July 5, 2014
Years ago, in a setting I don’t even remember, a friend exclaimed, “Our Church is a class act!” Yes, it is, in the best sense of the word. I had a beautiful opportunity to experience that “classiness” last Sunday morning when a friend of my daughter’s was in Salt Lake for a convention. She stayed an extra day to visit Temple Square on Saturday because her family loves my daughter’s family and she wanted to understand their church. Her plane didn’t leave until noon on Sunday, so my daughter suggested she attend a broadcast of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. I was delighted to have the privilege of escorting her there.
The Music and The Spoken Word Independence Day program did not disappoint us. In the summer the performances are held in the Conference Center to accommodate the large crowds, and we had just enough time left to tour the building. Musically, artistically, technically, architecturally, and socially (as in hostesses and tour guides), the entire experience was an exquisite, celestial, “class act” and a visual and spiritual representation of the Savior.
As I dropped this lovely Christian woman off at her hotel so she could pack and catch her flight home, I felt so blessed by this opportunity. Driving home with the cruise control on, the road uncrowded, and the sun shining, I evaluated myself. How is my spirit? And how is the body I maintain for it? Given my limitations, ignoring the worldly expectations and judgments, what am I made of? Is there be sufficient granite to keep me standing strong in the storms that are coming? Sufficient velvet to keep my heart tender? Sufficient beauty and light to reflect the Savior’s love? Will my very body, inside and out, bear the stamp of my church?
That thought was probably generated by another Ensign article, the fourth this year that deals with our bodies. The author is also a “class act” and her article is a work of literary art. She said, “. . . when I keep [Christ’s] perspective, my body becomes a tool to bless the lives of God’s children, and proper maintenance and care of that tool demonstrates my recognition of His noble purposes.”
Some years ago we went to Nauvoo, a city made beautiful because, again, our Church is a “class act.” The Nauvoo countryside was gorgeous and the buildings handsome. We were able to attend the newly finished temple so our youngest daughter could receive her ordinances. She also danced as Hyrum Smith’s wife in the Pageant. It was a magnificent experience. However, I also saw a few pictures of the earliest days of Nauvoo when it was simply a shanty town!
In my past, when I was grossly overweight, sickly, sloppy, and lacking in energy, I was that shanty town. Today, with much help from nearly two decades on a plant food diet, I am a far better representation of my church and its stamp upon my life. There is still plenty of room for improvement, but I do aspire to become, eventually, a beautiful temple.
So may I suggest a standing ovation to Victoria Webb Rutherford, the very talented author of this latest, and most magnificent, article, “The Gift of Our Physical Bodies.” Let’s also applaud Marissa Widdison for a very nicely done companion piece in the July Friend, “My Body Is A Temple.”
And thank you Hyrum Smith, (the real one), also a “class act,” for this from the “Times and Seasons, ” June 1842:
God only is acquainted with the fountain of action, and the main springs of human events; he knows where disease is seated, and what is the cause of it; he is also acquainted with the spring of health; the balm of Gilead of life; he knows what course to pursue to restore mankind to their pristine excellency and primitive vigour, and health; and he has appointed the word of wisdom as one of the engines to bring about this thing, to remove the beastly appetites, the murderous disposition and the vitiated taste of man; to restore his body to health, and vigour, promote peace between him and the brute creation, and as one of the little wheels in Gods designs, to help to regulate the great machinery, which shall eventually revolutionize the earth, and bring about the restoration of all things, and when they are restored he will plant the tree of life, whose leaves shall be for the healing of the nations.