Today I took family names to the temple for the first time. My own family names. As in NAMES THAT I FOUND MYSELF WHO ARE DIRECT RELATIVES TO MYSELF. Like Emily, I am blessed enough to be in a family that has already done most of the temple work, at least the easy stuff. But I found a line that had been neglected, and I hit pay dirt—well, at least for a few names, anyway. And it is SO COOL to find these people, to pluck them off the family tree, fresh and ripe. And it was so sweet to go to the temple today with my husband and 12-year-old and do baptisms. I felt like a missionary seeing my investigators baptized.
I want to say here that I have a testimony of the temple. There’s a lot of stuff I don’t understand the significance of, and sometimes I get little a-ha moments about meanings or possible symbolisms here and there. But that’s not what I mean when I say I have a testimony of it. What I mean is that I have felt the spirit there. I have felt God’s love for me there. It is there that I have most clearly realized the amazing value of a single soul—my soul, and everyone else’s. I feel God’s parent-ness most there. When I’m there, I feel my soul being turned like you turn that dohicky on the front of the video camera to change it’s focus from something in the foreground to something further away (but more important), or vice-versa. “Oh yeah,” my spirit sighs, “here and now is what matters. The being-ness of things. Of souls and spirits and God and eternity.”
One of my very favorite hymns is “If You Could Hie to Kolob.” Maybe because its haunting tune and words that speak of endlessness remind me of the temple and of eternal capacity, eternal potential. THAT’S what I love about the gospel: always there is hope, grace, potential, growth, for as long as I’m willing to choose it.