We belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. For us, that means our church building we attend every Sunday is called the chapel. We take Sacrament there, and listen to talks, and sing songs in a very modest and simple service before scampering off to Sunday School.
But we also have holy temples, where we do sacred ordinances to seal families together. This is where we go to get married, so that there is no “until death do us part”. It is where we brought the children after they were adopted, so that even when any of us die, we can still be a family. Even after death, like when my mom was killed, I could do ordinances for her so the ordinances were completed in mortality – though she still gets the choices to accept them in her behalf or not. But our temples are quiet places of worship, and special places where we come to pray and offer our thanks and give service as well.
Our closest temple is in Oklahoma City.
It was a lovely thing to come today, this beautiful and crisp day after the storms, to thank Heavenly Father for so much protection from the storms of life and so much provision through impossible times.
We have to have a temple recommend to get inside, the way you have to have a driver’s license to drive. We get this in an interview with our bishop, during which we talk about covenant keeping. Heavenly Father provided salvation for all of us through what the Savior did for us, and the way we live our lives gives evidence of our accepting that gift. We don’t earn salvation, but being faithful back to Him is a natural response when He has done so much for us! We pay our tithing, remain faithful to our spouse, do not use pornography, do not smoke or drink alcohol or use drugs, we serve in our callings (as our church does not have paid clergy, so we all take turns in different roles), and we are asked to be honest and do honest work and be kind to others.
Nathan and I take turns inside, while the other plays with the children. We have so many fun family traditions, from songs to stories, and from flowers to fountains. And always the ladybugs! It is always a special day when we get to come to the temple!
Soon our temple will be closing for about two years for renovations, and during that time we will have to go all the way to Dallas or St. Louis or Kansas City for our temple trips!
But when it re-opens, there will be several weeks that it is completely open to the public! Anyone can go tour just to see! Please remember this, and go see while you can! I will post reminders, of course, because it is so exciting to have opportunity to share.
After the open house, we will have a special meeting where the temple is rededicated as a holy place again, and then we will need our temple recommends – and the daily spiritual preparation that requires – to get inside once more.