Standards on Stage
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“Standards on Stage,” New Era, November 2016

Standards on Stage

Samantha W., Alberta, Canada

Instant Messages

Last year I joined my school’s musical as the lead female role. I was thrilled to get the part, but some of my scenes involved kissing. I’d decided to follow the For the Strength of Youth standards and not date until I was 16. For me, it didn’t feel right to kiss at my age either, so I didn’t feel comfortable with the scenes. I asked my director about it, and she said we’d just cut the kiss off before it happened.

I was relieved but felt bad because the lead male thought I just didn’t want to kiss him. I tried to explain my decision, but he thought I was making excuses. I didn’t know what to do to make him believe me, but then my friends assured him that I was telling the truth. Since they aren’t members of the Church, I was surprised at how much they’d noticed and supported my standards.

As we continued practicing for our show, I saw others around me standing up for my beliefs. When I wanted to find a modest dance costume, many girls helped me find one that worked; when I had to be dragged around on stage, the actor holding my feet made sure my skirt always covered my knees; and when we had to learn extra dances, we sacrificed lunch hours practicing then instead of on Sundays.

Some people still questioned my actions, but I hadn’t realized until then what an influence I’d been. By simply living the gospel, I was being an example, and others had noticed and were willing to stand by me to help me continue keeping my standards.

I know that Heavenly Father is always looking out for us and will give us ways to share the gospel in our lives every day—even by simply setting an example.