Lesson 2: The Family is Central to His Plan
FAMILY PROCLAMATION STATES: ...and that the family is central to the Creator’s plan for the eternal destiny of His children.
TEACHING AIDES: Copies of the proclamation, crayons/colored pencils, toy family figures, picture of your family, plan of salvation visuals.
OPENING SONG: “Families Can Be Together Forever” CS, 188.
INTRODUCTION: Read the first paragraph of the family proclamation, emphasizing today’s portion. Have each child highlight this on their copy of the proclamation.
ASK: What does “central” mean?
Central = the center = the middle = of the greatest importance; essential.
Show a picture of your family. Heavenly Father planned for you to come to earth and belong to a family. He knew that you needed a loving family to help you grow and learn how to return to Him someday. He knows that being in a family and then creating a family of your own will help you experience joy and grow to become like Him. From “Strengthening the Family: The Family is Central to the Creator’s Plan,” Ensign
December 2004: “Birth into a family was the way God chose to send His spirit children to earth. Marriage and family relationships are the central means He has prepared to achieve His purposes. We learn the lessons of life, not in an Edenic garden, but in a context where we face challenge, opposition, hardship, and temptation (see 2 Ne. 2:11).” 6 Thus, we should not fear the troubles of our day but should view them as an environment in which faith can be strengthened and obedience refined. As Elder Joe J. Christensen, former member of the Presidency of the Seventy, observed, “How many truly great individuals do you know who never had to struggle?” The family is the primary support structure in God’s plan to help us resist evil, overcome weakness, and work out our salvation. For this reason we should do all we can to strengthen the family in these days of confusion and opposition. Using toy figures, ask the children to make a family similar to yours. Express your love for your family.
Use visual aids to teach the plan of salvation. (The Red Head Hostess has some phenomenal free printables.) Point out how family is central to Heavenly Father’s plan: As we welcomed each baby into our home, you each gained a body, which you needed to become like Heavenly Father and progress. Living in a family on earth with brothers and sisters, a father and mother helps us learn and grow. We learn how to share, love, forgive, etc. As parents, we teach you the gospel of Jesus Christ. Each of you can gain your own testimonies. When you are eight you can choose to be baptized. When you grow up, you can choose to be married in the temple and create families of your own. When you are a parent, you will learn even more how to be more like Jesus. Raising your own children helps you learn how to be more like your Heavenly Parents.
In temples, families are sealed together forever and we are linked to the great big family of Heavenly Father. Being in a family and having families of our own is central to Heavenly Father’s plan.
Sing “Home” CS, 192. Explain: This song teaches important truths about a home.
Abound = great in quantity/number; to be filled with
Home is where the heart is (touch your heart)
And warmth and love abound.
Home is where warm, circling arms
Go all the way around. (Hold your arms out in front of you, then bring them close and hug yourself.)
Home is where there’s father,
With strength and wisdom true.
Home is where there’s mother
And all the children too.
Home is where our Father,
Who dwells in heav’n above,
Guides us in the way we live
And lets us feel his love.
Bear testimony of the blessings of a home.
* Make the Plan of Salvation using sugar cookies.
* See Jocelyn's activity ideas for this part of the proclamation.
* Here are a couple of online video clips you could watch as a family (on the Plan of Salvation):
He will give you help
We are all Children of our Father in Heaven. Christ is the way back to Him.
* Make up a fun family cheer – even just a way to yell your name. Practice it a few times and make it part of your family’s routine.
* Play “Plan of Salvation Croquet”. Label the wire hoops with: Pre-earth life, Birth, Earth Life, Death, Spirit World, Resurrection, Final Judgment, Telestial, Terrestrial, and Celestial Kingdoms. Before the game review each part of the plan.
* Have each child make their own ceiling Plan of Salvation. As they color their own pictures, teach the doctrine. Supplies needed: card stock, markers, scissors, ribbon/string, tacks/tape to hang from ceiling. For life on earth: birth, baptism, mission, temple, a drawing of your family, death, etc. Remind the kids that Jesus was integral in the plan of salvation (integral = necessary to the completeness of the whole). Draw 3 pictures of Christ and tape them together in a triangle: Jesus’ baptism, Gethsemane, Resurrection. Cut out all the pictures, tape them to ribbon/string and hang them in a corner of children’s bedrooms or a playroom. Hang so it will go diagonal across the room. (Idea from The Hatchling Place - [post 1] [post 2] [post 3] [post 4])
* Paint your family out of pegs along with a paper mâché house.
Supplies: paper mâché house, enough pegs for each person in your family, Acrylic paint, Paint brushes, cups of water, napkins or paper towels, newspaper, Mod Podge (optional), Cover-ups or old clothes for the kids.
Instructions: Lay out newspaper to protect your working surface. Let each child paint their own doll. Help youngsters if needed. Mod Podge over them to seal, if desired.
You can also paint your own if you want a really “pretty” set. Add features with a fine tip permanent marker.