Jesus in the Sky

Jesus in the Sky

From Chicken Soup for the Latter-day Saint Soul

Jesus in the Sky

Behold, you have had many afflictions because of your family; nevertheless, I will bless you and your family, yea, your little ones; and the day cometh that they will believe and know the truth and be one with you in my church.

D&C 31:2

It was a beautiful crisp Sunday afternoon when my three children and I left late for our usual meetings at our modest little chapel in the small town where we lived. Our meetinghouse is a small white building just off the highway. Even though it has been added on to three times, it would probably fit inside a typical meetinghouse twice! We have only one ward in town, so the summers and holidays here are always cozy with lots of visitors—and even though we were only ten minutes late, the parking lot was almost full, as was the chapel.

It was difficult to find seats for all of us. Normally, we stay in the foyer when we arrive late, but the foyer was already filled. My frustration grew as I headed for the back doors to the chapel, knowing my husband was at work and I was going to have to keep my children quiet and in their seats on my own.

We waited for the prayer to end before we entered the chapel and tried to find three seats on an aisle. My youngest was only a few months shy of a year, so I carried him in his infant car seat. His older brother was two—and certainly lived up to the title of “terrible twos.” My oldest had only one thing on her mind: the upcoming sixth birthday party for her and a few of her friends. As we walked in, she was chattering about what she would get and who would come to the party and what dress she would wear.

My two-year-old made sure we were noticed as we walked to our seats by shouting, “I no wanna sit here, Mommm!” Then he did what we affectionately call his “limp noodle”—he collapsed to the floor, face down, still clutching my hand tightly. A few people chuckled softly as I scooped him up with one arm, still carrying the car seat with the other. Finally, we found a spot and sat down.

I handed out crayons and coloring books, hoping to keep my two children occupied as long as possible—but knowing in my heart it would only work for a few minutes. I gave the baby a bottle. As the sacrament was passed, the children were spread out on the floor, coloring in the hymn books. The baby drifted off to sleep.

Soon after the first speaker stood up, my two-year-old no longer wanted to color. I figured he wanted to run around—and feared he would wake the baby. I was mentally prepared to drag the entire crew out to the hall.

As I started to wrestle with my two-year-old, my mind raced. Were the children even getting anything out of these meetings? Was I doing the right thing by bringing them week after week—or was I just distracting everyone else?

I picked up the crayons and put the coloring books away, and persuaded my two-year-old to sit on my lap for a few minutes. Then he wanted to lay down, so I held him in my arms. Suddenly he pointed to the ceiling and said, more clearly than I had ever heard him say anything, “Look, Mommy, in the sky! Jesus! Look, Mommy!”

I immediately looked up—half expecting to actually see the Savior there. Instead, I saw only the ceiling fans. After that, my little boy sat quietly on my lap through the rest of the meeting.

I will never forget the way I felt that day. I know my son saw something I clearly could not, and that the Savior really does watch over us. How grateful I was that I made the effort to bring them all!

Jennifer Gowans

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