At 12 years old I obtained my recommend and was able to enter the Mt. Timpanogos temple for the first time to perform baptisms for the dead. I thought it was the neatest thing and I couldn't remember ever going to a place so peaceful in my entire life. I loved the feelings that I had there, I loved the work that was performed, and I wanted to be there all the time.
When I was a freshman in high school, one of my friends got the idea that our group of friends should start trying to go to the temple once a month (and of course, hit the local JCW's afterwards for ice cream), and I loved it. We made it a tradition and it is a habit that I like to keep up as best as I can even today.
|My cute friends and I at ages 14-15 after our monthly temple trip|
|Temple trip with some girls from my cross country team|
|Last temple trip I had with my best friend Spencer before he left for his mission to El Salvador the next day|
As much as I loved baptisms however, I was looking forward even more to going inside to receive my endowment and eventually be sealed to my eternal companion. I was originally so sad that I was going to have to wait until I was 21 or married to go inside, but when the age change happened and I had made the decision to serve a mission, I was ecstatic when I realized I could go inside as early as 18 years old when I received my mission call.
Well folks, after years of dreaming, my time came. I expressed to my Bishop in my home ward that I wanted to go through the temple as soon as I possibly could, because I could not wait to make the sacred covenants with Heavenly Father and attend as much as I could before serving my mission. He was totally supportive of my enthusiasm and told me as soon as I had my call, I could get going with my Bishopric and Stake Presidency over at BYU.
I received my mission call on September 8th, and in the weeks following I set up my appointments with my Bishop and Stake President in BYU ward. Both interviews were so amazing and I could hardly contain my enthusiasm. When I obtained my temple recommend and was told to enjoy the temple, I was practically skipping out of the clerks office. I was SO excited, and contacted my family to tell them the good news. They were thrilled for me, and I had to make the decision of which temple I wanted to go through.
I was honestly torn between Mt. Timpanogos and Draper. I loved Draper and thought it was beautiful, and many people recommended it to me for my first time because the sessions had a tendency to be smaller. However, Mt. Timpanogos had a special place in my heart because it was the first temple I had ever gone through and was my home temple. As silly as it was I was completely agonizing over the decision and was doing everything from praying about it to emailing my best friend on a mission to ask his advice.
Eventually, I made the decision to attend Mt. Timpanogos and I called and set my session for 8 o' clock on Thursday, October 1st. It was about a week away from the time I called, and I couldn't bear to wait any longer.
Finally, the day arrived. I was surprised to discover that along with my excitement though, there were some nerves. It hit me the magnitude of the covenants I was about to make and the change in lifestyle that I would undertake. I mean, I was a girl who was in love with her soccer shorts, and wearing garments wouldn't exactly work out with that. But, I knew it was the right thing to do and I was still so happy to learn more about my purpose on earth.
Before I went through, I received some amazing advice from loved ones. My parents reminded me that I was going to the Lord's house and had nothing to worry about, and Spencer advised me to focus on my feelings and the covenants I was making and the rest of the knowledge would come with time and experience.
I got out of my last class on Thursday and got dressed and then the nerves started up again like crazy. As I was driving home, I put on my MoTab Pandora station, and the song "I Am A Child of God" came on. The spirit reminded me that Heavenly Father was so proud of me, and I really felt His love. It was incredible and gave me all the excitement and reassurance I needed.
|Me outside the temple before I went in to receive my endowments|
In short...the temple was AMAZING. It was everything I had dreamed about and more. I felt the spirit so strongly and the peace and love I felt from my Heavenly Father was incredible. I received confirmation about my choice to serve a mission as well as knew that I had been called to the right place. I was filled with such warmth and happiness and I couldn't stop smiling the entire night. I LOVED my garments and the spirit that came from wearing them, as well as all the promises and blessings. The endowment was also amazing, and I loved every minute of it. The second it was over, I wanted to go back.
One of the coolest parts of the evening though was that one of the ordinance workers I came in contact with was one of my very favorite seminary teachers in high school. When Brother Hoffman walked in, I was so excited for that little tender mercy from Heavenly Father. He was so great and I loved getting to talk to him in the Celestial room afterwards.
As I left the temple, I felt like I was walking on air. People told me I looked like I was glowing, and I honestly felt like it. The temple was THE BEST. It is still the best. I try and attend every single week, because it is AMAZING.
I encourage everybody to attend the temple as much as possible, because it is truly such a divine gift. If you haven't received your endowments yet, be SO EXCITED! It is such an amazing and special experience, and nothing on earth can compare. Do whatever you need to in life to ensure the temple is constantly in your sights and goals, because it is such a blessing.
I have such a strong testimony of temples and I am so grateful that I live in a place where I am surrounded by so many. I am sad that after the MTC I will not have the chance to attend the temple on my mission, so I am trying to make the most of my time now. But really though, just as a recap...I LOVE THE TEMPLE SO MUCH! IT IS THE VERY BEST!
|Me with Sister Long and Sister Terry|
|Mommy and Daddy|
|I LOVED THE TEMPLE SO MUCH|
|So happy to have had my Dad in the temple with me|
|The beautiful Mount Timpanogos Temple|