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I can’t remember the last time I felt the spirit so strongly.
I am so excited. My ward has been planning a trip to the temple to do baptisms for the youth and new converts. When I first heard about this, I was kind of leary about going yet. There are so many things that made me want to wait and I thought I was going to do just that. I even planned on working on the Saturday that was planned.
I believe that the hand of the Lord was influencing things today as I attended Church today. We made it just as church was beginning today. We were able to sit through and take sacrament together as a family. It was ward conference and there were sustainings and a message from our bishop.
The Bishop had a message about how we are not perfect, but if we are willing we can improve every day and also the importance of us sharing the gospel with everyone.
The new stake president (the man who asked me to speak in another ward last summer) also delivered an influencing message. How we should stop concentrating on the temporal things such as having that large home or car or watching TV and focus on our spiritual needs and how to put our Heavenly Father first.
We had a combined meeting for 2nd hour – and one of the stake councilors spoke about the importance of family and the plan of happiness / plan of salvation.
The third hour we had a combined priesthood meeting and we spoke about the needs of our significant others.
Before third hour, the brother that had baptized me approached me about going to the temple next Saturday. I thought I had already made up my mind and kindly told him I wasn’t going to. But then a feeling came over me that I should go anyway. After talking with him shortly I decided it was something I should do. Everything fell into place from here.
I was found by the Bishop’s secretary and had an appointment for after church for the temple recommend interview. I was beaming with joy at this point.
The whole day so far made me realize many things:
- How much I love my wife and children and how I want to be with them forever.
- The joy that comes from coming to church every week.
- This church has brought nothing but goodness to my life.
- This church is ABSOLUTELY the Church of Jesus Christ.
After third hour, I met up with my lovely family and asked them to wait while I talked to the Bishop.
It was a wonderful meeting, full of the spirit, I was bursting at the seams with joy. My interview went well, with the usual questions which are similar if not exactly what we are asked for our baptism interview or priesthood interviews.
There is one question that is different that came up and I was waiting for it. The Bishop asked me “Are you worthy to go to the temple?” This seems like a simple question but it is not. I realize that no unclean thing can be before the Lord, let alone enter his house. I had the feeling I should have just said yes, but with trying to be honest to myself and the Lord I said “…pretty much, 95% sure.” And why did I answer this way? Because I am not a perfect person. However, the Bishop again started to explain that part of being worthy is to be willing (note the keyword willing) to be obedient to the Lord. And I do believe I am.
“We are our own worst judge.” I said, and then I said that I am indeed worthy to enter the temple.
The Bishop also mentioned that he has noticed a change in my countenance and I was glad to hear that. I felt a change in the past few weeks. I felt a change because I’ve been doing what they always say:
- Keep the commandments.
- Study the scriptures daily.
- Have family home evening.
- Pray together as a family.
- Pray while alone.
I testify that these things make an absolute difference. I’ve tried to follow the advice before.
Trying was bringing change and happiness in my life.
Doing, however, has brought immense joy and peace.
Even though I said I was going to work on a Saturday, I have to say that I am not. To make up for it, I will work late on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Friday, I will rest and prepare to enter the temple and on the coming weekend I will dedicate it completely to spiritual things, which absolutely take importance above all temporal issues.
I am anticipating being dunk again. The feeling of being baptized is like none other. I was thinking since I was an Elder I could help by doing the baptisms, but I there is a policy that I have to be a member for a year and have a full temple recommend as well as being an Elder to do so. I am fine with that, I just want to help anyway that I can.
I am excited to enter the House of the Lord.
I came across an amazing video on YouTube tonight and thought I’d share it with everyone. The video depicts the growth of the Church as measured by Stakes. Stakes are made up of five to twelve congregations in a geographic area.
There are over 27,000 congregations consisting of almost 13,000,000 (million!) members. Every day at least one convert baptism takes place thanks to the help of over 53,000 missionaries.
As you watch this video, think of how fast the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is growing and what qualities and attributes a Church would have to have in order to be accepted by so many people in less than 180 years on this Earth.
…the only true and living church upon the face of the whole earth… (D&C 1:30)
LDS Stake Growth 1830-2004