Friday evening I went to the temple with a friend. I had not gone in a long while, and I forgot the incredible peace I always feel there. I want to return soon to feel it again. But I don't have to wait until I attend the temple to feel that joy. There is another place where I can feel it every day: my home.
"Temples are literally houses of the Lord. They are holy places of worship where the Lord may visit. Only the home can compare with temples in sacredness" (True to the Faith, 170). "There exists a righteous unity between the temple and the home," Elder Stevenson reminded us in General Conference April 2009. "Understanding the eternal nature of the temple will draw you to your family; understanding the eternal nature of the family will draw you to the temple."
The purpose of the temple is to provide saving ordinances, all of which lead to the ultimate ordinance of uniting families. The home, the place of family growing and gathering, should be a tutorial for future temple attendance. The principles of salvation should "begin in sacred homes and continue in sacred temples."
King Benjamin's people showed us how: "And they pitched their tents round about the temple, every man having his tent with the door thereof towards the temple" (Mosiah 2:6). When we walk through the door out to the world, we should find a path to the temple. When we walk through the door into the home, we should feel as if we were entering the temple. Elder Stevenson advised us to evaluate our homes for these things:
"Recently, in a stake conference, all present were invited by . . . Elder Glen Jenson, an Area Seventy, to take a virtual tour of their homes using their spiritual eyes. I would like to invite each of you to do this also. . . . Imagine that you are opening your front door and walking inside your home. What do you see, and how do you feel? Is it a place of love, peace, and refuge from the world, as is the temple? Is it clean and orderly? As you walk through the rooms of your home, do you see uplifting images which include appropriate pictures of the temple and the Savior? Is your bedroom or sleeping area a place for personal prayer? Is your gathering area or kitchen a place where food is prepared and enjoyed together, allowing uplifting conversation and family time? Are scriptures found in a room where the family can study, pray, and learn together? Can you find your personal gospel study space? Does the music you hear or the entertainment you see, online or otherwise, offend the Spirit? Is the conversation uplifting and without contention? That concludes our tour. Perhaps you, as I, found a few spots that need some 'home improvement'—hopefully not an 'extreme home makeover.'"
To make improvements, Elder Stevenson suggested we make standards for our home, just as the Lord has made standards for the temple, and rely on D&C 88:19 for guidance.
We must not take this goal lightly. President Packer said, "Temple. One other word is equal in importance to a Latter-day Saint. Home. Put the words holy temple and home together, and you have described the house of the Lord!"
Sharing Time: What do you do to make your home like the temple?