Tuesday, May 30, 2017

THE TEMPLE! THE TEMPLE! THE TEMPLE!



Growing up in Texas, the Temple was never a really big part of my life. It was over an hour away driving, if there was good traffic, so I only went when the youth in my ward went. I knew the Temple was important. I knew it was a good thing. I knew I wanted to enter its holy walls, but day to day, it was never a big part of my life.

My freshman year of college was basically the same boat. Though I lived in sight of the Logan Temple, and it was on my mind, I only went once or twice because I was so used to only going two to four times a year. Then I went home to Texas before the start of my mission, and received my Endowment—a sacred ordinance where we learn of God's Plan for us to return to His presence, making promises to him—in the Dallas Temple May 19, 2012.

From that time on, the Temple became more and more a part of my life. When my mission was finished, and I was going to USU again, I was going to the Temple at least once a week as a patron. I worked in the Temple twice. I made friends because of the Temple. I invited people I'd met to just go to the Temple with me. I would make occasions to go walk around the Temple grounds.

I went with my buddy Joey his first time doing Baptisms for the Dead. I did Initatories on weeks I had no time to go. Through most of this time, I would just walk the half hour to 45 minutes to get to the House of the Lord. The power of the Temple flowed into me as I did work there. 

My senior year at USU, I met Erik. For once, I found someone who loved the Temple just as much as I did. If the two of us were hanging out, chances are you could find us one of three places: campus, Pizza Pie Cafe, or a Temple. For as long as I knew Erik, whenever he saw a Temple, he would yell out, "THE TEMPLE! THE TEMPLE! THE TEMPLE!" unless we were entering. We fed off of each others' excitement for the Temple.

I thought I would always choose to be in places very close to Temples so I could always just hop right over and not worry about time or distance or gas. But as I was applying to graduate school, I felt really drawn to the University of Arizona. While the Tucson Temple has been under construction for the past few years, it's still 75 days away from being dedicated.

I learned in this time what it means to sacrifice for the Temple. I know there's plenty of others who sacrifice much more than I do to go to the Temple just once. But I spend 2 hours driving to the Temple, 2 hours at the Temple, and 2 hours driving home from the Temple. It's not something I can use every day or even every week. It is a sweet experience attempting to find a friend who wants to go with me, and going, sometimes with someone and sometimes alone.

But in about two and a half months, I will once more be in the shadow of a Temple, and I CAN NOT WAIT!

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