What will you focus on this week as we study Matthew 4; Luke 4-5 “The Spirit of the Lord Is upon Me” (February 4-10)? Below you will discover helps for communing with God, fasting, resisting temptations, our divine identity, and more.
”How to Know for Yourself” by President Henry B. Eyring
”What is a Pure Testimony” Youth article
”Your Patriarchal Blessing:A Liahona of Light” by President Thomas S. Monson
”You Have a Noble Birthright” by Julie B Beck
”What a Patriarchal Blessing Can Do for You- Youth Article
”Patriarchs and Patriarchal Blessings- Lesson 10: Duties and Blessings of the Priesthood: Basic Manual for Priesthood Holders, Part A (2000), 69–76
”Am I a Child of God?” by Elder Brian K. Taylor
”Is Not This the Fast That I Have Chosen?" by President Henry B. Eyring
“Tested and Tempted- But Helped” by Elder Hugo Montoya
“Temptation”- True to the Faith
“Be Not Deceived” by President Dallin H. Oaks
Deseret Bookshelf PLUS Recommendations
These are great to listen to together in the car on the way to school. My whole family loves listening to the youth speaker ones especially. Remember, as a Deseret Bookshelf PLUS member, you can access these eBooks or audio books anytime. Find out more about Deseret Bookshelf PLUS.
- "Jesus the Christ" by James E. Talmage (audio)
- "Because of the Messiah in a Manger" by Brad Wilcox (audio)
- "The Mortal Messiah" by Bruce R. McConkie (ebook)
- "5 Temptation Killers" by Hank Smith (youth talk)
- "The Parable of the Chocolate Chips" by Sharon Larsen (ebook)
- "Recipe for Revelation: Learning to Pray in a Way to Get Prayers Answered" by Eric D. Richards (youth talk)
Watch a video and discuss it after dinner, print out images for your bulletin board, make a playlist to use to encourage personal study time, or learn a new song!
Jesus Declares He Is the Messiah (about 3 1/2 minutes)- Bible video
Jesus Is Tempted (about 1 /12 minutes)- Illustrated scripture story
Angry People in Nazareth (about 1 1/2 minutes)- Illustrated scripture story
Jesus Heals a Possess Man (about 2 minutes)- Bible video
Who is Jesus (about 2 minuets)- Children tell in their own words who is Jesus
He Lives: Testimonies of Jesus Christ (about 2 minuets)- See and hear modern-day Apostles testify that Jesus is the Savior and that He lives today.
We Believe (about 3 minuets)- Youth share their testimonies of the Savior.
Stay within the Lines (about 5 minutes)- Youth video about how we must stay in the lines just like athletes.
The Sting of the Scorpion (about 2 minutes)- Compare the sting of the scorpion with what we must do to avoid sin.
His Patriarchal Blessing (about 3 1/2 minuets)- An Italian missionary with diabetes talks about how he didn’t serve his mission until he received his patriarchal blessing.
Patriarchal Blessings- A Personal Liahona (about 2 /12 minutes)- Clip from President Monson's talk.
Our Divine Destiny (about 3 1/2 minuets)- Various youth and young adults testify of the importance of recognizing who you are as a child of God
Fasting: Philippines Widow (about 2 minutes)- Personal story of a woman showing faith to fast and donate an offering.
Fasting: Young Single Adult Ward, Amanda (about 2 1/2 minutes)- How fasting plays a part in her life.
Fasting: Romania, Paun Family (about 3 minutes)- A father teaches his daughter the importance of fasting.
Fishers of Men (about 2 1/2 minutes)- Kids tell the story in their own words.
The LDS Media app is great for compiling playlists.
Hang one on the fridge, mail it to a friend, cut it into a puzzle, and more! Bright Idea posters come from the Friend, Mormonads are from The New Era, and others are images found throughout LDS.org
“In the morning when I wake…”- Bright Idea
Image Collection: Prayer- Lots of poster visual aids
“In some ways, our testimony is like a snowball”- Bright Idea
Young Woman Bearing Testimony- Poster visual aid
Testify of Our Faith- Quote poster
Our Heavenly Father Is Only A Prayer Away- Bright Idea
Courage- Bright Ideas
You are not invisible- Bright Idea
Temptation and Sin- Various Mormonad to use- play memory, talk about the funny pictures, make them into postcards, etc.
The Law of the Fast- Making Fasting More Meaningful- Mormon Channel
Questions to Ponder
Use these questions to help you ponder as you do your personal studies, encourage journaling for your kids, text them to a friend or child to get the conversation going, or take them with you in the car and randomly draw from a bag as you carpool to school or your next practice. These go beyond the questions in the manual.
What does the word “commune” mean to you?
How can praying to Heavenly Father be different then communing with Him? What can you do to better commune with God?
When was the last time you communed with God?
How has communing with God helped you overcome difficult times in your life?
How can you make your prayers to Heavenly Father more meaningful?
After reading about how Jesus was tempted in Matthew 4:1-11, which verse stands out most to you? How does it make you feel?
Why does Heavenly Father allow temptations and challenges in our lives?
How have you overcome temptations in the past? What did you learn? How does that experience help you now?
What can you do now to be prepared for temptations to come?
What are some areas in your life that maybe more vulnerable to temptations? How can you strengthen them? Who else can help you resist temptations?
How have you come to know Jesus? What have you done to develop a relationship with Him?
What is your favorite scripture story about Jesus?
How can reading about Jesus Christ’s life improve yours?
Have you ever shared your testimony of Jesus? Write down your experiences.
Is there anyone in your life who might benefit from hearing about your testimony of Jesus’ love?
How has your testimony changed through the years? How has it changed in just this last year?
Have you received your patriarchal blessing? What do you recall about the day? How can you prepare yourself to receive one if you haven’t yet?
How can we come to know our personal potential of this life?
Ask a loved one or a friend to write down what they admire about you. Are you surprised by some of the traits they have listed? How can this exercise help you?
When have you been asked to do something out of your comfort zone? Were you able to overcome that feeling? How were you able to do that?
What church callings or positions have you been in? How have you grown from them? How has the Savior helped you?
How has understanding your divine nature been an influence for you?
What helps you escape the cycle of negative thoughts? What helps you avoid the drain of comparison?
How have you been reminded of your worth?
How can we make the love we feel for the Savior the overriding influence in our lives instead of self-doubts, etc.?
What distractions may cause you to be confused about who you are?
What helps you remember clearly your true identity?
What are some reasons you fast?
These are my ideas. My hope is that my thoughts may be a springboard to your own great ideas that are right for you and your family. Some ideas are for families with young children while others might be for widows meeting together as a group. Read through and find what’s right for your situation.
Discuss ways we can feel close to God using my handouts. One is meant for younger kids and one for the older set. The last column is for when you feel close to God. Then work backwards and think about what you did to feel that way. Then one more time so you can see the pattern in your life of what you can do to commune with and be close to God.
Review the plan of salvation and Christ’s role in making that a success for all of us (You may want to use my Plan of Salvation printables from two weeks ago). How did He know what to do? Then read Matthew 4:1 (including the JST footnote) and discuss one way He learned was by communing with God. How can we learn what our mission is? This is a great opportunity to discuss patriarchal blessings. You can use some the study suggestions to help.
Study the temptations Jesus faced just after communing with God. Write or draw things you can learn from those verses plus a few more about temptation using my scripture square worksheet above.
Share how Tongan fishermen catch octopuses using maka-feke. Then discuss how Satan tries to lure us into sin. Use this story from President Thomas S. Monson to help plus there is a picture to show what a maka-feke looks like.
Use Lehi’s Dream to discuss how we can avoid falling into sin. How does the iron rod help us? What does it represent, etc.? If you have young kids, get my Understanding Lehi’s Dream: A Scripture Study Journal. Includes a matching game and fact cards!
Demonstrate temptation and how it can suck you in with this egg object lesson from Children’s Ministry Perspectives.
As you discuss resisting temptations, you can also focus on choosing the right. Turn your family into Choosing the Right superheros with my CTR Super Fun Pack! Then talk about how it’s super to choose the right!
Help your little ones understand why we fast by playing a fun game explained on The Running Mormon.
Help your older ones fast on Fast Sundays with this fridge handout from Mormon Share. You can discuss it during your lesson this week then hang it up on the fridge every month. Be sure to download the inside too!
Use my fasting handouts to help your family decide what to fast about. In my family, the biggest excuse to not fast is not having a good reason. Having ideas help! One is for you to draw or write down a bunch of ideas you brainstorm together. The other you can leave up in your house over the next few months. They can tear off the strip they want to focus on and keep it with them throughout the day to remember what to ponder about it.
You may also want to discuss how you can make your prayers more meaningful or simply discuss prayer with my free handouts in my Primary 3 Lesson 24 lesson helps.
Display my free poster print of the scripture in D&C 10:5 that discusses how prayer can help us overcome temptations. Discuss what other things might help us and how we can be a strength to each other when we are having a hard time.
One of the first things Satan attacked was God’s identity. Discuss our own divine natures by writing, "Because I am a child of God..." on a big piece of paper and asking your family or group to finish the sentence. Why does it matter that we know who we are and our true value? You can show this show video clip (Divine Potential) then discuss different answers to why it matters.
Recite the Young Women's theme and discuss why it starts they way it does. How does that influence the rest of the theme? How does knowing you are a child of God impact your life and decisions?
Surprise your family with a sweet treat this week! Remind your group or family of their divine worth with my Child of God tic tac wrappers. Put it on top of their pillow, slip it into their school bag, or present it to them with other words of praise.
Discuss what the word “Messiah” means as well as the Greek equivalent, “Christ” using the Guide to the Scriptures or the Bible Dictionary. What new insight do you gain from Luke 4:16-32 as you remember these definitions and additional information?
Hand out a picture of Jesus Christ to your family and group and encourage them to glue them in their journals then write around the image words you would use to describe Jesus Christ. Share and discuss when finished. You can find images to print on LDS.org such as Jesus Christ Is the Messiah or The Savior (You may want to bookmark this media page full of images of Jesus Christ for reference as you study the Gospels). Then on your next journal page ponder the question in the manual, “Is there anything that might prevent you from fully accepting Christ as your personal Savior?”
Do as Christ did and use experiences that are familiar with your group or family to teach a gospel principle. Have everyone bring an object that is important to them or a photo of them doing something they love and put it into a big paper bag. Pass the bag around to each person and ask them to draw one thing out of the bag without looking. If they get their own item, you can have them try again. Then ask everyone to share how they could use that item or experience to relate a gospel principle.
How can your family follow Christ’s example and serve another this week? There are a lot of great free printables on the blog to help give you ideas. Type “service” in the search box at the top of this page (Note: You need to allow Flash on this site or you won’t get any results). Each day you do an act of service, add a heart to my free Love One Another banner.
Spend some time preparing names to take the to the temple. You can do this by indexing names, using the new Ordinance Ready feature on FamilySearch.org, or researching your family line. If you want to dive deeper into family history this week, there are loads of ideas to do so on this family history resource page.
Remember to add to your Mission Impossible folder this week as well as you talk about some of the miracles Christ performed!
Print my poster quote out as a reminder of our potential with God’s help. You can demonstrate this quote by giving your family a few blocks to build a house. When they have completed the job, you bring in extra blocks and build a castle. Note: The poster comes in a dark background as well as white.
Have your children tell the story of the apostles being called in their own words. You could even record it and do a video like this Children’s Bible one.
- Looking for more poster to hang up or need additional scriptural insights? The Red Headed Hostess has great weekly packets. There are several posters included in this week’s lesson kit! Make them into puzzles, put them up throughout your house, mail one to a friend, and more. Or you could subscribe monthly and access all the helps every month.
Use these activities during your lesson, as a morning activity reminder, or any other time to quietly reinforce this week’s lesson. Many of these resources are from LDS.org, however, some may be from other helpful bloggers.
Fasting and Prayer- Color and put together these movable figures (includes a story)
Choose the Right
Learning from Mistakes- Order the pictures to show what we need to do when we do make mistakes.
CTR Game- Find the words in this word jumble to answer the questions.
Choosing the Right Through Study and Prayer- Maze...I know my son can kind of do these and he is in the youngest class but it can be frustrating for this age as well.
If the Savior Stood Beside Me- Make this 3D picture as a reminder.
My Choices Have Consequences- Make this wheel to find out the consequences for various actions.
Choose the Right- Find the matching pictures.
Choose the Right Way- A maze which shows how we feel when we make certain choices.
CTR Game- A memory game
Always Choose the Right- CTR rings to hide- have the class do it for their families or do it beforehand- even try hiding them around the classroom.
Choose the Right Way and Be Happy- Coloring page where you are supposed to write ways to choose the right in the balloons. However, you could use the pictures from the CTR game and glue them inside the balloons instead.
Do What is Right- Learn how to say Choose the Right in different languages.
Agency is the Gift to Choose for Ourselves- Roll the dice and answer the questions
Living the Gospel Blesses My Family- Match the footprints- blessings to which action
I Can Follow Jesus Christ's Example- Visual pathway and journaling activity
All Aboard the Friend Ship- Game to play as you assemble the ship
A Big Helper- How many ways can you help Carlos?
Fun Service- Find two pictures that look the same (it's after the story)
Help Ellie Find Jacob- Simple maze
Helping a Neighbor- Put the cards in the right sequence
An Important Lesson- Discover the answer or find all the silly tools
The Magical Marvelous Magnificent Club- Play to act out
Serving Like Christ- Word search
Singing Service- Decode the answer
Three Meanings of Love (scroll down)
Child of God
A Child of God- Finish the faces (a boy and a girl)
Heavenly Father Loves Me- Scroll down and cut these snowflakes out before class then decorate them in class
Know Who You Are- Make stick puppets with these faces and do some fun small skits or sayings as each child holds one
I am a Child of God- Frame with pictures to cut out and glue around it. I like the concept but think it would be annoying to cut out all the pictures- stickers would be great though!
We Are All Children of God- Find the matching pictures and talk about even though we are all different, we are all still children of God
I am a Child of God- This is supposed to be a yearly advent but it would be fun to do just like a puzzle- read the scriptures with it or pull things from the lesson to put it together.
I am a Child of God- A box to put together- I'd skip the scripture part for this age but I'm sure you could have fun with the box still- roll it like a dice and talk about each scene.