For the past nine years our family lived in Arizona. Our regular routine a few times per week over the course of the past year or more was to drive by the newly built LDS Gilbert Temple. We watched it go from open fields, to the cornerstone, to beautiful stone set in place followed by awesomely designed windows with Arizona’s heritage in mind.
Every day that we drove past our youngest would yell “Temple!” We would all love to stop and watch this House of the Lord be built less than 10 minutes from our home.
Our first trip to the new temple site was at the temporary Visitor’s Center. Here we saw the layout, the beautiful window above, and each of my children received a piece of the temple: a large stone wall broke on it’s way to Arizona and was given out to all who visited.
We loved our regular “drive by’s”, always going out of our way to pass the temple to see what new bit of work had been done that day.
Early family nights were scheduled so we could visit the Visitors Center without the crowds,
and park days were a treat with the Temple in the background.
You could say the building of the Temple gave us greater perspective. We looked forward to it’s dedication more than anything else.
When we received the prompting to move out of state it would be fair to say we were heart broken. Our daughter would miss the opportunity to participate in the Cultural Celebration. We would miss the dedication. My hearts desires would not be fulfilled.
Isn’t that the question of the lifetimes?
I have come to realize that this is my sacrifice. I don’t understand. I won’t try to understand, that will only drive me crazy. But for some reason we were meant to miss these sacred events.
We all have sacrifices to make. Sacrifices that tear into our hearts and make us weep with pain. Abraham was asked to sacrifice his son. The Father did sacrifice His Son. So many faithful saints along the way have sacrificed their families and ease of living to follow the direction of the Lord. This article is an Open Letter to the Youth, which speaks of so much sacrifice and has prompted me to share a small bit of our experience : Open Letter to the Youth
I won’t know why our family had to miss this experience.
But here’s what I do know:
I know that I, a mere mortal, have tunnel vision, but the Lord sees all. Sometimes he asks for a 1 degree course correction, if I will only follow.
I know that the Lord knows what is right for our family, and that if I am obedient I will be blessed.
I know that the Temple of the Lord is where I can go to find greater peace and understanding.
I know that I am grateful for the opportunity I had to watch the Gilbert Temple be built, to share that experience with my children, to help them feel a greater love and appreciation for the temple.
I know that I am grateful for my dear friends who have shared a bit of their own experiences with us.
I know that I am grateful for the internet, to be able to watch the Cultural Celebration live from so far away.
I know that I am grateful to be a member of the Lord’s church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.