All posts by Krista Stockton:

  • Hymn 206: Away in a Manger

    We are often asked, in LDS theology, to give more attention to our hymns. Music can invite the spirit, and careful contemplation of the lyrics can add to our understanding of the doctrine. Indeed, there are some doctrines that we hold as true that are rarely mentioned outside of our hymns. And of course, this […]

  • Hymn 137: Testimony

    The witness of the Holy Ghost, As borne by those who know, Has lifted me again to thee, O Father of my soul. The beginning of this hymn makes reference to a gospel principle we don’t always spend a lot of time on: that not everyone is equally capable of developing their own testimony. We […]

  • Hymn 125: How Gentle God’s Commands

    You know the old object lesson of the stick and the carrot, where both reward and punishment are used to motivate a mule? I feel like our church, in modern days, loves to talk about the carrot God offers us, but we don’t often mention the stick. This often comes out in discussions of the […]

  • Hymn 337: O Home Beloved (Men’s Choir)

    When I was in college, I lived in many different apartments and houses. But there was one house that I loved dearly, and after moving out, I thought “what was I thinking?” and moved back in again as soon as I could. After getting the key, and before anyone else moved in, I went in […]

  • Hymn 160: Softly Now the Light of Day

    Softly now the light of day Fades upon my sight away. Free from care, from labor free, Lord, I would commune with thee. This must be one of the shortest hymns in the hymnbook. There are other verses–they bring up the fact that God can see even in darkness, and expressing the hope that at […]

  • Hymn 197: O Savior, Thou Who Wearest a Crown

    People can be cruel. Though I like to believe that mankind is mostly good, that most people, in their heart of hearts, want to do the right thing, the truth is that not everyone IS good. In the first verse of this song, the soldiers aren’t content to do their regular, rather gruesome duties. Crucifying […]

  • Hymn #5: High on the Mountaintop

    Though Joel H. .Johnson wrote the text for this hymn, I feel I ought to note that Ebeneezer Beesley wrote the music. Woo! As a bonus, I really like the music, but I feel more qualified to talk about the text, so I will. Sorry, music buffs.   Mountains and temples have long been  metaphorically […]

  • Hymn 254: True to the Faith

    When I was younger, I was a socially awkward kid.  Instead of blaming my limited social life on my own interpersonal shortcomings, I mostly decided that I had few friends because I was so holy and the other kids were just intimidated by me. Although I don’t remember the exact thoughts in my head,  there […]

  • Hymn #52: The Day Dawn is Breaking

    I feel like I’m starting to sound like a broken record on these, and for that, I apologize. Many of these hymns written early in the LDS church’s history tend to share some excitement. “Look what’s back! Isn’t it great? Aren’t you excited about what comes next?” Well, yes. Kind of. Sometimes. When people talk […]

  • Hymn #279: Thy Holy Word

    Today I woke up on the wrong side of the bed, I guess, and I couldn’t quite overcome my sense that everything was a little bit off. I went to church, but staying was a constant battle, and I didn’t get a whole lot out of it. Even though I was feeling off, and the […]

  • Hymn #82: For All the Saints

    1. For all the Saints who from their labors rest, Who thee by faith before the world confessed, Thy name, O Jesus, be forever blest. I had never heard this hymn before, but it seems ideal for Conference weekend. The week over, we have a chance to take a break from our usual struggles, and […]

  • Hymn 264: Hark, All Ye Nations

    I love symbolism. One of the most satisfying feelings I know is when I learn or figure out a symbol, and a passage that was previously meaningless to me suddenly has a secret meaning that I now get. There’s almost a mental snick sound of intellectual puzzle pieces fitting together. A few years ago I […]

  • Hymn #28: Saints, Behold How Great Jehovah

    One of the passages of scripture I find most interesting is 2 Nephi, 25:24-27. In it we see  Nephi so thrilled about Christ’s upcoming birth that he’s gushing like a twitterpated teenager. Since for me, Christ’s life is ancient history, it’s not always easy to imagine a world where that wasn’t the case. But Nephi […]

  • Hymn #44: Beautiful Zion, Built Above

    Beautiful Zion, built above; Beautiful city that I love; Beautiful gates of pearly white; Beautiful temple–God its light; He who was slain on Calvary Opens those pearly gates for me. While it is beautiful, I am a little surprised this hymn made it into the LDS hymnbook. In the LDS church, we do think of […]

  • Hymn # 64: On this Day of Joy and Gladness

    “Worship” is a concept that has long puzzled me. It sounds formal to me, and my brain conjures up pictures of solemn and/or ecstatic chanting people, addressing God directly and praising him and probably burning incense, too. But the LDS church Sunday services aren’t big on that kind of stuff, and for a long time, […]