Special Place
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    “Special Place,” Friend, May 2002, 34–35

    Special Place

    Based on a true story

    Even them will I bring to my holy mountain, and make them joyful in my house of prayer (Isa. 56:7).

    Sara Marshall watched as Mommy brushed her hair and put on lipstick. Sara thought that Mommy was beautiful.

    Then Sara remembered that Mommy was going visiting teaching. That meant that Sara had to go to Sister Morgan’s house. Sara had just turned five. She could hardly wait until fall, when she would start kindergarten and go to school like her big brothers did. She wouldn’t need to go to a baby-sitter’s house then.

    “Why can’t I stay with Grandma and Grandpa Thomas?” she asked.

    Mommy gave Sara a hug. “Remember? Grandma and Grandpa are serving at the temple today.”

    Sara’s lips turned down into a pout. She didn’t want to go to Sister Morgan’s house. She wanted to stay with her grandparents, as she used to.

    Grandma Thomas often let Sara make cookies with her. Grandpa showed Sara his collection of toy trains.

    Ever since Grandma and Grandpa had started working at the Salt Lake Temple two months ago, they didn’t have as much time for her.

    She knew that the temple was a special place where people wore white clothes. Mommy and Daddy went there once a month. They called it their temple date. Sara thought that that sounded funny—Mommy and Daddy going on a date. Her big brother, Steven, took girls on dates. They went to the movies or basketball games. Sometimes he took a girl he really liked to dances.

    “Grandma and Grandpa love you just as much as they always have,” Mommy said. “But they promised the bishop and Heavenly Father that they would serve at the temple three days a week. What if you and I make cookies after I pick you up from Sister Morgan’s? We can make extra and take some to Grandma and Grandpa.”

    Sara’s frown disappeared. “Chocolate chip?”

    Mommy ruffled Sara’s hair. “Is there any other kind?”

    Sara enjoyed spending the morning at Sister Morgan’s. She played with Tiffany, who was also five. They played “Primary” and took turns being the teacher.

    That afternoon, Sara and Mommy made cookies, then took them to Grandpa and Grandma. They looked tired but happy.

    Grandma told her about helping a young bride go through the temple for the first time. Tears shone in Grandma’s eyes. “Doing temple work is one of the greatest joys in my life. Someday, maybe I can help you when you go to the Lord’s house.”

    Sara kissed them both and decided that she was glad they worked at the temple.

    Illustrated by Beth Whittaker