late, so everyone was pretty much there by the time we started :) We started practicing, and it was generally good, but definitely some trouble spots. I kept praying that the people in our ward would feel the spirit no matter how we sounded.
As we were doing our final run through before church, I was blown away at how great they sounded and the spirit they emanated. It was incredible. There are no words for how amazed I was.
Sacrament meeting was beautiful and perfect. The bishop spoke of Christ's last week on the earth, what he went through, and what it meant for us.
I know that the Easter program turning out was a complete miracle, and yes, Linda played amazingly on He Is Risen.
I am so grateful for my Savior. I am grateful we get to celebrate his life, and more specifically his Atonement for each of us every Easter. I know Jesus Christ lived. I know he came to this earth so that he could atone for each and every one of us; for our sins, our sadness, our loneliness, and any other problems or hurt we may experience in this life. He did it so that we would not be condemned by our human imperfection. He did it so that we could grow and change and develop into the people that he sent us here to become. I know He is merciful and kind and that He loves us each unconditionally. I love Him and I'm so grateful for Him!!
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