By Maggie Scott
Attend early morning council meetings.
Stay awake through seven hours of school.
Check out of class to rush to a local choir performance.
Run to the auditorium for after-school rehearsal.
Book it to the recording studio for a quick session.
Hustle to the professional theater to make call time for the 7:30 show.
Get home around 12:00.
Read scriptures, say prayers, and crash before waking up again in 5 hours.
This is an average day in my life. It’s full of amazing opportunities and experiences- but it’s also full of distractions and challenges. Between music, theater, dance, film, commercial, and voice over work, my calendar hasn’t seen an empty day in about a decade. It’s easy to lose track of time, and to lose track of what matters most every single day.
Some days I’ve found myself sacrificing things for the sake of my dreams… I’ve missed out on some parties, some school dances, and a whole lot of sleep. But from day one, I made a commitment to myself that has made things much easier in the long: I promised that I would never sacrifice the gospel.
I once heard that “If you are too busy to read your scriptures and say your prayers, you are busier than God ever intended you to be”. Keeping my crazy schedule balanced is extremely difficult; but I’ve felt a real, tangible difference between days I remember to take time for God, and days I don’t. Even if it’s just listening to a few Book of Mormon verses on the way home from a show, or to school in the morning, it makes a difference. And I know, we’ve all heard a million times that reading scriptures is the most important thing… but I never realized how it truly makes a difference until I found myself relying on it.
A while ago I started to become so overwhelmed with everything I needed to get done, and whimsically dreamed about having a time turner to help me out with it all. My fellow Harry Potter fans will recognize the reference: A time turner is the small device Hermione Granger uses to relive hours of the day so she can get everything done that she needs to. Wouldn’t it be GREAT to have something like that?
The funny thing is, my scriptures have quite literally become a time-turner in my life. On days when I think there’s no way I can finish all that I need to get done, the scriptures seem like the first thing that can go. But when I sacrifice time to read, somehow I always find time somewhere else to get everything done. I truly can’t explain it in any other way than divine intervention; when I sacrifice time for the gospel, God helps me find time for the rest.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s not easy. There are days when I’m up until 2 AM finishing homework or editing a music video, or up at 5 AM filming an audition for another project. But somehow it always gets done when I remember to focus on what matters most. Just as one of my favorite EFY songs says,
“What matters most is to follow him and believe.
What matters most is to love someone in need.
Be still, and know he will always keep us close,
and show us what matters most.”
I testify that God loves each one of his children INDIVIDUALLY. Thus, he cares about what we care about, and will ENDLESSLY support us in it as long as we put him first. I know that he has truly been “on [my] right hand and on [my] left”(D&C 84:88) as I’ve chased dreams and passions in life that align with the teachings of the gospel and spread light to the world.
I also know that he expects us not to forget him. We DO have to sacrifice certain things to keep up our end of the covenant: to remember him at all times, in all things, and in all places. That may be choosing not to participate in a project that contradicts the teachings of the gospel, or carefully choosing words and actions that provide spiritual light for those around you. But the sacrifices we make for the Lord are those that build our eternity into more than we can even imagine it becoming.
My most recent music video, a cover of “He’ll Carry You”, illustrates perfectly what is possible when we put God first. Some of my favorite lines are,
“In the moments when no earthly words
can take away your sorrow
And no human eyes could see what you're going through
When you've taken your last step, and done all that you can do
He will lift your heavy load and carry you.”
I’ve truly seen this testament in my own life. I know that God is aware of what each one of us are going through. I know that if we do “all that [we] can do”, and put him first, he will make up the difference and carry us through what we can’t survive alone. I promise, he will. Every. Single. Time.
I know that as we strive to focus on what is most important, the pieces that are supposed to fall into place will fall correctly. One of my all-time favorite quotes is by Elder Richard G. Scott, and has dictated much of what I do in my life. It reminds me daily that keeping an eternal perspective is key, that sometimes sacrificing now will allow us to have the best possible future. He says, “Don’t give up something you want most in life for something you think you want now”.
You may find yourself sacrificing one good for another as you fight for your dreams. But never forget the person who has made it all possible for you… and always have the courage to put the gospel first. Use the time-turner you’ve been given, and sacrifice for God if necessary. When you do, I promise you’ll find the only sacrifices you make are those that shape your eternal destiny into the best it can be.
Maggie Scott was singing and dancing before she could ever walk and talk. She has been in nearly fifty stage productions across the state of Utah, and performed on America’s Got Talent in Radio City Music Hall in New York, Los Angeles, Japan, and France as a proud member of One Voice Children’s Choir. She is represented by TMG Agency, and has also been in multiple films, commercials, and voice overs. She has soloed on the viral YouTube video "When You Believe", and released multiple music videos and live covers on her own YouTube channel, which has accumulated over 130K views in the past year. Maggie says, "Music helps me through anything and everything. I hope that, by sharing my music, I will be able to help someone else, too!"
Maggie's passions also include acting and all parts of Musical Theater, and some of her favorite roles to play have been Dorothy in "The Wizard of Oz", Kathy Selden in “Singin’ in the Rain”, Annie in "Annie", Jane Banks in "Mary Poppins", Mary Lennox in "The Secret Garden", and Miri Larendaughter in the world premiere of "Princess Academy: The Musical" based on Shannon Hale's bestselling novel. She was awarded "Best Actress" from PlayUtah for her performance as Mary Lennox in "The Secret Garden" at Hale Center Theater Orem. Her passion for performing has taken her far in her short seventeen years, and she is thrilled at what the future has in store. “Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all”, she says. “It would be an awful waste to settle for the second option.”
Maggie is also a proud member of her high school seminary council, addicted to family history, and loves learning about LDS church history. You can find her at the temple almost every Tuesday morning at 6:00 sharp and singing in church anytime she can convince the bishop to let her. Her role model is Emma Smith, she loves the stories of Mary Elizabeth Rollins and Alma the Younger, and she is most excited for the day she will be able to be sealed in the temple and begin building her own eternity.
You can find more of her music and follow along with all her adventures here: