LDS folks: It’s ok if you don’t get married in The Temple


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Whoa what am I saying? It’s ok that you don’t get married in the temple? Ya, it’s ok. Life isn’t over yet.

In fact if you want, you can get sealed in the temple the following year. It’s really not that bad. In fact, it’s great! Marriage is a wonderful thing. Two people fell in love and want to spend their lives together.

I want my kids to be married and sealed in the temple..but I want it done right. I want them to want it for themselves. I want them to understand that they are about to make sacred covenants with the Lord and that is a wonderful thing, if done right. I want my kids to be sealed to their families for all time and eternity, but if they need to get married civilly then get married in the temple the following year, I will still be one proud mama. I won’t judge them for it. I’ll admire their courage and strength of getting to the Temple. So don’t worry, you won’t get judgement from me.

Why am I talkin about this? Two reasons really.

One is I feel like Mormon kids are feeling so much excitement and pressure (good pressure!) to get married in the temple that they may feel like lying about worthiness is better than getting married outside the temple and waiting a year.

My second concern is that when kids are brave and honest and choose not to get married in the temple, they feel judged and other people say rude things to them about it. (Which may lead to pushing them further away from eventually getting sealed in the temple)

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1st concern: The temple is a very sacred and holy place. The temple has a high standard that is let’s be honest, VERY hard to meet sometimes as a young engaged couple. (hardest thing ever) If you are in love and are a normal human being you probably have sexual urges that are difficult to control. It is possible to control them. It takes work and it’s so wonderful when you make it to the temple and then it’s like a piece of cake from there! But sometimes we mess up. Sometimes we make mistakes because every person does and we aren’t worthy at this time to get married in the temple. (THAT’S OK!!) The amazing thing about temples these days is that they are stationary. They aren’t goin anywhere. They will be there in one year. If you truly want to be married in the temple you will stay true to the church and make it there in a year. That occasion is just as wonderful and reason to celebrate had it been a year sooner. The point isn’t how we get to our destination, it’s just that we get there. (It’s really not an end either, just another step) The more family, friends, and LDS community support, the more likely it is that awesome couple will get there! Yes it takes work but what good thing doesn’t? So there is no need to enter the temple if you aren’t worthy. It is ok to be unworthy at times. It is ok to admit we made a mistake. Yes it is hard to talk to the Bishop and tell him. Yes it is hard to tell family and if needed, friends. But I know God is happy that you are honest. I know that is the right thing to do, and that’s what God wants. He would much rather you wait a year then go through the temple on a lie. I promise. Be brave, tell the truth. Let God stand by you in hard times. Make it to the temple in a year and go regularly afterwards with your spouse.

Part B. of concern 1: Couples may not have the testimony to be married in the temple. This worries me a lot. Some of us can cruise through our LDS lives and never really know for sure if The Church is true. That’s fine but the temple is not something to just half heartedly enter. It’s a lot to take in. There are sacred covenants you make and covenants are incredibly important, more important then we understand. Once you become endowed you are held to a higher standard. Are you ready for that? Not all of us are! Sometimes if we do something of that magnitude it kicks us into gear, it’s just what we needed. That’s why prayer is so important. I don’t want to tell you go to the temple or not to. That is between you and the Lord. But don’t plan on tricking the Lord and go in only to plan on never going back.. that is not good for anyone.

It’s ok not feel 100% ready. I don’t want to stray you from entering the temple..THAT IS THE LAST THING I WANT. I want EVERYONE to get married in the temple and live happily ever after working their Mormon butts off till the end. But please understand the magnitude of what you are doing. If you are doing this to please parents and your community and are afraid of what they will think if you don’t..it’s ok. You don’t have to get married in the temple. Be honest with yourself. It is a HUGE step. It is a huge decision. It takes prayer and faith. Lots of prayer. If you aren’t ready, pray for faith, pray for diligence, ask God what He thinks about you entering the temple. I wasn’t 100% ready for the temple (no one is) but I KNEW The Church was true when I walked through those doors. My testimony helped me. The Spirit touches you inside to help you understand that this is true. So don’t worry, it will be ok. God can prepare you to enter the temple, and continually going to the temple. If you have any doubts about it, prayer can solve those issues for you. Sometimes have faith means trusting in God more than ourselves.

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I really don’t want to confuse anyone the temple=good.

Temple marriage=good.

Not having the strongest testimony and still receiving your endowments (but continue to go and grow afterwards)=good.

Getting married in the temple just because your parents want you to or you will feel embarrassed/

unworthy but still going through/

not planning on keeping those covenants after your wedding but still going through the temple=not so good.

Civil wedding=good.

Both ways are good. If you can go through the temple and be married in the temple the first time=great! 

But if you have to wait a year, please do and don’t slack off about it. Get to the temple, set the date TODAY.

Part 2: Support the couple getting married no matter what. Growing up LDS I don’t want to say that the pressure that we have as a culture is bad. It’s not. It’s very good to feel pressured to get married in the temple to a worthy companion. But, if you know a couple that for one reason or another does not get married in the temple, please still be supportive of their marriage. Love them. Tell them how happy you are for them. Congratulate them. I can’t imagine what they must be feeling. It must be terrifying to worry about what others will say when you tell them you aren’t getting married in the temple. I think it takes so much courage and strength and honesty to choose a non-temple wedding in certain situations. At times it may be hard to admit that we made a mistake or we just aren’t ready yet. But if they feel the support of loved ones, they will get to the temple. That’s all that matters.

I have made mistakes and had members of the Church say rude things to me. It’s not your place to judge others. Leave them alone.

If you can’t say something nice walk away and pray about your sins and be reminded that you are not perfect.

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Conclusion: If you don’t agree with anything I say at least be kind to those that choose not to get married in the temple. Getting married in the Temple was one of my most proudest accomplishments in my life. It wasn’t easy, and I am so grateful for God’s help and Josh’s for getting there.  It was so very difficult. We sometimes couldn’t be alone and had to cut our time short together because it is so difficult. But it’s so worth it. The Temple is a beautiful holy place and I wish for everyone to be able to be sealed to their families inside for all eternity. For those that haven’t made it there yet: set the goal to go to the temple. Be diligent. Be honest. Be faithful. Have faith you can get there. The temple is for everyone. As a LDS community we are here to help one another get to the temple and maintain those covenants and not condemn or pass judgement on one another. The goal of the temple is not a one time thing. It should be a regular thing. It should be sacred and a place of refuge and learning for all of us, not just on our wedding day.

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7 thoughts on “LDS folks: It’s ok if you don’t get married in The Temple

  1. I couldn’t agree more!!! Brint an I were not married in the Temple at first. Did we meet judgement and criticism? YES! Especially by a “friend” who said we never last. (She by the way is now divorced and was married in the temple. Brint and I have been married for 17 years …hmmm) Did we get sealed right away? No, actually 10 years later. But I know that’s how it had to happen. When we did get sealed we knew it was the perfect time …a time perfect for us. We felt Heavenly Fathers presence there that day SO strongly …plus we appreciated it more then we would have if we did it years before. Do I want my girls sealed in the Temple, you bet. But I want them to make sure it the right time, right person AND right reason. Thank you for this blog post. People need to be aware of all sides …and that we are all trying to do the right thing.

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    • Thank you so much Dayna for sharing this! I am glad that you didn’t let that “friend” bother you too much. People can be so judgy and it’s hard to not let it bother us. Really the whole reason why I wrote this blog was for those who aren’t getting married in the temple and for those who are judging those who aren’t. I want those who aren’t getting married to know they are loved and not being judged by everyone-and God is proud of them no matter what! For those that say rude comments, I hope they keep their mouth shut or change their ways because what they have to say can be very detrimental!

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  2. Thank you for this. I have been struggling so much lately. My fiancé and I made a mistake and we are getting married civilly soon. We’ve been receiving rude comments from both family and friends, comments that leave me in tears. I needed to be told it was okay.
    We do plan on getting sealed ASAP but we can’t just be in limbo and not be married and not knowing exactly when we’ll be able to. Plans couldn’t be made, apartments couldn’t be looked at, nothing. We made our decision and we’re feeling pretty good about it. I’m just sad some of our family and friends feel the need to judge us for out decision. It’s hard. So, thank you for this.

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    • Alice girl you are NOT alone and I admire your strength so much! Sometimes family can be the harshest critiques (and least supportive). But focus on the good people around you who ARE supporting you and ignore the rest. The Lord is not upset at you, He is proud of you. You are doing the right thing. WIth the temple as your goal you can’t go wrong!! I hope it works out for you. 🙂

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  3. My husband and I were married civilly first with the intent to go to the temple in a year. It took is 8 and we almost didn’t make it. Satan’s power is real and it isn’t a walk in the park to prepare for temple marriage whenever you go. With that said, I am grateful for the knowledge of the difference between civil and temple marriage. After we were sealed, our relationships were slower to anger when we disagreed. We had other options presented to us through the third member in our marriage when problems occurred. The best way to describe it is to liken it to a warm blanket wrapped around our whole family.

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