Many LDS young adults are preparing to enter the temple for the first time—to prepare for their own marriage or a mission or to spiritually progress by making covenants. Whatever your reasons may be, entering the temple is a wonderful step in the right direction, but it does take some preparation ahead of time to get in the right mindset to make covenants with the Lord and to gain the most from your experiences there.
The Lord’s people have built temples for centuries as places to worship, progress, make new covenants for themselves and for those who have passed on, and be close to the Spirit.
While you do make covenants for yourself and others in the temple, it is also a wonderful place to feel closeness with the Spirit and gain revelation and comfort for your life.
Once you have made covenants for yourself in the temple, you will wear a symbolic reminder of those promises with God. These reminders are called garments. They are sacred clothing worn underneath the regular clothing of “endowed” or temple-going LDS members. Recently, this informative video was created to explain the significance of these symbols of our faith:
Here are a few stories of how LDS young adults have prepared to enter the temple to make sacred covenants with God:
I received my endowment in the temple earlier this year, on my 23rd birthday. I enjoyed the experience then, and I love going back still. Because it was the right time for me to receive that ordinance and because I was fully prepared, I felt peaceful before, during, and after that important spiritual step. I prepared by attending the temple often, talking with family and friends, praying, and studying the scriptures.
Attend the Temple Often
In the year before I received my endowment, I made space in my schedule to regularly participate in baptisms for the dead at the Salt Lake Temple. Being in the house of the Lord so often made me familiar with the way things run there. I also became familiar with the peaceful feelings of the Spirit that anyone can feel within those walls. By the time I received my endowment, being at the temple felt like being at home. Attend the temple as often as you can. Make it a permanent part of your life now, and every future visit will be more enjoyable than the last.
Talk with Family and Friends You Trust
I am grateful to have had wise and righteous loved ones to talk to about the endowment ordinance before I received it for myself. They testified of the truth and goodness that is given to us in the temple. They taught me what to expect and what to listen for. They made me truly excited to take that step closer to Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. If you don’t have friends and family to talk to about the temple, remember that your bishop knows all about it and is willing to help you prepare. Ask him if someone in your ward teaches a temple preparation class, which is another wonderful way to learn what to expect.
Pray and Study the Scriptures
Perhaps the most crucial preparation I made for receiving my endowment was strengthening my relationship with the Lord and my understanding of His ways. Pray for guidance, clarity, and peace as you prepare for the temple. Search the scriptures for teachings that relate to the temple ordinances and covenants. This too will make everything in the endowment session more familiar and beautiful to you. Above all, remember that the temple is full of truth and light that your Heavenly Father wants you to have. Prepare for it, enjoy it, and go back often.
As I started to prepare to enter the temple and receive my endowment, Satan started to work on me. I started to feel unworthy because of my imperfections and weaknesses. As I continued to study and prepare, I came to the realization that God does not expect perfection. Yes, you need to be temple worthy, but you do not need to be perfect. Perfection is a process that goes beyond this life. I am not the perfect friend, and I don’t have my life completely figured out. Sometimes I feel frustrated and insecure. That does not make me unworthy. In fact, that is probably when we need the temple most. The Lord wants you there! He will help and bless you in your efforts to get there.
As I prepared, my relationship with the Savior was strengthened. The Lord is merciful and loves us more than we can comprehend. Because of this, He offered Himself as a sacrifice so that we might overcome sins and trials and be perfected and exalted.
The temple is an integral part of that process. I love the quote by President Thomas S. Monson that says, “As we go to the holy house, as we remember the covenants we make therein, we will be able to bear every trial and overcome each temptation. The temple provides purpose for our lives. It brings peace to our souls.”
There are amazing promises and blessings that come from attending the temple. As I studied those, I became even more excited about receiving my endowment and taking the next step in my spiritual progression. President Russell M. Nelson tells us that “covenants do not hold us down; they elevate us beyond the limits of our own power and perspective.”
Preparing to enter the temple was an amazing experience, and attending the temple since then has brought tremendous blessings in my life. I testify of the Savior’s love and mercy and of the blessings that come from the temple.