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Tuesday, March 8, 2011

I Love to See the Temple...

Can I just say, I am completely stoked about the Atlanta Temple reopening!  And with all the craziness that's going on to get things set up for the cultural celebration, it makes me even more antsy then a kid on Christmas Eve.  Seriously!  How can I not be excited?!


With something of this magnitude comes the very awesome ability to tour most parts of the temple during their open house.  We went to Nauvoo several years ago during their open house and it was such an amazing experience.  This is a chance for people, members and non-members alike, to tour some of the most beautiful buildings that have been designed.  We are also given the opportunity to work one of the days.  I volunteered to be an usher the morning of April 19th and I couldn't be more excited!!

But hold up...there's more excited events coming up!  Mom, Aunt Judy, Melissa, and I leave on Friday to head up to Nashville for Time Out for Women.  While I was on my independent, away from church path, it was the one thing that my mom could get me to go to that involved church.  It's not a church-run event or even church sponsored, I think.  But it is run by LDS members.  They do an amazing job at organizing speakers, mostly members but not always, that bring such an inspirational aura to the group of women that flock to cities across the country.  We have been to 5 as a group going to Nashville twice, Colombia once, and Atlanta twice.  I'm so excited to be heading back up to Nashville.  And before the evening festivities begin, we'll be doing a session at the temple in the morning!  Completely thrilled!!

The following Saturday the Mill Creek Branch will be taking a trip to Birmingham to do baptisms.  Guess who will be skipping out on class early for that.  Ü  THIS KID!  Two temple trips in one month.  Can you tell I <3 temples? 

THEN...Michael and I leave on the April 2nd for Salt Lake City.  My glorious cousin Raylynn was able to snag four tickets from my uncle for the Sunday afternoon session.  Why Sunday afternoon?  Because President Monson always closes.  Ü  And since he is my absolute favorite, I couldn't think of a better time!  We'll spend a few days there, hopefully seeing old friends from my BYU days and head home on the 6th.  While I'm so excited to get away from work for this little bit of time, I'm especially excited to just to go out there.  Who would have thought I'd ever be excited to go back to Utah?  =P

But that's not all!  I'll be returning to Utah over Memorial Day weekend for one of my best friend's wedding.  My amazing "adopted" brother, Michael L., in Augusta will be getting sealed to his astounding fiance in the Draper Temple.  And I couldn't not be more elated to be flying out there.  I'm so excited to be a part of this memorable day for them and will hopefully capture all the magical moments that it entails.

So let me just take a moment to try to put into words my love for temples.  It is such an amazing and enriching feeling to be part of something that stems down into generations and generations of families past.  The ordinances and work that are done within those beautiful walls are something that touches not just the people that have passed on into the next life, but they touch my heart in a way that words can't describe.  Doing baptisms or sealings or whatever else by proxy is an opportunity that I will never again take for granted.  It's giving these tender souls a second chance at something amazing, something that was brought back to this Earth.

I am so grateful to be apart of this religion that allows me to take part in something so special, something so cherished.  I am so grateful for my Savior and for all the things that he has done to make all of this possible for his children on Earth, past and present - and especially future.  I am ever so grateful for that young boy who at 14 years old had the courage to find the truth and whose courage would eventually lead him to his very untimely death, but not before he established one of the most amazing churches in the world.  I am so blessed.  I have never felt it like I have in the last year and a half.  My heart is full and I can't come up with the words to express the remaining feelings that I'd like to share.

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