I feel so blessed to live in such close proximity to a number of LDS temples. I remind myself often (especially in those moments when my attitude is poor and I don't feel like making the sacrifice to get there) what a tremendous gift it is to be able to go less than 30 minutes in either direction and attend a temple. If we ventured a bit further, our options become even greater. Man alive, I'm thankful for that! I truly love the temple and feel it a true sanctuary of peace and perspective. I have no doubt it blesses my family's life, and I'm even more blessed because my dear husband appreciates it just as much as I do and so we attend as regularly as possible together.
This summer our family looked forward to the time when we could go to the Brigham City Temple Open House and walk through another of these amazing, holy places together as a family. Last November was one of the most sacred, special days of my life as we all entered the Bountiful Temple and had our adopted baby, Berkley, sealed to us for eternity. It was an experience I will never forget. The air was thick with the spirit and I wept constantly from feelings of joy and gratitude so strong I thought my heart would burst. Here was now another opportunity to go as a family, although not for quite as special a reason.
|Here was a little brochure about the temple. Isn't it so beautiful?|
Following our quick photo shoot, we went around back and got in line. Although it was extremely hot and a bit stuffy, the short video they showed us was a beautiful preparation for going inside. And walking through that beautiful structure with my kids in tow absolutely made my heart soar. I just kept wanting to stop and tell them how much I loved each room and how meaningful it all was. I wanted to take a moment right then and there and share with them my testimony of the sacred work that goes on within the walls of each temple and the blessings and promises from each covenant made. But, of course, there was not time for such a personal experience, so I had to be satisfied with simply walking through and enjoying each beautiful painting and chandelier and feeling in every space. I hoped my children were able to take it all in and set personal goals to go there themselves one day when they are old enough to understand and make promises to God. Oh, how I love my children and husband! To know I can be with them forever is the source of my greatest joy.
After we walked through the tour and refreshed ourselves with some water and cookies, we proceeded to go outside and walk around the outer walls. I remembered hearing a talk once about the powerful spirit that surrounds the temple, both inside and out. I don't recall all the specifics but one thing stuck with me--if our children can even simply touch the walls of the temple, they can feel some of the spirit that is there. I watched my children as they walked around and then I got some pictures that just moved my soul.
That last one is my favorite. Even Berkley is looking up. It is so symbolic to me. Tears stung my eyes as I thought to myself, If I can only teach my children to look up--up to God for all things--they will be okay. My heart took a picture right along with my camera.
We ended the day with homemade pizza at a pizzeria and shakes from Peach City--not at all healthy, but wow, was it all delicious. It was definitely an excursion worth taking. And taking it together as a family was especially memorable. I know many people who aren't Mormons wonder what in the world takes place in these incredible buildings and why only church members in good standing can go inside. All I can say is, each temple is a holy, sacred place of learning--learning about God and His plan for His children and how we can return to live with Him again someday. Our hearts have to be humble and prepared for such tutelage and so it's not open to just anybody, but for whomever does choose to live in a way worthy for entrance and participation, it is oh, so worth it. The invitation is truly open to all. I hope and pray I will always accept it and never take it for granted. I truly love to see the temple!
|One more picture of the whole edifice as we walked back to our car. It was such a beautiful day.|