Julie Chambers’ life changed for eternity in December 2012.
She was going to college in Pennsylvania when her roommate, a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints took her to visit a friend. He was preparing to serve a mission for the LDS Church. That’s how Chambers first met the missionaries.
After a missionary made a comparison of gospel principles to football, Chambers began to read The Book of Mormon.
“At first I hated it,” Chambers said. “I was like, ‘I don’t understand this. I don’t get what you’re saying. Who’s this Nephi guy?’ And then, (a friend) helped me get through the first chapters, and when I made it to (The Book of) Jacob, I was like, ‘I’m gonna get baptized.’”
She said she decided to get baptized on Dec. 15, 2012, and was baptized Dec. 30, 2012.
“Once I decided, it was like, ‘Boom! Done.’” Chambers said.
Chambers eventually served a mission in Santa Rosa, California.
“I’m the only member in my family,” Chambers said. “My dad is actually a non-denominational preacher, so he was not very happy with me going, ‘Hey I want to be baptized, and I’m gonna be Mormon,’ but my mom, she was like, ‘If the worst thing you do when you go to college is join a church, I’m OK with that.’”
She said the first time she heard the prophet speak was at a Christmas devotional.
“It was super boring all the way through, and then Thomas S. Monson stood up,” she said. “I was like, ‘Something’s different about this guy. Who is this man?’ My friend said he was the prophet, and I thought, ‘The way I feel when I listen to him is different than any other person, and I want to find out why.’”
She said the Christmas devotional solidified her desire to learn more about the Church. She said she needed answers and she needed to find out why she felt so different at the conference.
She said the current general conference is her first time being in Salt Lake City during the event, so she was excited.
“Just being in this building you get goosebumps,” she said. “The Spirit is so incredible.”
She said the experience so far is completely different from watching general conference on her television.
“At home there’s a lot of distraction,” Chambers said. “For me, if I want to get something done, I have to get dressed. At home, when you watch conference, it’s very easy to sit in your PJs, snack on food and miss the point, miss the Spirit, miss the feeling that you get. Watching people get excited about conference, it adds to it.”
Chambers said her life was completely different before joining the Church. She said general conference has helped her change.
“I lived a very instant-decision, instant-gratification life before I joined the Church,” Chambers said. “Having seen general conference, I’ve been able to feel and know of the Spirit, and I know that things happen for a reason.”
Chambers said teaching primary children taught her the most. She said when she had questions, the children gave clear answers that made the gospel seem clear to her.
Chambers advised others to attend primary if they had questions.
“Most of all, don’t give up, and read your scriptures,” she said.