Sunday, June 6, 2010

Refuge In Times of Trouble...

'Look At The Sky' was the text message I received from my friend...and, I immediately went outside to see the sky for myself. It was an amazing sunset, my grandmother would have liked.

Since it was such a beautiful night, I decided to drive to the Salt Lake Temple. As I wrote this, I was sitting next to the reflection pond listening to the water pour over the edges, there was a gentle breeze, and the lighted granite temple stood in stark contrast against stormy night sky. The only thing that made it better was the cool rain, and the intermittent lighting of the sky with lighting and the accompanying crack of thunder.

As I sat there, the words of Psalms came to mind:

"The Lord also will be a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of trouble.
And they that know thy name will put their trust in thee: for thou, Lord, hast not forsaken them that seek thee.' (Psalms 9: 9-10)

The temple, like the Lord has always been a place for me to seek refuge from the storms of life. It is a place where I can forget my burdens and remember my blessings and tonight, as I sat in the light of the temple I was able to reflect on some of the beautiful teaching associated with it.

One such teaching is that of the special relationship that we have with our Father in Heaven and how it is essential for our happiness here. Through prayer I am convinced that we can receive guidance and direction in our David said, 'the Lord will not forsake them that seek him.'. In fact it is quite the opposite, He will be a 'refuge in times of trouble'.

There will be times when we may hear the Lord say to us:

'In a little wrath I hid my face from thee for a moment...'

but then come the reassuring words:

'...but with everlasting kindness will I have mercy on thee...for the mountains shall depart, and the hills be removed; but my kindness shall not depart from thee, neither shall the covenant of my peace be removed..." (Psalms 54)

I once heard the phrase, 'Life is a heck of a thing to happen to a person.'. Each of us will face trials and tribulations, some of them will seem to be greater than we can handle. We also live in challenging times when natural disasters are abundant, economies throughout the world are failing, and wars are taking place everywhere. In addition to these temporal afflictions that we face there are spiritual ones with perhaps even great consequences.

In a world where variables are constantly changing, there is one invariable constant and that is the love of our Heavenly Father. He will be there to comfort in times of sorrow, lift up in times of despair, and guide us when we've lost our way.

We must seek refuge from the storm through prayer and temple attendance. I will end with a scripture that was shared with me by the same friend who told me to 'Look Up' that scripture is a beautiful promise:

'Trust in the Lord with all thine heart and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all ways acknowledge him and he shall direct thy paths.' (Psalms 3)

Let us not only 'look up' but let us also 'look to' the temple and the Lord to be our refuge from the storms that swirl around us. As I left tonight the storm clouds had disappeared, the wind had died down, and there was a stillness in the air...the storms of life will pass.


  1. Dear T,
    You do NOT disappoint my friend. Thank you x a billion for your reassuring words. While I read this I thought of a certain n of my that I've been worrying about lately. Immediately after my worries started I felt the reassurance within my heart that Heavenly Father loves her EVEN MORE than I do, which is hard for me to fathom and that He will prepare a way. The next day do you know where I went? Straight to the temple - the house of refuge and I prayed. Elder Vaughn J. Featherstone said, "I promise you that all who faithfully attend to temple work will be blessed beyond measure. Your families will draw closer to the Lord, unseen angels will watch over your loved ones when satanic forces tempt them, the veil will be thin, and great spiritual experiences will distill upon this people." Someone once said in a talk that, if you see someone you care about heading for the edge of a cliff you don't just kneel down and pray, you catch them. I am grateful for this gospel and the courage (aka faith) it gives me to lift up those I care about even though Satan would have me think that "it's hard" and maybe "not a big deal." What have we to fear? "Fear NOT man, for he cannot hurt thee...hold on thy way for I shall be with thee..." All such comforting and strengthening words. I love it all and I know it's true! Thanks for the beautiful image this post instills in my mind, my heart and my testimony. I love ya, Mr. T :)
    -Miss Ellie Kay Hesse

  2. Welcome back to blogging Trav. Boy, you never do anything half-way, do you? I loved your post... I really needed to hear that. Thank you. Has anyone told you lately how AMAZING you are? Well anyway, great words of wisdom.
    And it WAS a great storm, wasn't it?

  3. Thanks Travis for sharing such a beautiful testimony of the temple. I wish I lived closer, but I don't live that far (only 3 hours) and need to go more often.