Active Latter-day Saints may attend LDS temples by meeting certain requirements and having worthiness interviews with members of the Bishopric and/or Stake Presidency. Before entering LDS temples we should spiritually prepare ourselves so that we are ready to receive additional understanding and enlightenment. Here is a list of ten ways we can better prepare ourselves to be spiritually ready to enter LDS temples.
Prayer is one of the best ways we can spiritually prepare ourselves. Pray for help to be prepared to enter the LDS temple during the week before you go as well as on the actual day of your visit. Pray for specific things you wish to learn, feel, and understand as you visit the House of the Lord. For those who have LDS temple recommends you can pray for those whose names you will place on the prayer roll. Make your prayers specific and continue to pray both during and after your visit.
Choosing to fast before entering LDS temples helps us to be more in tune with the Holy Ghost. Personal revelation, answers to prayers, and the peace of the Holy Spirit come more easily when we fast, especially when we fast with a purpose. Choose one or two very specific needs (for yourself or others) that you wish to fast about. To help dedicate your fast to the Lord open and close it with prayer. Focus on the things you are fasting for during the entire day of your visit to the LDS temple.
Studying the scriptures and church material is an important way to spiritually prepare ourselves. Before you go study a specific topic such as charity, families, the creation, or how to feel the Spirit. Memorize a verse or two and ponder on it before, during and after you visit the LDS temple. For those who will be attending for the first time study these Bible Dictionary topics: Anoint, Atonement, Christ, Covenant, Fall of Adam, Sacrifices, and Temple. (See Suggested Reading below for more.)
Music is a key element to opening our hearts and minds to feel the Spirit. During the week, and especially on the day you plan to attend the LDS temple, sing or listen to church hymns, instrumental music, or other uplifting songs of praise. Listen to the music as you do other things during the day (such as in a car, at work, or while at home) and then continue to listen after you've left the temple. Listening to inappropriate music will drive away the Spirit so choose good music the entire day!
Reading over our patriarchal blessings helps us remember the blessings and counsel we've been given. During the day of your LDS temple visit ponder on those things in your patriarchal blessing that you need to work on or that you'd like to understand better. Remember to pray about it too. Make a goal that will help you fulfill the blessings of, or understand better, your patriarchal blessing. If you don't have a patriarchal blessing make a goal that will help prepare you to receive it.
Positive thoughts and words can greatly support our spiritual preparation, especially when they replace negative ones. Only think or say those things that are kind and uplifting. When negative thoughts come to your mind change them so they become good and positive. During the week before and on the day of your LDS temple trip choose to only think and say those things the Lord would approve of. Pray for help to achieve this goal as well as to remember it during times of conflict or contention.
Counting our blessings helps us remember the numerous things we've been so generously blessed with and these feelings of gratitude help us open up to the Spirit. Write on a piece of paper 100 things you are thankful for. If you find it easy write another 100. Place your list where you can often read and add to it, such as in your journal, scriptures, or on the refrigerator. On the day you go focus on those blessings that come from regular LDS temple attendance. Make a goal to attend more often.
When we share our testimonies with others the spirit confirms it to those who's hearts are open. Share your testimony about the importance of LDS temples with a nonmember or a young child. Tell them why you are going and what you feel there. If you are going for the first time ask a friend, family member, leader, or home/visiting teacher to share their testimony with you. Sharing spiritual experiences related to LDS temple work is also a great way to become more spiritually prepared to go.
Remembering our baptismal covenants (and endowments for those who have received them) will help us to be more spiritually prepared to enter LDS temples. Researching our family history will quickly invite the spirit into our hearts as we help our ancestors receive their covenants. If you don't know how to do family history talk with someone from your Family History Center or visit the official LDS web site familysearch.org. You can also begin by writing your own family history or a journal entry.
Wearing clothes that are appropriate on Sundays is a wonderful way to help us focus on our spiritual preparation. Wear church attire on the day you plan to attend the LDS temple. This will help you remember that you will soon be entering the House of the Lord. It also creates the perfect opportunity to do missionary work if people ask why you're dressed up. (See #8 above.) Continuing to wear your church clothing after leaving will help you maintain the spirit of LDS temple attendance.