First Person: What the Temple Means to Me
~by Michelle B.
The temple, to me, is the pinnacle of our experience in the gospel and in this life. We talk about the Atonement. Serving in the temple is the Atonement in action. I once heard someone explain this point: Every time we attend the temple, we need to forgive someone of something. Even if it is forgiving ourselves, we need to partake of the Atonement in this way.
When I think about that, I usually equate the Atonement with repentance and being saved from our sinful, mortal lives. What better way to show our gratitude than by serving in the temple and doing for others what the Saviour has done for us. We are providing ordinances of salvation to those who have gone on before us and doing for them what they cannot do for themselves.
We talk of service. We know from the scriptures that if we don’t have charity, we have nothing. I believe one of the greatest forms of service we can render is to serve in the temple.
We talk of finding peace and being in the world but not of the world. When we enter the temple, we leave the world behind us. We enter the REAL world. If we could draw back the veil, we would see that we are not alone in the temples. Not only do I believe those people for whom we are acting as proxy in receiving the ordinances are there, but I believe there are countless people and prophets from ages past also very aware of what we are doing.
The temple is like an open conduit to heaven. In temples, we can receive revelation and inspiration we are searching for.
I know and have experienced the sweet peace the temple brings. I know that as we serve in the temple on a regular basis, every facet of our lives can be better, and we can find more time in our day to do those things that will make the biggest difference in our eternal salvation. I have seen this blessings of temple service in action too many times to doubt. I believe there is nothing in life that cannot be made better by attending the temple on a regular basis.
I know people who went through the temple once [receiving the ordinances for themselves] and then never came back. It saddens me to know they have missed that the temple is about service — service to the Lord, to others and to ourselves. It is about the Atonement. It is becoming something greater than ourselves and the only way that can happen is if we unselfishly lift others with us.
I am grateful for the conviction and testimony I have of the temple. I am grateful for the peace, serenity, and comfort being within its walls offers in such an unsettling world. I am grateful for the opportunity to serve the Lord and others, showing my love and gratitude for the many blessings given to me. I am grateful for the opportunity to serve my family and my ancestors. Mostly, I am grateful for a safe haven in which to commune with my Saviour.