With Valentine’s Day coming up I am reminded of my wedding which took place 33 years ago on Valentine’s Day at the Salt Lake City Temple. This has been the wisest choice I have ever made. Why is it the wisest choice? Because now 33 years later I can rest assure that my husband and I will be together again.
Eight years ago on New Year’s Eve, my “eternal” companion of 25 years passed away in his sleep at 50 years old. It was a peaceful passing but a big surprise. We had built our life together with nine children and a house in southern Alabama. Though he is absent, I know because of the power of the priesthood which sealed us together all those years ago that I will be with him again after I have passed on to the next life.
There is great comfort when families are sealed together for eternity. Children will be with their parents and husbands will be with their wives. All through the ages, families were separated by death but with this temple experience, they will once again be reunited. This has brought great peace for those who have lost loved ones so close to them.
Temple worship is not a new experience. From the Old Testament, the Jews made temporary temples called Tabernacles which they could transport as they moved from place to place. (Exodus, chapters 25-27) This was done until Solomon built a temple for a more permanent structure and worship. This sacred place gives comfort and peace to all who attend.
Being sealed together in the temple means we understand the great plan of salvation: we lived with our Father in Heaven before we came to earth. We were taught that we would be born on earth without the memory of that life before as a test of our integrity. We would be free to choose the path we take. We can learn to develop our spiritual selves to know that Jesus is the Christ and He atoned for our sins. All of these teachings can bring peace to our souls and comfort to our times of tragedy.
Knowing we are sealed for forever also helps us when in times of conflict. We try a little harder, be a little more forgiving, and help each other a little more because it’s not just “til death do you part”. We can humble ourselves to be kinder to each other. Being sealed together means forever and requires more work than an easy ride down to divorce court. There are always extenuating circumstances which may require divorce but for the most part sealed couples can help each other get to heaven.
Which leads to a quote told by a family friend which helps him keep life in perspective: “Anyone who imagines that bliss [in marriage] is normal is going to waste a lot of time running around shouting that he has been robbed. Most putts don’t drop. Most beef is tough. Most children grow up to be just people. Most successful marriages require a high degree of mutual toleration. Most jobs are more often dull than otherwise…..” (Jenkins Lloyd Jones, Big Rock Candy Mountain, Deseret News, 12 June 1971, A4)
Heavenly Father loves us and wants us to be with our loved ones forever. The temple is the way possible for us to do this here on earth. Many times we are drawn to our family and for good reason. We fondly remember our grandparents and great uncles and aunts and want to be with them. Being sealed together is a blessing of mankind and will always go on forever.
Valerie Steimle has been writing as a family advocate for over 25 years. As a convert to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, she promotes Christian living in her writings and is the mother of nine children and grandmother to twelve. Mrs. Steimle authored six books and is a contributing writer to several online websites. To her, time is the most precious commodity we have and knows we should spend it wisely. To read more of Valerie's work, visit her at her website, The Blessings of Family Life.