By Alexis Tanner Lane
We live such busy lives with schedules packed with commitments, events, work, taking care of family members, among so many other things, that it can be hard to make time to get to the temple. President Thomas S. Monson said, "To you who are worthy and able to attend the temple, I would admonish you to go often. The temple is a place where we can find peace. There we receive a renewed dedication to the gospel and a strengthened resolve to keep the commandments." Going often is different for everyone. Depending on our individual circumstances, we should counsel with the Lord what “often” means to each of us. Even when we have the desire and intention to go, things can get in the way of us getting to the temple. Here are some ways that can help us get to the temple when it seems hard to get there.
Take Turns with Your Spouse
If you don’t want to or aren’t able to find a babysitter, you can schedule a time when you can go and your spouse watches the kids. Then the other person can go another time. When we lived far from the temple, we would drive there together and take turns doing a session and then switch. The person who wasn’t in the temple would take the kids to the park, eat lunch, go to a store, or anything we could find nearby. Now that we live close to the temple, my husband will often go in the morning before work and I go when he can watch the kids.
Babysitting can get expensive. If you can find another couple who would be interested in trading babysitting, you can take turns watching each others’ kids and going to the temple. This also allows you and your spouse to go together.
Not sure what to do on your next date night? Try to plan one of your date nights as a trip to the temple. This way it’s planned and you can go together.
Organize a Ward Temple Day
This is a great help to parents whether you live close or far from the temple. Encourage your ward to have a ward temple day and ask for parent volunteers or youth volunteers to watch the kids while couples attend the temple. They can do this at the church where the kids can run around in the gym and play with the nursery toys.
Go with Your Teens
Many wards will organize temple trips for the youth. If you have a calling with the youth, your children are old enough to go to the temple, or the ward is looking for volunteers to attend with the youth, try to go with the teens and help participate in the work.
Ask for a Volunteer to Babysit
Many young women will babysit for free as a service for couples going to the temple. Ask the Young Women's president in your ward to see if any of the young women would be interested in babysitting as a service. Or if you have teenage daughters or have a calling in young womens, encourage them to find young couples or families who may be in need of a babysitter.
Do a Shorter Ordinance (or just go in the celestial room)
When I don’t have a lot of time, I try to do an ordinance that doesn’t take as long as an endowment session. You can even just go straight to the Celestial Room without doing an ordinance and take some time away from the world. Just being in the temple allows greater peace and direction to come into your life.
Make an Appointment with the Lord
You’re more likely to get to the temple if it’s on your schedule! Instead of saying you’ll go when you have time, make an appointment with the Lord and stick with it! Things can always get in the way, but if we stick to our commitment, we’ll find we’re able to get to the temple more often.
Temples are being built at a more rapid pace than ever so that members will have better access to the temple. Let’s take advantage of these temples and attend as often as we can in the season that we’re in. Elder Boyd K. Packer said, "Firmly resolve now that you will do everything you can do to aid temple work and the genealogical work that supports it and to assist every living soul and every soul beyond the veil in every way you can with every resource at your disposal. Come to the temple!"
Alexis Tanner is a mother of five, podcaster, and writer. She loves reading, family history work, taking her kids on adventures, and podcasting with her husband at the Parenting In Real Life Podcast. You can find Alexis on Instagram @parentingirlpodcast.