LDS Lesson Ideas

Rainier Oregon Stake

Christmas Heralds

by Lois Anne Williams


Candles with their sparkling glow
Tell of Christ born long ago.
Chiming bells that gaily ring
Tell us of the infant King.
Evergreens trimmed bright and gay
Tell of Christ’s eternal way.
Christmas joys we hear and see
Tell that Christ loves you and me.
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Courage ~ Come Listen to a Prophet’s Voice

Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. (John 14:27.)
When you are baptized, you take upon you the name of Jesus Christ. It takes great courage to honor that name by all you do and all you say. President Gordon B. Hinckley has written about that kind of courage.
As members of the Church, we . . .  [are] set apart from the world. . . .  (Latter-day Saints)  may know discouragement and heartache as they explain their Church membership to family and friends. . . . The price of discipleship is personal courage. . . .
There is no more poignant (touching) picture in all history than that of Jesus in Gethsemane and upon the cross, alone: the Redeemer of mankind, the Savior of the world, bringing to pass the Atonement.
I remember being with President Harold B. Lee (1899–1973) in the Garden of Gethsemane in Jerusalem. We could sense, if only in a very small degree, the terrible struggle that took place there, a struggle so intense . . . that blood
came from every pore (see Luke 22:44; Doctrine and Covenants 19:18). . . . We recalled that evil men laid brutal hands upon the Son of God. We recalled that lonely figure on the cross, crying out in anguish, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” (Matthew 27:46). Yet, courageously, the Savior of the world moved forward to bring about the Atonement in our behalf. . . .
I think of a friend whom I knew when I was a missionary in London many years ago. He came to our door through the rain one night. I answered his knock and invited him in. He said, as I remember,“I have to talk to someone.
I’m all alone.” I asked what the problem was.
He said, “When I joined the Church, my father told me to get out of his house and never come back. . . . Last month my boss fired me because I am a member of this Church. And last night the girl I love said she would never marry me because I’m a Mormon.”
I said, “If this has cost you so much, why don’t you leave the Church and go back to your father’s home, . . . to the job that meant so much to you, and marry the girl you think you love?”
He said nothing for what seemed a long time. Then, putting his head in his hands, he sobbed as if his heart would break. Finally he looked up through his tears and said, “I couldn’t do that. I know this is true, and if it were to cost me my life, I could not give it up.” He picked up his wet hat and walked to the
door and went out into the rain. . . . I should like to say to . . . young men and
women of the Church, that I hope you may come to know inner personal courage. . . .

It takes resolution to be virtuous when those around you scoff at virtue. It takes commitment to abstain from [drugs and alcohol] when those
around you scoff. . . . It takes love in our hearts to speak in peaceful testimony of the divinity of the Lord Jesus Christ to those who would mock
Him and belittle and demean Him.
There will be times that demand courage for each of us. . . . Each of us is to live with his or her testimony. Unless we do, we will be miserable
and dreadfully alone. . . . Yet while there may be . . . heartache, even heartbreak, there can be peace and comfort and strength from the Lord for those who follow Him. . . .
The Lord [has promised]: “I will go before your face. I will be on your right hand and on your left, and my Spirit shall be in your hearts, and mine angels round about you, to bear you up” (Doctrine and Covenants 84:88). . . .
May we go forward with our righteous convictions.
May we walk in truth and in faith and in love. For if we do so, we will be upheld and strengthened by the Lord.

 

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Confernce Time

Some families have traditions as they prepare for and listen to general conference. Do you have any conference traditions? We’d like to hear about them. Turn to page 48 for contact information.

We talk about King Benjamin’s speech to the Nephites. The whole kingdom gathered and turned their tents toward the prophet. So we created a tent in the living room facing the television. We love sitting in the tent and listening to the prophet.

–Griffith Family

We like to play gospel bingo. We print bingo cards with gospel topics and then we put a bean or a piece of candy on the squares when speakers mention the topics. It helps us pay attention and have fun.

–Johnston Family

We use coloring pages to color in the tie of the General Authority who is speaking. We enjoy coloring the ties the same color as those of the General Authorities.

–Rutz Family

We always have a puzzle set up in the living room, where we watch general conference. We like to piece together the puzzle while the General Authorities speak. It keeps us focused.

–Barnes Family

We like the general conference notebook that we can print from lds.org. The activities are great, and we are able to discuss what we learn at conference in family home evening.

–Guymon Family

We make a breakfast casserole Saturday night and bake it in the morning. This is the only time in the year when we eat together with the television on, which makes it special.

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What Makes a Dad

What Makes a DadGod took the strength of a mountain,
The majesty of a tree,
The warmth of a summer sun,
The calm of a quiet sea,
The generous soul of nature,
The comforting arm of night,
The wisdom of the ages,
The power of the eagle’s flight,
The joy of a morning in spring,
The faith of a mustard seed,
The patience of eternity,
The depth of a family need,
Then God combined these qualities,
When there was nothing more to add,
He knew His masterpiece was complete,
And so,

He called it … Dad

Author Unknown

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My Father

By Barbara J. Porter


My father’s feet will lead me
in paths I know are right.
My father’s knees will bend with mine
as we say prayers at night.
My father’s lap will hold me
when I need a place to rest.
And when I’m sad, I like to lay
my head upon his chest.
My father’s hands are big and strong,
and they work hard for me.
My father’s arms can lift me up
so I may better see.
My father’s lips will speak to me
with words of truth each day.
My father’s ears will listen
to the things I have to say.
I like to sit so very still
and look into his eyes.
I know he understands me,
and he is good and wise.
I’m glad I have a father
who guides me with his love.
He helps me better understand
my Father up above.

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My Grandpa

By Bertra Kusik

Some grandpas live in hilltop homes
And drive around new cars;
Some grandpas travel ‘round the world
To places very far.
Some grandpas have old walking canes;
Some play golf or bowl.
My grandpa is the best of all—
He has a fishing hole!

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Every Day a Father’s Day

Father’s Day is usually celebrated one day every June, but there can be other father’s days too. Fathers never stop being fathers, even when the holiday is over.

Besides your earthly father, who is the father of your earthly body, you pray to Heavenly Father, who is the Father of your spirit body. And there are other fathers who are concerned about your happiness and success—your grandfather; your bishop, who is often called the father of the ward; or perhaps you have a stepfather.

Countries, too, have wise and brave leaders who are looked upon as fathers by those who live there. George Washington is known as the “Father of His Country” because of his valiant leadership and deep devotion to the welfare of his countrymen in North America, who wanted to live as a free people. Simon Bolivar was called El Libertador (The Liberator) or the “George Washington of South America” because of his ability to help several South American countries gain their independence from the Spanish conquistadors. Leaders in other lands are thought of as fathers of their countries because of their loyalty and love for their people.

To show that you remember your fathers on the other 364 days of the year, here are some ways to make them happy:

Heavenly Father

Learn to obey Heavenly Father’s commandments by listening to the counsel of your parents and the instructions from your teachers. Pray to Heavenly Father often. He is real and He loves you. Avoid temptation. Satan is also real, and he can entice you to do things that are wrong.

Earthly Father

Few things please a father more than having a son or daughter who is unselfish, helpful, pleasant, and kind and loving to everyone.

Learn to work hard, study hard, and play hard. When a father’s family is happy, it helps him to become a better kind of person.

Father of the Ward (Bishop)

In addition to his own family, a bishop has responsibility for the welfare of a larger family—all the members of his ward. Another big responsibility the bishop has is the care and upkeep of the meetinghouse. Some of the money paid to the bishop as a contribution to the Church is used to light and heat the building and to pay for many other necessary supplies. The bishop and custodian are especially grateful when we treat the building and all its furnishings and grounds kindly. Remember—it is really the Lord’s house, a place that can be acceptable to Him and a place where we can worship Him in peace and safety.

Father of Your Country

Just as fathers of countries hope that their people will be loyal, patriotic, considerate, and law-abiding citizens who recognize individual differences and needs, local public officials or “City Fathers” have the same hopes and concerns for their people.

If you show that you remember your fathers’ enduring love for you by the way you live, every day can truly be a Fathers’ Day.

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Father’s Day Story

By Margaret Shauers


Honor thy father and thy mother (1 Ne. 17:55).

Lisa was sad. The next day was Father’s Day, and her father was far away in another country. And it was already Father’s Day there.

“Why does Dad have to be in the Army?” she asked Mom. “I want him to be home, especially tomorrow. More than anything, I want Dad home on Father’s Day so I can give him a big hug.”

“The Army is Dad’s job right now,” Mom said. “But when he calls today, you can talk to him and tell him how much you miss him. We sent Dad a present three weeks ago. He knows that you love him.”

Then Mom sighed. “I had better take out the trash before fixing lunch. Taking the storm windows down yesterday took so much time that I didn’t take it out before I went to bed.”

Lisa watched Mom pick up the heavy trash container. Dad usually takes out the trash, she thought. He takes the storm windows down, mows the grass, and fixes our car. Mom must wish Dad were home too. There are lots of extra things she has to do that he does when he’s home.

Lisa thought about Dad. “I bet Dad worries about Mom doing everything he would do if he was home,” she said out loud. Then she smiled. Now she knew something special she could do for him today, even though he was far away.

She ran to the cabinet, found the silverware for lunch, placed it on the table, and went to get the plates.

“I can’t use the stove yet, or I would have cooked, too,” she told Mom later, while they were eating.

After lunch, Lisa helped Mom do the dishes. She found the newspaper and brought it for her to read. Then she went upstairs and picked up the toys on her bedroom floor. When the telephone rang, she was carrying her dirty laundry to the hamper in the bathroom.

“Happy Father’s Day!” Lisa cried when she heard her dad’s voice on the telephone. “I miss you, and I wish you were home.” Then she told him about the extra things she’d done to help Mom. “Mom does a lot of your chores every day, so I thought you might like it if I did something special for her as another Father’s Day present.”

“Helping your mother is the best Father’s Day gift you’ve ever given me!” Dad told her. “I have a Father’s Day surprise for you too. Next month, I’ll be coming back to the States. I’ll still be in the Army, but you and Mom can come and live at the Army base with me. Won’t that be fun? We’ll all be together again.”

“I’m saving up a big hug to give Dad the minute he gets home,” Lisa told Mom when she hung up the phone. “And I’ll keep helping you until he gets home, because that will be our real Father’s Day this year.”

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The Good Samaritan

“The Good Samaritan,” Friend, May 1999, 39

A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you (John 13:34).

One day a lawyer asked Jesus Christ, “What shall I do to inherit eternal life?” The Savior asked what the lawyer thought that the law said he needed to do, and the lawyer replied, “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.”

“Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live,” Jesus said.

“Who is my neighbour?” the man asked.

Jesus answered by telling him a parable.

A Jewish man was traveling from Jerusalem to Jericho when thieves attacked him. They took his clothes, beat him, and left him near death.

When a Jewish priest came down the road and saw the wounded man, he crossed to the other side of the road to avoid him and continued his journey.

Next a Levite, also a citizen of Judah, approached. He looked at the wounded man, then he, too, crossed the road and went on his way without helping the man.

Finally a man from Samaria came along the road. The Jews and the Samaritans were bitter enemies, but the Samaritan saw that the injured man needed help. He bandaged the man’s wounds, put him on his pack animal, took him to an inn, and cared for the injured man there. When the Samaritan left the next day, he paid the innkeeper to look after the man until he got better. He promised that if caring for the man cost more, he would pay the innkeeper the next time he was there.

“Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell among the thieves?” Jesus asked the lawyer.

When the lawyer said, “He that shewed mercy on him.” Jesus said, “Go, and do thou likewise.” (See Luke 10:25–37.)

We should each follow Jesus Christ’s example by loving and caring for one another. As we do, we will know that Jesus’ teachings are true and our faith in Him will grow.

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