Sunday, February 27, 2011

With great power, comes great responsibility...

"With Great Power, Comes Great Responsibility." -the Spider-Man charge

When the Seminary material I'm teaching the youth on a given week collides with lessons I personally need it feels fortuitous, uncanny in a good way.

In class this week we studied Sections 109 and 110 in the Doctrine and Covenants. Section 109 is the Dedicatory Prayer for the Kirtland Temple and Section 110 is the record of the Lord's appearance at the Kirtland Temple as well as Moses, Elias, and Elijah.

In class we talked a lot about receiving our temple endowment and the power that comes from going to the temple. We made a list (with some help from quotes by General Authorities) of examples of the great power we can receive in the temple.

Our list certainly isn't inclusive, but it's a good start:
- the power of enlightenment
- the power of testimony
- the power of understanding
- the power to thwart the forces of evil
- the power to use our gifts and capabilities with increased effectiveness
- the power to overcome sin and stand in holy places
- the power to strengthen our families

As I mulled over the list, it occurred to me that while I do a decent job at getting to the temple (generally monthly), I could do much better at seeking out these specific powers. Obviously I'm in need of any and all special powers I can gain spiritually, if nothing else, just to counter the temporal doofus I can be! But, hey, if you think about it, Peter Parker was sort of goofy without his Spider-man powers too.

Well, yesterday we attended the Oakland Temple as Los Gatos Ward members in conjunction with our Ward Conference this weekend. Because of our Seminary lessons, I was more contemplative during the endowment session, thinking about promised powers, and it definitely heightened my experience.

The saints in Kirtland, Ohio in 1836 were so stalwart and practically lived in squalor while they focused everything on building the house of the Lord. The saints made huge sacrifices to ensure the temple was completed. I have a renewed sense of what a great blessing it is to have opportunities to visit temples. As well as the responsibility (ah, there is always a catch!) that comes along with that privilege!

"For of him unto whom much is given much is required." -Doctrine & Covenants 82:3 (our Scripture Mastery equivalent to the Spider-Man charge)