Temple Talk

When I am trying to prepare a talk, especially one about the temple or other sacred things, it is very difficult for me to stay in my body.

What I mean to say, is that there are some things that can only be learned Spirit to spirit.

And it is one thing for me to lay in the crisp air, pondering in the sunshine underneath clouds and amongst the rain of autumn leaves floating down around me, or to sit in holy spaces full of lights and white and gold, and to be filled with layers of knowledge that carry me away into visions of love unfolding.

It is an entirely different thing to try and capture it in words, to try and pin down butterfly-like visions that flit about and carry me on bolted wings, or to pick through postcards for entire essays.

It is nearly impossible, you see, because to write and type uses fingers, and to try to speak of what I know uses words far too confining.

And I know so little.

But what I know is of spirit-nature, and not of temporal-nature, and so writing what I know becomes painful as I squeeze my spirit back into my body in order to record the words to say, and I feel pulled away to soak in more, but must stay in my skin enough to stay alive.

My life, though, comes from Spirit things, while my work is to testify of them.  The words come in eons of visions, and the clock ticks little.  Things to share get squeezed on a page, and all the time is gone.  I try to bridge the worlds with fasting legs and a prayerful heart, knowing it is only my mind-spirit that can live in both places, until later.

Until later, when my body – now both fresh and decaying – is made new and eternal.

I had to write about writing because my bones were on fire, and there are things I cannot say but only invite you to see.

Pick a day to fast, so your body can make room for more things of spirit-nature.

Carve out time to pray, knowing he is shaping you, every day.

Wake early, or steal a quiet afternoon, or sit under the stars and read to prepare yourself and invite the Spirit that is our teacher:

Psalm 24:3-5

3 Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord? or who shall stand in his holy place?

4 He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully.

He shall receive the blessing from the Lord, and righteousness from the God of his salvation.

Isaiah 2:1-3

The word that Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem.

And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the Lord’s house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it.

And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.

Haggai 1:6-8

Ye have sown much, and bring in little; ye eat, but ye have not enough; ye drink, but ye are not filled with drink; ye clothe you, but there is none warm; and he that earneth wages earneth wages to put it into a bag with holes.

¶Thus saith the Lord of hosts; Consider your ways.

Go up to the mountain, and bring wood, and build the house; and I will take pleasure in it, and I will be glorified, saith the Lord.

John 5:25

25 Verily, verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live.

1 Peter 4:6

For for this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit.

D&C 132:15-17

15 Therefore, if a man marry him a wife in the world, and he marry her not by me nor by my word, and he covenant with her so long as he is in the world and she with him, their covenant and marriage are not of force when they are dead, and when they are out of the world; therefore, they are not bound by any law when they are out of the world.

16 Therefore, when they are out of the world they neither marry nor are given in marriage; but are appointed angels in heaven, which angels are ministering servants, to minister for those who are worthy of a far more, and an exceeding, and an eternal weight of glory.

17 For these angels did not abide my law; therefore, they cannot be enlarged, but remain separately and singly, without exaltation, in their saved condition, to all eternity; and from henceforth are not gods, but are angels of God forever and ever.

2 Nephi 12:2-3

And it shall come to pass in the last days, when the mountain of the Lord’s house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills, and all nations shall flow unto it.

And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths; for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.

D&C 124:25-28

25 And again, verily I say unto you, let all my saints come from afar.

26 And send ye swift messengers, yea, chosen messengers, and say unto them: Come ye, with all your gold, and your silver, and your precious stones, and with all your antiquities; and with all who have knowledge of antiquities, that will come, may come, and bring the box tree, and the fir tree, and the pine tree, together with all the precious trees of the earth;

27 And with iron, with copper, and with brass, and with zinc, and with all your precious things of the earth; and build a house to my name, for the Most High to dwell therein.

28 For there is not a place found on earth that he may come to and restore again that which was lost unto you, or which he hath taken away, even the fulness of the priesthood.

D&C 128:18

18 I might have rendered a plainer translation to this, but it is sufficiently plain to suit my purpose as it stands. It is sufficient to know, in this case, that the earth will be smitten with a curse unless there is a welding link of some kind or other between the fathers and the children, upon some subject or other—and behold what is that subject? It is the baptism for the dead. For we without them cannot be made perfect; neither can they without us be made perfect. Neither can they nor we be made perfect without those who have died in the gospel also; for it is necessary in the ushering in of the dispensation of the fulness of times, which dispensation is now beginning to usher in, that a whole and complete and perfect union, and welding together of dispensations, and keys, and powers, and glories should take place, and be revealed from the days of Adam even to the present time. And not only this, but those things which never have been revealed from the foundation of the world, but have been kept hid from the wise and prudent, shall be revealed unto babes and sucklings in this, the dispensation of the fulness of times.

D&C 131:1-4

In the celestial glory there are three heavens or degrees;

And in order to obtain the highest, a man must enter into this order of the priesthood [meaning the new and everlasting covenant of marriage];

And if he does not, he cannot obtain it.

He may enter into the other, but that is the end of his kingdom; he cannot have an increase.

Exodus 28:2-3, 35-36, 40-43

2  And thou shalt make holy garments for Aaron thy brother for glory and for beauty.

And thou shalt speak unto all that are wise hearted, whom I have filled with the spirit of wisdom, that they may make Aaron’s garments to consecrate him, that he may minister unto me in the priest’s office.

35  And it shall be upon Aaron to minister: and his sound shall be heard when he goeth in unto the holy place before the Lord, and when he cometh out, that he die not.

36 ¶And thou shalt make a plate of pure gold, and grave upon it, like the engravings of a signet, Holiness to the Lord.

40 ¶And for Aaron’s sons thou shalt make coats, and thou shalt make for them girdles, and bonnets shalt thou make for them, for glory and for beauty.

41 And thou shalt put them upon Aaron thy brother, and his sons with him; and shalt anoint them, and consecrate them, and sanctify them, that they may minister unto me in the priest’s office.

4And thou shalt make them linen breeches to cover their nakedness; from the loins even unto the thighs they shall reach:

4And they shall be upon Aaron, and upon his sons, when they come in unto the tabernacle of the congregation, or when they come near unto the altar to minister in the holy place; that they bear not iniquity, and die: it shall be a statute for ever unto him and his seed after him.

Exodus 29:4-9, 43-46

And Aaron and his sons thou shalt bring unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, and shalt wash them with water.

And thou shalt take the garments, and put upon Aaron the coat, and the robe of the ephod, and the ephod, and the breastplate, and gird him with the curious girdle of the ephod:

And thou shalt put the mitre upon his head, and put the holy crown upon the mitre.

Then shalt thou take the anointing oil, and pour it upon his head, and anoint him.

And thou shalt bring his sons, and put coats upon them.

And thou shalt gird them with girdles, Aaron and his sons, and put the bonnets on them: and the priest’s office shall be theirs for a perpetual statute: and thou shalt consecrate Aaron and his sons.

43 And there I will meet with the children of Israel, and the tabernacle shall be sanctified by my glory.

44 And I will sanctify the tabernacle of the congregation, and the altar: I will sanctify also both Aaron and his sons, to minister to me in the priest’s office.

45 ¶And I will dwell among the children of Israel, and will be their God.

46 And they shall know that I am the Lord their God, that brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, that I may dwell among them: I am the Lord their God.

Isaiah 22:21-25

21  And I will clothe him with thy robe, and strengthen him with thy girdle, and I will commit thy government into his hand: and he shall be a father to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and to the house of Judah.

2And the key of the house of David will I lay upon his shoulder; so he shall open, and none shall shut; and he shall shut, and none shall open.

23 And I will fasten him as a nail in a sure place; and he shall be for a glorious throne to his father’s house.

24 And they shall hang upon him all the glory of his father’s house, the offspring and the issue, all vessels of small quantity, from the vessels of cups, even to all the vessels of flagons.

25 In that day, saith the Lord of hosts, shall the nail that is fastened in the sure place be removed, and be cut down, and fall; and the burden that was upon it shall be cut off: for the Lord hath spoken it.

Also recommended:

1 Kings 5-9

Ezra 3-6

Ezekiel 40-46

And go to the temple: slowly, and quietly, and carefully.

Temple Ordinances: Ancient and Modern will be presented
at the Tulsa, Oklahoma Stake Center
in Bartlesville on Sunday, 9 November at 7pm.

About Emily

I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints since 2009. I serve as a Chaplain, and work as a counselor. I got bilateral cochlear implants in 2010, but will always love sign language. I choose books over television, and organics over processed. Nothing is as close to flying as ballroom dancing - except maybe running, when in the solo mood. I would rather be outside than anywhere else, especially at the river riding my bike or kayaking. PhD in Marriage and Family Therapy, and currently doing a post-doc in Jewish Studies and an MDiv in Pastoral Counseling. The best thing about Emily World is that it's always an adventure, even if (not so) grammatically precise. The only thing better than writing is being married to a writer. Nathan Christensen and I were married in the Oklahoma City temple on 13 October 2012, and have since fostered more than eighty-five children. We have adopted the six who stayed, and are totally and completely and helplessly in love with our family. Nathan writes musical theater, including "Broadcast" (a musical history of the radio) and an adaption of Lois Lowry's "The Giver". He served his mission in South Korea, has taught song-writing in New York City public schools, and worked as a theater critic for a Tucson newspaper. This is not an official Web site of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.


Temple Talk — 2 Comments

  1. Wow Emily; really enjoyed. I’m speaking in our Stake Conference Leadership Meeting this Saturday on how Temple Attendance has blessed our ward in the past year or so and your talk was most helpful; I’m so happy Stephanie shared it with me. The blessings have been amazing as we have seen miracle after miracle occur. About 8 mos. ago and before, we were averaging just a few on our monthly designated Ward Temple Session (5-6 est.). After Ward Council decided to make it a priority, we had about 30 in the next month (with almost 50 total because we also had a Baptism Session going on as well as Child Care for those in Temple. Each month since then has been along the same line culminating with about 60 signed up from our Ward on our Stake Temple Day. Anyway, what has happened is nothing less than miracle after miracle. Our Sacrament Attendance has increased by 40++ each week, Missionary Work has intensified, We have had Marriages brought from shaky to more solid, We have had members who had decided not to return actually return to activity and have already made it back to the Temple –and there is an increased closeness within the Ward. Perhaps it is coincidental but as a ward we don’t believe that. Specifically almost every blessing outlined in Section 109 (Kirtland Temple Dedication) has been realized. As I am reviewing my talk for Saturday, I have a hard time not tearing up as I see how the ward has been touched by the Temple. The only problem is after reading your talk, I’m going to have to Borrow some of your scriptures and thoughts to complete; you have such a beautiful way of bringing the Spirit to your words. Anyway, your words couldn’t have been more timely. Also, though I don’t see you on the regular basis that I used to, reading your comments brought such a smile to my thoughts as I reflected back on you. In fact, your name comes up often in our conversations as Stephanie relates so many of your life experiences that you share in your Blog. Thanks so much. Pete Updike