Yesterday I experienced a small glimpse of Heaven. Our stake has been planning for months to have the Columbia Temple be open and run only by our stake members on Memorial Day. What an amazing experience it was. I had been scheduled to work 10-10 but was able to switch to work 6p-330a so that I could go. Even though I had planned months ahead, the night before my friend had called to see if I wanted to ride down with her, but Satan and his tactics always try to get in the way. Let's just say he didn't get his way this time, even though he tried. Sunday night I left Nicks with the most amazing peace and comfort. As I drove home I kept thinking is this for real and as I went through the day yesterday I continued to have this same feeling of peace. So with 5 hours of sleep I went to the temple. I really thought I was going to have a difficult time keeping my eyes and ears open and my emotions under control, but I had no problem at all. I just kept thinking this must be what Heaven is like. Brother Johnson the High Councilman over temple work was standing outside the temple doors welcoming everyone in. At the front desk was a brother from my own ward. Every where I turned I saw people from my ward and stake that I knew. We had gotten there an hour early knowing that if we didn't we wouldn't get in the session and we were right. They filled the room to capacity with 62 people. Now that may not sound like a lot, but for that little temple it was packed.
Our Stake President was on the other side of the veil when I went through which was pretty neat. I imagine when we get to Heaven the voice on the other end will sound just as familiar. What an amazing experience that will be. The Celestial Room is always such a peaceful place for me. And again most all faces looked familiar. It was just like Heaven will be I'm sure. As I sat there I picked up the scriptures and turned to D&C 6 and read verses 19, 23, and 36, "Be patient; be sober; be temperate; have patience, faith, hope and charity...Did I not speak peace to your mind concerning the matter? What greater witness can you have than from God?...Look unto me in every thought; doubt not, fear not." Over the past week I have turned to this section several times to find peace. It has been an answer to my many prayers. And again as I sat and read it in the temple that same sweet peace was present and I could not doubt again the personal revelation that I have been blessed with over the past several months. Heavenly Father is in charge and when we let Him, He will create for us amazing experiences. As I made my way towards the exit, My friend Jared Blacker's wife (from Nampa who I grew up with and lives in Concord) came into the Celestial Room. As I was talking to her, Sister Larson the Patriarch's wife came up to talk to us, but just as she was approaching me a brother from my ward came over and whispered in my ear, "Always remember, you are a Diamond." I don't know what came over me, but it immediately brought tears to my eyes. He tells me this all the time, but for some reason it had more meaning and reassured to me that I am a daughter of Heavenly Father who loves me. It was fun to talk to these sweet ladies for a very short time.
Just as I was leaving the Celestial Room a lady who looked familiar to me came in. I had seen her several places in the temple, but couldn't put it together. I don't know her name. But it finally occured to me that I had met her once on Valentines day. We actually met at the bank. Nick had taken the tithing to the bank and the counselor in the bishopric had also been there. It was his wife who had come up to the car to introduce herself to me. She stopped me and out of the blue told me things that I really needed to hear. It was totally unexpected, but again was another tender mercy that Heavenly Father gave me. As I was waiting in the dressing room my friend Loren Belk was also in there. She said almost the same thing to me that the sister in the Celestial room said. It goes to show that Heavenly Father is in charge and sends messengers to be answers to our prayers. The interesting thing was that I ran into several sisters who were in Nicks ward and each one came up to me to tell me what a wonderful man he is. That he is. And that was all I could really say when they wanted more information from me.
On the way out of the temple I ran into Jared Blacker who had actually been in the session. He stopped me to give me his new phone number and said, I just feel better with you having it. It really is interesting how someone you grow up with can still make it feel like your little piece of Nampa is with you when you are together. I had seen him earlier in the week at a Stake Meeting and felt the same way.
I have a testimony of temple work, that families can be together forever, and that our ultimate goal is to make it back to our Heavenly Home knowing that we did our very best. Sometimes I stumble and fall. And sometimes I don't want to get back up again and keep going, but I eventually stand up, brush off, and keep going. That is what this life is about. How grateful I am for a loving Heavenly Father who knows my fears and hears my prayers and who loves me inspite of my weaknesses.