As soon as you visit this blog, you see an image of the Salt Lake LDS Temple. If you are not LDS, you may be confused as to what our temples are used for.
Temples have been an important part of worship since Biblical times. In the first chapter of Luke, we see that during a visit to the temple, Zacharias was visited by an angel.
9 According to the custom of the priest’s office, his lot was to burn incense when he went into the temple of the Lord.
10 And the whole multitude of the people were praying without at the time of incense.
11 And there appeared unto him an angel of the Lord standing on the right side of the altar of incense.
While he was in the temple, he learned that his wife, Elizabeth, who was barren, would conceive a child who would be “great in the sight of the Lord” (Luke 1:15).
This was a miracle, made possible by their faith in God and adherence to his commandments. It is no coincidence that Zacharias was given this vision in the temple. Latter-Day Saints also seek answers from God in temples today. The temple provides a peaceful place, a refuge from a hectic world. Inside, church members make sacred covenants with the Lord. Many visit the temple in order to receive an answer to prayer.
In these modern times, we are also able to receive revelation from the Lord pertaining to our own lives. God gave answers to those in Biblical times and His hand is not gone from us today. Even with all the turmoil in the world, Heavenly Father loves us and cares about our personal struggles. It is imperative, however, that we seek out the Lord in prayer and dedicate time to building a relationship with Him.
In the first chapter of Mark, Christ goes out on His own to seek His Father in prayer.
35 And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed.
This was at a time in Christ’s life when “his fame spread abroad throughout all the region round about Galilee” and “all the city was gathered together at the door” (Mark 1:28 & 33). Christ performed numerous miracles and had many followers. He was sought out by many, and yet He still took the time to speak with the Lord. It is worth noting that in this verse, it is specified that He went out alone to pray. Christ is our ultimate example. If the Son of God took the time to pray in secret, even at the height of his ministry, how much would it help us in our own lives if we were to do the same?
It’s important to remember that we are children of a God who loves us. He sees far beyond what we can in our mortality. He knows what is best for us. Although it can be hard to understand trials when they arise, it’s comforting to exercise faith in His plan and timing. When we pray to Him, it helps to remember that we are speaking to our Father in heaven, who is a living entity. We can speak with Him and build a relationship with Him just as we would with our loved ones here on earth. In addition to thanking Him and asking for what we need, we can and should simply tell Him about our lives. He cares about our thoughts and feelings and what’s important to us. Although God is all-knowing, it strengthens our relationship with Him if we earnestly and genuinely speak to Him as a loving Father.
Through prayer and visits to the temple, we can build a personal relationship with our Heavenly Father and receive revelation from Him. He loves and cares about each of us and desires to be close to us.