The Temple and Thanksgiving – Doctrine and Covenants 97:13

You may think that I’m kind of dumb, but I have to admit that there’s a connection between the temple and thanksgiving that I’ve never been mindful of.

Recently, I came across several scriptures that were about thanksgiving. As I was reading, I realized that they all had the temple (it’s construction especially) in common. Finally, I came across the following:

“12 Behold, this is the tithing and the sacrifice which I, the Lord, require at their hands, that there may be a house built unto me for the salvation of Zion—

13 For a place of thanksgiving for all saints, and for a place of instruction for all those who are called to the work of the ministry in all their several callings and offices;” – Doctrine and Covenants 97:12-13

In this scripture, Joseph Smith is being taught, directly by the Lord, that the temple is a place of thanksgiving for all saints.

Have you ever realized that before? I hadn’t. (And I’m not assuming that you haven’t just because I haven’t…) I loved that connection. I loved realizing that the temple is a sacred place that is for thanksgiving.

I also have realized that I’ve never gone to the temple for that specific purpose. I’ve gone to the temple to be directed, to be comforted, to be instructed. I’ve gone to the temple to receive, but never to give – and especially to give thanks to God.

It seems so obvious, that the temple would be a place of thanksgiving. We are receiving salvation and instruction. The Lord is blessing us with His power and priesthood. How else could we respond?

So…now…I’m going to be sure to go to the temple with a heart full of thanks.

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4 Comments

  1. Kimberly

     /  March 2, 2011

    Living in Utah I didn’t go to the temple with that spirit of Thanksgiving, but then we moved and our temple was 4 hours away until last year when they built one in our area. That change from 4 hours (which we could never do) to 40 minutes away has made me SO grateful for the temple. Now whenever I go I have that spirit of Thanksgiving with me even if I’m going for other reasons as well.

    Reply
    • That is a great example, and it is true. My temple is about 4 hours away, too (one way). Maybe that is why I’m finally noticing this connection!

      Reply
  2. It is funny but I have had the exact opposite reaction living far away from the temple. I have felt more of the duty and need to go to the temple for direction and blessings then thanksgiving. Which is of course sad. I guess it was just easier for me to be more grateful and less selfish/needy when I could get there more often. I have thought about this recently and even now when I feel I really need to go, I think, I need to go, and it is such a struggle to get there and get someone to watch the kids and pay all the tolls, but I should be grateful, but I just am not able to feel it at the end. I enjoy the trip, but it still is all about my needs and getting something instead of giving something. No matter how hard I try.

    Reply
    • you know – I think I understand what you’re saying. Now that I live really far from the temple, I realize that I should have been more grateful when I lived near the temple.

      Even when I lived close to the temple, I made efforts to go often, but I don’t think that I had a heart full of gratitude.

      I think that I’m also struck by the idea that there is a connection between salvation of the souls of Zion, Thanksgiving, and Instruction – and this connection is all happening through the blessing of the temple. I guess it’s like – anytime I learn something about the temple, I realize that it is so much more important, so much bigger than ever give it credit.

      Oh – and I don’t think that you’re being selfish/needy when you go to the temple looking to learn or finding solutions to your life – that’s the whole point of the temple! It is a struggle to get there, that’s for sure, and I think that there are different times in our lives – sometimes we need to ask for more, other times we can give.

      Reply

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