by Quentin L. Cook
Years ago, when I moved back to my hometown and farther away from a temple, I decided to make temple attendance a goal. For some reason, I waited until I was 100 miles away from a temple to attend the temple once a month. It’s not easy. It usually takes up a whole Saturday.
I told my bishop at the time and he brushed it aside as if it wasn’t a realistic goal. So, I brushed it aside for a couple of years. But a few years ago, I picked it back up and I’ve attended the temple at least once a month for the past 3.5 years.
As I stated, it’s not easy. With my social anxiety, the temple does not always bring me peace. Sometimes it is a source of anxiety if I feel like I’m messing something up and being watched. So then, why do I do it?
A couple of months ago I was at my wit’s end. It’s possible I was thisclose to a nervous breakdown. This has been a horrible, terrible, no good lousy year with trial after heavy trial hitting me. I was succumbing to Satan’s naysayings – “You’re a horrible, terrible, no good lousy leader.” “You have failed.” “Why do you keep trying?”
It was a rough go and you can see why I struggled with that much negative chatter in my head. I felt agitated, depressed, and carried a great weight with me. Nothing I did seemed to alleviate those feelings. I prayed. I fasted. I read my scriptures. And all those things probably helped me hold on just a little longer.
But it wasn’t until I attended the temple again in June that the weight finally lifted. I can’t explain it other than to say I was reminded of certain things and my armor was repaired.
It came in just the nick of time, too. July proved to be the culmination of all my trials for the year put into one package. If I didn’t have that renewal in June, I’m pretty sure July would have drowned me for good.
So while I don’t understand all things. And there are things I am trusting in faith, I have learned ‘whether by own voice or the voice of my servant it is the same’ and that I should do. It really is for my benefit.