Friday, February 5, 2016

Why The Church of Jesus Christ Of Latter-Day Saints Build Temples ~

The Kirtland Temple was the first temple built in the Early Days of the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  A short history of this temple can be found here. 
 Due to persecution the Saints left Ohio and moved to Missouri and short time later they were again fleeing from Missouri where they settled in Nauvoo, Illinois. There they build the Nauvoo Temple. They were again expelled from the state and a short time later they started west where they hope to worship their God in peace.  
The Nauvoo Illinois Temple was rebuilt and dedicated in 2002 and you can read about the history of this temple here.

This is the temple where my husband and I were married and sealed for Eternity~

The First Temple to be started after the Saints came west following their expulsion from Nauvoo, Illinois was the Salt Lake Temple. It took the Saints 40 years to build this beautiful temple. You can learn about the History of the Salt Lake Temple Here and Here.
Why does the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints Build Temples? I have had this question asked of me many times through the years. 

The Church of Jesus Christ Of Latter-Day Saints have built beautiful temples throughout the world to do sacred ordinances for the living and the dead. We will soon be dedicating our 150th temple at the Provo City Center Temple in March. 
Here are a few thoughts on why we build these lovely temples.
"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. 
Throughout history, the Lord has commanded His people to build temples. Here are pictures of two of these ancient temples.

Today the Church is heeding the Lord's call to build temples all over the world, making temple blessings more available for a great number of our Heavenly Father's children. 
The principal purpose of temples is to provide the ordinances necessary for our exaltation in the celestial kingdom. Temple ordinances lead to the greatest blessings available through the Atonement of Jesus Christ. All we do in the Church - our meetings and activities, our missionary efforts, the lessons we teach and the hymns we sing-should point us to the Savior and the work we do in Holy Temples.  
When we first go to the temple we receive the temple endowment. We receive instructions and we make covenants to live righteously. 
Another temple ordinance is Celestial Marriage. We believe that in the temple we can be sealed as husband and wife forever if we are faithful to the covenants that we make. 
The children that come into our families are born under that covenant or if adopted a can be sealed to their parents in the temple. 
People who have died without essential gospel ordinances may receive those ordinances through the work done in temples." ( True To The Faith; A Gospel Reference; pg.170-171). 
"Temple work is the evidence that God has extended to every individual who has ever lived upon the earth, and who will ever be born into this mortal experience, the blessings and opportunities of salvation , immortality, and eternal life. The Lord's holy house is a place of peace, safety, and love. It is a place where the Spirit resides. It is a place of instruction in the ways of the Lord. It is a place of sacred covenants that open the gateway to the presence of the Father and the Son in the everlasting eternities." ( Essential Gospel Teachings by Richard J. Allen;  pg. 355.).
.....There is no greater work than helping people come unto Christ. This is our work and our glory ; to help Heavenly Father in bringing to pass His eternal plan of happiness - the immortality and eternal life of His children. Family history and temple work is the culmination of His plan. For the Lord has said: "This is eternal lives - to know the only wise and true God, and Jesus Christ, whom he hath sent. I am He. Receive ye, therefore, My law" (D&C 132:24.). ( Essentials Gospel Teachings by Richard J. Allen; pg. 356.). 
My eternal companion and I have served in two temples as temple ordinance workers for a total of 13 years.  This has been one of the sweetest and most sacred experiences we have had as a couple.  Here are the photos of those two temples; the Spokane Washington Temple and The Jordan River Temple. 
All of the Temples that we worship in and the Chapels that we meet in through out the world are paid from Tithing funds. Tithing funds also pay for other things. There are no paid clergy in our church. All assignments and callings are non paid positions of service. 
Hope you all enjoyed learning a little bit more about why we build temples. 

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Happy 70th Birthday To My Amazing Husband, Roger~

     Wishing my awesome husband Roger a very Happy Birthday Celebration. He turns 70 today and I consider that a milestone; a big one. I have been waiting patiently for my dear husband to be my same age. He is a baby boomer, I missed this popular age by 2 months. Since we are both 70 years old now; we are considered Elderly. I like the term older people better. I seriously can't figure out how we became old. We think and act pretty much the same as when we were young; but just a bit slower. Well, perhaps quite a bit slower. 
     I feel so blessed to be this very good man's wife for eternity. We met in High School and dated. He left on a mission for our church to Northern California and I waited for him while I finished Nursing School. He came home, we got engaged; 2 weeks later and married within 2 months. He graduated from Pharmacy School. We have lived in the following states, Utah, California, Nevada, Washington and now back to our roots in Utah. We have had 6 children, three boys and then three girls. We now have 32 grandchildren and 4 great grandchildren. It doesn't get better than that.
I am married to an extremely wonderful man. Roger is kind, considerate, very intelligent, wise, a hard worker, the best of fathers, my best friend and most of all a devoted disciple of Christ. He has had some life threatening illnesses through the years but has always gone through them with grace and with great  faith. We have had our ups and downs as we all do; but together we have weathered the storms of life and will continue to do so. 
We are committed to our faith. We love our Savior Jesus Christ with all our heart. We know we have a loving Heavenly Father who loves us and all of His Children. We have loved serving in the our church through the years in various assignments. We have especially loved serving in the temple. We are now fulfilling a dream of serving our Heavenly Father and Savior on a full time mission for The Church Of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. We are serving in the Utah Salt Lake South Mission as Member Leadership Support Missionaries. 

Since starting our mission three months ago, we have grown even closer than ever. We are enjoying studying the scriptures and other assigned reading together. We are having a sweet time visiting with various individuals and families that are less active in our church but have some interest in returning  and or do not know anything about our church. We have had many very spiritual moments thus far on our mission.  Our missionary purpose is to invite others unto Christ. I am so grateful to stand by this loving man of mine in doing this work. 
Today is a very special day because my King was born on this day and I am so thankful to be his Queen forever. 

Happy Birthday To My Wondrous Husband Roger ~
I love you so much and you are and will always be at the center of my Eternity! 

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Our Visit To The Provo City Center Temple~

We attended the  Provo City Center Temple Open house today with our dear friend's Steve and Debbie. We enjoyed the tour and are very excited for the dedication in March of this magnificent building. There is a intriguing  story behind this temple. 
On Dec. 17th 2010 in the early morning a fire engulfed the Provo Tabernacle. The firemen fought this fire for hours until all that was left was just the outside shell. It was all in rubble. It took months before they learned the cause of the fire and a year before new plans for this historic building were announced. 

 Here is the history behind this burned down tabernacle. 
This Provo meeting house was constructed starting in 1856 and completed in 1867~
Due to the need for a larger building to accommodate the needs of the saints in Provo the meeting house was taken down and the tabernacle was started in 1882 and completed 16 years later. It stood as a landmark building for over 100 years. 
During the October 2011 General Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints our Prophet, President Thomas S. Monson, announced that the Provo Tabernacle walls would be preserved and the building would be rebuilt to become a holy temple. 
 Here are some photos of this beautiful new temple exterior and interior. 
 Here is a photo take recently of the front of the temple~
This is an exquisite fountain in the front of the temple~
 The Celestial Room of the temple~
  The Bride's room~use for new brides and those going through for the first time~
 Here is one of the sealing rooms of this spectacular temple~
The Provo City Temple grounds~
This beautiful edifice will serve as a place where Latter-Day Saints can participate in sacred ordinances that will bless them and their ancestors. 
You can learn more about this special temple here. 
You can learn about why Mormon's build temples here
We had such an enjoyable day doing this tour and then having a wonderful lunch afterwards. It was truly a sacred experience and we felt the peaceful feelings of the spirit as we were able to walk through this lovely treasured building. 
The end of a perfect day~ 

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Our Special Christmas 2015 and New Year 2016 Moments~

The month of December and the first part of January have been busy but delightful moments. We have been very involved in missionary endeavors and also have had some sweet moments with family. 
Here is a photo of our missionary district. This was at the first of December and it is always an inspiring meeting. I am especially impressed with the Zone Leaders. These young men are 19-20 year olds and they conduct and run the meetings. The meetings are always inspiring and fun too. One of my favorite parts of the meeting is when we share miracles for the week. It is so incredible to see how the Lord is hastening his work and there are always miracles to share. 
Here is a photo of a few of our Christmas Decorations. I love everything about the Christmas season. I do love the decorations because they bring such a warmth to our home as we celebrate the Birth of our Savior Jesus Christ. 
Our Grandson Jacob and his wife Dana and their little Sagan our Great Grandson came over for a visit. We had a great evening with them. 
We did get some beautiful snow during the Christmas Holiday. I love to look at it but not necessarily be out in it. No snowball fights or snow angels for us this year.The snow was deep and we almost lost our dog Sammy in it. He actually doesn't want to go out at all but when you encourage him to go out; he likes to romp in it. 
Some of these pictures are from our Christmas morning. We loved watching Sammy get into his Christmas Sock. He really liked his new toy. One of my favorite gifts was a painting of the Savior that we first saw at the MTC. My husband got it for us. It is a picture of our dear Savior with tears in his eyes. I know that he sometimes weeps for us. The rest of the photos are from our Family Christmas Dinner that we had on the Sunday after Christmas. 
This is my oldest son Sean and his wife Mary with all of their children; plus my middle daughter Jenni and her husband Michael and their children. 
This is photos of our New Year's Eve Celebration with our Daughter Jenni and Michael and their children Alyssa, Emma and Benjamin. We rang in the new year with the children banging pots and pans. We had lots of goodies to eat and we watched the ball drop and then it was 2016. 
Here is pictures of our family on the Sunday after New Years. It was so awesome to have two families share some sweet moments with us for Christmas and New Years.
We feel so blessed this past year to have all of our children and their families healthy and doing well. 
We look forward to a New Year with more missionary experiences and a few moments of family fun. We are so grateful for our Savior Jesus Christ and continue to worship his birth, life, atonement and resurrection. We know that through Christ, Families Can Be Forever. We are spreading the good news of the Gospel of Jesus Christ that know Him not. We are very thankful to have this unique and special calling as Senior Missionaries.  

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

The Value Of Keeping A Journal~

As the year of 2015 ended and the New Year of 2016 came in; I realized how grateful I am that I have kept a journal for almost 40 years. I have written about many different events in my life, family times, sacred moments, and day to day activities. I have also written about the events in our World, the United States and our Church.
 Looking back on writing in a journal, I have realized that it was very therapeutic for me. During difficult times I would record my struggles and then in a month or two I would see that I had grown through those trials. Writing about the things that I am grateful for permeate my journal entries. This has helped me have a positive attitude towards life. I have had so many sweet spiritual experiences that I have recorded that I am grateful for. My children through the years have called and asked for dates of various events that they know that I have recorded. I have also shared with my grandchildren a few of my recorded observations about life on my blog entitled: Grandpa and Grandma's Twitterings.
I have had the special opportunity to write my Parent's histories and my Aunts. I felt so blessed to have the time to do this great work. I learned so much about my parents and my aunt that I would not have known if I hadn't undertaken those projects. 
 I plan at some point to do my own history and that of my husbands. I want our lives to be shared because we have had such rich blessings through the years and special life changing moments. The minutes of our lives as recorded in journals will be the basis for our histories. 
My testimony of The Gospel of Jesus Christ is weaved throughout my journals. I know that I have a purpose on this earth. I know where I came from, why I am here and where I am going. You will find in my journals those answers to life questions and my testimony of Jesus Christ, The Book of Mormon,The Restoration of the Gospel. The Prophet Joseph Smith and Living Prophets for our day.

 This past year when working in Family History on;  I have discovered the histories of several of my ancestors. Some of those histories were taken from my ancestors journals. I now know them more intimately  and I appreciate their lives and the sacrifices that they made for the Gospel of Jesus Christ. My testimony has grown from getting to know those ancestors of mine. Their stories give me courage to go on when times are difficult. I can truly say that if my Grandmother Peterson Ogden can do it I can do it. 
I feel that we should share our life stories with our families. I can testify that it does help pull the generations together in a unique way. 
In doing journals you can do it in so many different ways. I have tried various ones. The traditional journal is the one that I am doing right now. This is a handwritten one. However, I have had years when I have typed them, put them on the computer, used an on-line format and had a blog journal. Since starting our mission both my husband and I decided to go back to a hand written journal. We have had many wonderful experiences in the 2 plus months we have been serving that I am already on my third journal. 
I love the thoughts expressed in this following message by Lloyd D. Newell the narrator for The Mormon Tabernacle Choir's Music and The Spoken Word. 
"Some call it journaling. Others call it expressive writing or creating a personal mission statement. Whatever it’s called, something happens when we take time to seriously ponder our life and then write about who we are, what direction we want our life to take—what our goals and aspirations are for the future. Studies have shown that writing about our personal experiences can improve our mood and even our physical health. 
But perhaps one of the greatest benefits of writing about our lives is expressed in this statement attributed to author Bernard de Voto: “The best reason for putting anything down on paper is that one may then change it.” Writing our personal story not only helps us understand that story better, it can also impel us to make the story better. After all, as any good English teacher will tell you, the most important part of the writing process is rewriting.
For example, married couples who wrote about a conflict in their marriage were able to better identify what they could do to make positive changes and strengthen their relationship. Similarly, struggling college students who were invited to write an essay or make a video to explain the rigors of college life to future students ended up with better grades the next semester than those who did not take part in documenting their experiences. Examples like these have led researchers to conclude that “by writing and then editing our own stories, we can change our perceptions of ourselves and identify obstacles that stand in the way of better health.”
Nobody’s book of life is quite ready for publication yet. We’re all rough drafts for now. The process of writing and revising our life story, one that is authentic and real, gives us a chance to reframe the past even as we look forward to a brighter future. 

I would challenge everyone to keep a journal; it will bless your lives in so many different ways! Let the year of 2016 be full of your life experiences through journal keeping.  

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Wishing Blessings For All - Happy New Year 2016~

As this lovely Christmas Season comes to an end for 2015 and we ring in the New Year of 2016; I thought I would share a great message by President Dieter F. Uchtodorf of the 1st Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints entitled; "Finish With Your Torch Still Lit".
 In ancient Greece, runners competed in a relay race called a lampadedromia.1 In the race, runners held a torch in their hand and passed it on to the next runner until the final member of the team crossed the finish line.
The prize wasn’t awarded to the team that ran fastest—it was awarded to the first team to reach the finish line with its torch still lit.
There is a profound lesson here, one taught by prophets ancient and modern: while it is important to start the race, it is even more important that we finish with our torch still lit.
Solomon Started Strong
The great King Solomon is an example of someone who started strong. When he was young, he “loved the Lord, walking in the statutes of David his father” (1 Kings 3:3). God was pleased with him and said, “Ask what I shall give thee” (1 Kings 3:5).
Instead of asking for riches or a long life, Solomon asked for “an understanding heart to judge thy people, that I may discern between good and bad” (1 Kings 3:9).
This pleased the Lord so much that He blessed Solomon not only with wisdom but also with wealth beyond measure and a long life.
Though Solomon was indeed very wise and did many great things, he did not finish strong. Sadly, later in his life, “Solomon did evil in the sight of the Lord, and went not fully after the Lord” (1 Kings 11:6).
Finishing Our Own Race
How many times have we started something and not finished? Diets? Exercise programs? Commitments to read the scriptures daily? Decisions to be better disciples of Jesus Christ?
How often do we make resolutions in January and pursue them with red-hot determination for a few days, a few weeks, or even a few months only to find that by October, the flame of our commitment is little more than cold ash?
One day I ran across a funny picture of a dog lying next to a piece of paper he had shredded. It read, “Certificate of Dog-Obedience Training.”
We are like that sometimes.
We have good intentions; we start strong; we want to be our best self. But in the end we leave our resolutions shredded, discarded, and forgotten.
It’s human nature to stumble, fail, and sometimes want to drop out of the race. But as disciples of Jesus Christ, we have committed not only to begin the race but also to finish it—and finish it with our torch still burning brightly. The Savior promised His disciples, “He that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved” (Matthew 24:13).
Let me paraphrase what the Savior has promised in our day: If we keep His commandments and finish with our torch still lit, we will have eternal life, which is the greatest of all the gifts of God (see D&C 14:7; see also2 Nephi 31:20).
The Light That Never Dies
Sometimes after stumbling, failing, or even giving up, we get discouraged and believe our light has gone out and our race is lost. But I testify that the Light of Christ cannot be extinguished. It shines in the darkest night and will relight our hearts if only we incline our hearts to Him (see 1 Kings 8:58).
No matter how often or how far we fall, the Light of Christ ever burns brightly. And even in the deepest night, if we but step toward Him, His light will consume the shadows and reignite our souls.
This race of discipleship is not a sprint; it’s a marathon. And it makes little difference how fast we go. In fact, the only way we can lose the race is by finally giving in or giving up.
As long as we continue to rise up and move toward our Savior, we win the race with our torches burning brightly.
For the torch is not about us or about what we do.
It is about the Savior of the world.
And that is a Light that can never be dimmed. It is a Light that swallows the darkness, heals our wounds, and blazes even in the midst of the deepest sorrow and unfathomable darkness.
It is a Light that surpasses understanding.
May each of us finish the path we have begun. And with the help of our Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ, we will finish joyfully and with our torches still lit.
Where are you on your race of life? Are your torches burning brightly? The Light of Christ is “a Light that swallows the darkness, heals our wounds, and blazes even in the midst of the deepest sorrow and unfathomable darkness.” (Ensign, Oct. 2015, pg.4-5).
From my own life experiences I know that Jesus Christ is the way, the truth and the light. I know that He has healed my wounds and provided the light to find my own way in my moments of darkness. I invite you to Come Follow Him. 

Monday, December 21, 2015

Merry Christmas To Each Of You From Us~

With Our New Mission Assignment, I have not had a moment to get cards sent out. So this is our Christmas message for this year. We really feel blessed to have so many awesome friends and family. We are grateful for the many ways you have touched our hearts through the year. We consider ourselves deeply blessed by you all. Here is a snapshot of this moment in time. 

Roger retired in September and through a special spiritual experience; we decided to put in papers for a Full time Member Leadership Support Mission in our Area. We received our mission call on Conference weekend. We are assigned to the Utah Salt Lake South Mission. We entered the MTC on Oct. 26th and were there for a week. We had a great experience and came home ready to start the work. 

Here is a photo of our Mission, District and the Elders that we work with. 
We are enjoying our time with them all. 

With Children, Grandchildren, and Great Grandchildren spread far and wide, we’re resigned to a long distance celebration of Christmas this year.  Rather than a narrative detailing this memorable and event-filled year, just know that all is well as we place ourselves in the care and keeping of our Savior.  We express a sincere Seasons Greeting with Christmas wishes of joy for each of you. More than ever before, we recognize sweet blessings and feel the need to express gratitude to our Savior for His hand in our lives, and for countless tender mercies.
His Life and Atonement are central to our gratitude for they are the greatest of all gifts received. Believe that He lives and gives light to the world. That light illuminates the path to eternal life with Him, if we’ll receive Him it in our hearts and follow in his steps.
Thank you for who you are and for the Christ-like examples you set for each of us.
Sending our Christmas greeting and our love and hugs!
 Roger and LeAnn Williams Family

I want to share this very precious song with you all; enjoy!


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