I cannot express the joy and happiness that is in my heart right now. I really feel like I am on the right path for my life. I have never felt so positive and happy and down right good about myself. I feel confident and beautiful and ready to take on the world. I know that these thoughts of joy and peace are directly related to the fact that I am taking this giant step in my eternal growth as a person, and cannot even begin to express my thanks and gratitude to my Heavenly Father. I also have to express my gratitude to my parents and siblings. Most especially my sister Haley. She has been a real rock to me since I moved to Utah and has really helped to me to realize the beauty in the temple. I have been in the process of making this decision for quite a while and I know that it is the right one. As she has already been through the temple, it is great to get advice and reassurance from her.
I just have to say how wonderful this weekend was. My good friend Tiffanee Rogers, who has just moved to Utah has been staying with me while she finds a job and a place to live. Yesterday, we drove up to Salt Lake, (I kept saying, 'lets drive up to the cities', which those of you from Rochester will find entertainment in) walked around Temple Square, and then went to dinner at the Gateway mall. We then walked back to Temple Square and sat outside the Temple as a newly wed couple came out. The looks on their faces were pricelessly beautiful. They looked so happy and so at peace. An even better site was when a family who had just been sealed walked through the doors. A couple with two small boys, all dressed in white, looked almost even more beautiful as they looked at each other with this glow of eternity in their faces. I know that sounds REALLY corny, but there is no other way to describe how the family looked. To know that they will all be sealed together, forever, makes me very excited for the day when I will be able to make those covenants with the person who chooses to fall in love with me. It was a beautiful day, to say the least.
After we watched the couples, Tiff and I went to the visitor's center and watched the movie, "Joy to the World". It really brought the real meaning of Christmas into my heart. It made me realize all that the Savior really stands for: peace, love, hope, forgiveness, charity and joy. It made me very happy to feel and understand the beautiful world that we live in. After this, we rushed to the Joseph Smith building where we watched the Joseph Smith movie. I have seen this movie before, but I just want to express right here, my testimony that he was a true prophet of God. That he did, indeed, see God the father and Jesus Christ. I really believe this. I believe that he restored the gospel on this earth, and that because of him, we have the fullness of truth today. I love this gospel and I am so grateful for it in my life. I can attribute everything I am to three sources, my parents, my loving friends (both Mormon and not), and the gospel of Jesus Christ.
I also was reminded of my favorite temple after watching the Joseph Smith movie, and that is the Nauvoo temple. I have always had a special place in my heart for the Nauvoo temple and this may be due to the fact that Nauvoo is the first place where I really felt like I gained my testimony of the church. When they decided to rebuild the temple, I remember feeling SOOO excited about it and thinking...that is where I want to get married. Everyone always wants to get married in Salt Lake, or wherever is most convenient to where their family is, but I have decided that, now that I am grown, Nauvoo is the place where I will be getting married. The temple is gorgeous and I just think it would be so simple and beautiful and exactly how I would want things to be.
I told my mom that when I get married, I just want everyone to camp at the state campground where we use to camp as a family on memorial weekend. She paused then started laughing. I said, 'Mom, why are you laughing? I am serious, I really want to get married there.' She said, 'I'm not laughing that you want to get married in Nauvoo, I'm laughing because we are not getting ready for your wedding day at the camp ground bathrooms...I'm sorry, but no.'
This is generally what the campground looks like when we camp...
....and this is generally how my mom looks/feels when we camp: amused, wet and cold...although her makeup and hair are always FLAWLESS.
All I have to say is, I feel so full of love right now. I feel like my heart might burst and spread this joy and happiness that I feel everywhere. Happy Christmas to everyone!