Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Facing our "tents" toward the temple

Have I mentioned that there are 100 reasons why I LOVE my little house? (There are a few things I would change if I could too, but that is not what this post is about.)We found our house in April (of 2005) when the peach tree and cherry tree were in full bloom. And I instantly fell in love with the creek that runs through our back yard. I absolutely love that I get to fall asleep to every night April-October. I thought that these were the house's best features.

One night after we got married I found my very favorite thing about my house, from our front yard, you can see the bountiful temple. It may be miles away, it is just a bright little speck in in the distance, but you know what it is.

I loved it because it reminded me of when King Benjamin called his people to come to the temple. When they had gathered,"they pitched their tents round about the temple, every man having his atent with the door thereof towards the temple."  My door was towards the temple! I don't know if it would have been something on my list of things to look for in a house, it happened quite by miracle, but I loved it. The temple is only visible from my door by night. Yet it serves as a beacon in the darkness. A shimmering speck of light in the blackness. 
King Benjamin's address reminds me so much of general conference. So much that we studied his address in school a couple of days leading up to conference, and even the Monday after. We acted out the story with our camo teepee, and hearth. I loved watching the kids take turns pretending to be King Benjamin.
As I studied the story of King Benjamin, I realized that there were more similarities between General Conference and the event written about by Mosiah than just the gathering of all of the saints.
Or at least there SHOULD be more! I remember learning this story in Seminary. I remember my Seminary teacher really digging into what it would be like if we were really gathering around the temple. He talked about what it would be like without restaurants, public bathrooms, and the fact that there would have been animals all around. It even talks in the scriptures about the people bringing their animals to sacrifice. (vs3)This was always just a minor detail to me. Yet as I was re-reading this passage this morning, it hit me. What was I going to sacrifice after conference? I'm not talking animals, or kids here, I am talking about sins. What is it that I am willing to place on the alter? Neal A. Maxwell taught, "
  • "The submission of one’s will is really the only uniquely personal thing we have to place on God’s altar. The many other things we 'give,' brothers and sisters, are actually the things He has already given or loaned to us. However, when you and I finally submit ourselves, by letting our individual wills be swallowed up in God’s will, then we are really giving something to Him! It is the only possession which is truly ours to give!"
“Swallowed Up in the Will of the Father,” Ensign, Nov. 1995
The story also talks about how the people couldn't all hear the word, so they got it in written form.(vs. 8) I loved this, because if you are like me--there were times I could not hear the message. I tried my hardest to pay attention even among 4 little kids, a teenager and a husband. Yet, even if I could have heard everything, there was only so much I could absorb the first time. I am excited to study the talks a lot closer. Thinking upon this, I came across this post at one of my new favorite blogs, Diapers and Divinity.  She mentions that there are the same number of talks as there are weeks until the next General Conference. Coincidence? Let's just say this makes it a lot easier to stay on task. 

Another similarity is that after they heard the words of the prophet, they "rejoiced with great joy!" (Mosiah 5:4)During conference I felt so happy. I even wrote in my notes that I always wanted to feel this way. They  had no more disposition to do evil, but wanted to do good continually. (vs 2)

So how do we do that? How do we really incorporate the truths we have learned, and make them part of our lives? King Benjamin's followers repented, and changed. I had several impressions of things that I needed to change. 

These are personal commandments for me. I hope to be like King Benjamin said, " Therefore, I would that ye should be steadfast and immovable, always abounding in agood works, that Christ, the bLord God Omnipotent, may cseal you his, that you may be brought to heaven, that ye may have everlasting salvation and eternal life, through the wisdom, and power, and justice, and mercy of him whodcreated all things, in heaven and in earth, who is God above all. Amen." (Mosiah 5:15)

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