Friday, October 1, 2010

Oct. Visiting Teaching Message

**The October 2010 Liahona and Ensign will be a special issue focusing entirely on temples. The issue will not contain a specific First Presidency Message or Visiting Teaching Message. Home and visiting teachers are encouraged to prayerfully select their message from the contents of this special issue.**

A Temple-Motivated People
By President Howard W. Hunter (1907–95)
Fourteenth President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

The temple is the great symbol of our membership

What a glorious thing it is for us to
have the privilege of going to the
temple for our own blessings. Then
after going to the temple for our own
blessings, what a glorious privilege to
do the work for those who have gone
on before us. This aspect of temple
work is an unselfish work. Yet whenever
we do temple work for other people,
there is a blessing that comes back
to us. Thus it should be no surprise to
us that the Lord does desire that His
people be a temple-motivated people.
It is the Lord Himself who, in His
revelations to us, has made the temple
the great symbol for members of the
Church. Think of the attitudes and
righteous behaviors that the Lord
pointed us toward in the counsel He
gave to the Kirtland Saints through the
Prophet Joseph Smith as they were preparing
to build a temple. This counsel
is still applicable:
“Organize yourselves; prepare
every needful thing; and establish a
house, even a house of prayer, a house
of fasting, a house of faith, a house of
learning, a house of glory, a house of
order, a house of God” (Doctrine and
Covenants 88:119). Are these attitudes
and behaviors indeed reflective of what
each of us desires and seeks to be?

All of our efforts in the Church lead to
the holy temple

All of our efforts in proclaiming the
gospel, perfecting the Saints, and
redeeming the dead lead to the holy
temple. This is because the temple
ordinances are absolutely crucial;
we cannot return to God’s presence
without them. Truly, the Lord desires
that His people be a temple-motivated people.
It would be the deepest desire of my
heart to have every member of the
Church be temple worthy. I would
hope that every adult member would
be worthy of—and carry—a current
temple recommend, even if proximity
to a temple does not allow immediate
or frequent use of it.

The temple is holy unto the Lord;
it should be holy unto us

Let us be a temple-attending and a
temple-loving people. Let us hasten to
the temple as frequently as time and
means and personal circumstances allow.
Let us go not only for our kindred
dead, but let us also go for the personal
blessing of temple worship, for the
sanctity and safety which is provided
within those hallowed and consecrated
walls. The temple is a place of beauty,
it is a place of revelation, it is a place of
peace. It is the house of the Lord.
It is holy unto the Lord.
It should be holy unto us.
Let us share with our children
the spiritual feelings we have in the
temple. And let us teach them more
earnestly and more comfortably the
things we can appropriately say about
the purposes of the house of the Lord.
Keep a picture of a temple in your
home that your children may see it.
Teach them about the purposes of the
house of the Lord. Have them plan
from their earliest years to go there and
to remain worthy of that blessing.

It is pleasing to the Lord when we go
worthily to the temple

It is pleasing to the Lord for our youth
to worthily go to the temple and
perform vicarious baptisms for those
who did not have the opportunity
to be baptized in life. It is pleasing
to the Lord when we worthily go to
the temple to personally make our
own covenants with Him and to be
sealed as couples and as families. And
it is pleasing to the Lord when we
worthily go to the temple to perform
these same saving ordinances for
those who have died, many of whom
eagerly await the completion of these
ordinances in their behalf.
To have the temple indeed be a
symbol unto us, we must desire it
to be so. We must live worthy to
enter the temple. We must keep the
commandments of our Lord. If we can
pattern our life after the Master, and
take His teaching and example as the
supreme pattern for our own, we will
not find it difficult to be temple worthy,
to be consistent and loyal in every walk
of life, for we will be committed to a
single, sacred standard of conduct and
belief. Whether at home or in the marketplace,
whether at school or long after
school is behind us, whether we are
acting totally alone or in concert with a
host of other people, our course will be
clear and our standards will be obvious.
The ability to stand by one’s principles,
to live with integrity and faith
according to one’s belief—that is what
matters. That devotion to true principle—
in our individual lives, in our
homes and families, and in all places
that we meet and influence other
people—that devotion is what God is
ultimately requesting of us. It requires
commitment—whole-souled, deeply
held, eternally cherished commitment
to the principles we know to be true
in the commandments God has given.
If we will be true and faithful to the
Lord’s principles, then we will always
be temple worthy, and the Lord and
His holy temples will be the great symbols
of our discipleship with Him.

Adapted from Ensign,
Oct. 1994, 2–5; Feb. 1995, 2–5

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