September 3, 2013
Highlight of my week was being able to attend the temple in Billings, Montana on Wednesday. 6 hours of driving one way and I was one of the drivers both ways but I would have driven days to get to the temple, it was all so worth it.
Words really do not even begin to describe the experience I had....
But after praying about it, I feel that I should do my best in describing a very personal and sacred experience I had within the temple. I went back and forth in my head if I should share such an experience with all of you. And if I did share it, should it be by email? But I have prayed about it and feel I should share it.
The first few verses in Moroni Ch.6 came to my mind where it says that the members of the church did meet together often to speak of the welfare of their souls and to share testimony one with another. I cannot meet with all of you in person but know I am strengthened and edified by reading your testimonies by letter or email and hope by me sharing the following experience and my testimony and can be a strength to at least one of you...
We as a Zone (18 missionaries) entered the temple and had a meeting with the Billings Montana Temple President in the chapel of the temple, 1 hour prior to our session. President Jordan spoke to us there and taught me many things and shared many of his personal stories that were a strength to me. The spirit was so strong and it was beyond amazing.
He shared a story of a young man from Casper, Wyoming who's father had passed away. This boy's father was a large Tongan man. The boy's mother remarried and the young man was bitter. He was angry and bitter about the entire situation and was rude to all he came into contact with. But he had passed the interview and somewhat begrudgingly went with the other youth of his ward to the Billings Temple to do baptisms for the dead. There in the temple, this young man sat in the chair and was being confirmed for the dead by a temple worker who did not know the boy or his situation. The temple worker was lifting his hands after only the second name when clear as could be, he heard a voice in his head. The voice was in a thick Tongan accent and it said, "This is my son and I need you to deliver a message from me to him. Tell him I love him and am proud of him." The temple worker leaned forward and told the young man "Your father is here and he has given me a message to give you... He loves you and is proud of you." This young man looked at the stranger who was the Temple worker and began to sob as he felt the presence of his father. His hard heart became soft and the Spirit of the Lord could enter and bear witness of the truthfulness of what he was experiencing. The boy left the confirmation room with tears still running down his cheeks and as he entered the room where the baptismal font was, he looked up and saw a large Tongan man smiling upon his son.
As President Jordan told us this story with tears in his eyes, the Spirit overwhelmed me and I began to sob for 2 reasons. One reason is because the Spirit bore witness to me that the story was true. And the second reason... My dear grandma passed away in March at the beginning of my mission. I sat there in the temple and sobbed because I felt her presence there with me and I knew she was there with me to be my guide in the temple that day.
And she was.
I felt her presence at my side the entire time I was in the temple. My testimony grew leaps and bounds because I felt the power of Heaven in a very real way. I know with no doubt whatsoever that my grandma and my loved ones are there on the other side fulfilling missions and watching over me.
I know there is life after death. I know that all is possible through my Savior Jesus Christ. He died for me, He paid the price for me and for all of us! But He did not only die for us, He broke the bands of death and He LIVES for us! Because He broke the bands of death, we too will all be resurrected and physically reunited with our family and loved ones. But until that reunion, I know that my loved ones are there, looking out for me. I felt the truth of it in the House of the Lord in an undeniable way. I know my Redeemer lives. This is His church and He is at the head of this work.
If any of you find your testimony lacking in any area... Pray and ask God, that is the message of the Restoration, if any of us lack wisdom then ask God and the promise is He will answer you.
I know that God's promise is real and is true, I bear witness of these things in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.