Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Living in the Shadow of the Temple

Aloha everyone!

How. Are. YOU?? I’m sorry it’s been so long since I last sent an email for everyone! There’s no excuse for it really. My email time was cut a little short last week because we hiked this sweet mountain called “Crouching Lion”. It was as cool as the name sounds :D It’s a hike where you have to use both arms and legs and don’t have arms or legs by the end. So choice! I’m definitely taking you here when we come to visit.
So this email is story time for you all! So sit back, relax, grab a fluffernutter, and listen to what I had the opportunity of listening to/experiencing this week.

There was a man who came through the temple gates the other day and immediately after taking a step in, he stopped. He took a step back, being sure he was outside the temple gates. He paused, and then took a step back in, back onto the temple grounds. He did this over and over again; Taking a step in, and then out. In, out. After a few minutes, we asked this man what he was doing. His response gave me goose bumps. He said, “Whenever I take a step inside these gates, I feel something. When I step outside, I don’t feel anything.” This man knew there was something special about the temple. It was such a wonderful reminder to me.

We got to watch a fireside by Michael Ballum who is serving a mission with his wife and son here in Laie. It was only one of the most amazing firesides I’ve ever seen! He talked about temples and the history of them, and his experiences with them and it was just jaw dropping. I had no idea there was so much temple history and so many incredible stories behind them! And I wish I had all the time in the world to tell you every single story! Once I’m home, I’ll tell you all of them. But for now, I want to tell you a story-true story, about the Laie temple. 

During the world war, a bomber plane was sent to destroy this big white rectangular building in Hawaii. They didn’t know what it was, but they figured it was an equipment storage unit. They couldn’t risk keeping this beautiful building intact and so the day came to bomb it. The pilot flew over the building, ready to drop the first bomb, but the bomb wouldn’t release. He turned his plane around and dropped the bomb again. No luck. He tried one more time, surely he could do it this time…nothing. “Why won’t they drop?” The man wondered. “What am I doing wrong?” He decided to drop one of them into the ocean, just to see if there was something wrong with the plane. The second he flew over the ocean and released the bomb, it fell and dropped perfectly. No problem. This building was more than just a building.

Years later, a missionary was teaching a lesson to a man about the importance of temples and brought up this story. As this elder told the man this story, tears flowed down this man’s face. This man later told the elder that He himself had been the very pilot who had tried to bomb the Laie temple. It was him, whose plane could not drop one single bomb on the Laie Hawaii Temple. Because of this experience, he knew there was something special about this building, he later became baptized, and became a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. 

How incredible is that?? And that’s just ONE of the miracles he told us! Ah, I love temples so much. They are literally the Houses of God. A heaven on Earth. Inside the temple is the only place in the world where the adversary CANNOT dwell. And think about this, there are about 140 of those spots in the earth today! And growing! Tell me THAT’S not evidence that Heavenly Father loves us! =D The Lord’s work is progressing. And WE get to witness it! How lucky we are. 

I’m so grateful to serve in the Visitor’s Center of one of God’s temples. I literally live in the shadow of the temple. I’m so blessed. I hope we can all live our lives in the shadow of the temple. Perhaps not literally. But I hope we do everything we can so that we can go often. It is there where Heavenly Father can bless us! It is there that He can clothe us with power, so that we may and will endure the trials of this life. It’s a promise He has given us. Let Him fulfill that promise. I remember Mom telling me that we don’t go to the temple to get away from real life, but to experience real life. I’ve come to know that’s true. I know we all can come to know that’s true too.

I love you all! Have a wonderful Easter! Oh! I just forgot that I won’t talk to you 'til after Easter! Goodness me, well, have the best Easter ever family! Remember why we celebrate it as you eat eggfulls of yummy candy. Heavenly Father loves you!

Give 'em Heaven!

Love always,
Sister Annen

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