Teaching Ideas for "Abiding in God and Repairing the Breach" by Sister Neill F. Marriott

Sister Neill F. Marriott gave a talk in the October 2017 General Conference entitled, "Abiding in God and Repairing the Breach." In it she encourages us to learn about Heavenly Father, humble ourselves, and grow in obedience to Him. 

 
 

I appreciate her personal example of a breach between her and family member. I believe most of us have been in a similar situation where it was hard to love someone. However, with God's help we can over come those feelings and learn to love all.


Questions

  • Are our trials dragging us further away or pushing us closer to God?
  • What matters to you?
  • How can you change selfishness into service, fear into faith?
  • When has your life not gone as planned but far far better because it was God's plan for you?
  • How do we draw near to the Lord? How does He draw near to us?
  • In what ways does fasting repair the breach?
  • How can we improve our relationships with others (especially family) and love more freely?
  • "Do we trust Him enough to abide in Him and walk with Him?"
  • How can you repair the breach between you and God?

Teaching Ideas

From the Church, "This message can help members who may feel separated from Heavenly Father or from those around them. What would help those you teach understand what a breach is? Maybe you could bring pictures of different kinds of breaches. How does Sister Marriott define breach? What can cause breaches in our relationships with God and others? Invite members to search Sister Marriott’s message for suggestions about what we can do to repair breaches in our lives. Give members time to write down what the Spirit prompts them to do to draw closer to God and others."

These are my ideas. My hope is that reading my thoughts will be a springboard to finding the right plans for your class. Remember you are leading a discussion, not teaching a lesson so you may only need one of these ideas.

  • Use her example of a dirty pitcher as an object lesson. You can either use some bleach water to easily clean the pitcher OR ask someone to clean it but don't give them a cloth or anything to use until after you discuss how the Atonement of Jesus Christ is necessary.
  • What do you know about God? You can make a list on the board, give people time to write about it on a piece of paper, or head to the Topical Guide and give groups specific scriptures to study and share what they know about God from it. 
  • Use a chart on the board to document what God and Christ have done for our growth, for our salvation, and for our blessings as Sister Marriott points out. 
  • Use my free handout to take time to ponder what matters and our goals for those things. 
  • Demonstrate our reactions to tough situations with a rope tied to something. When the going gets tough, do we hold on tighter and closer or do we let go or leave more slack? What would actually be easier when it comes to a rope and carrying something heavy?
  • As you discuss what repairs the breach, you can build a bridge with blocks to represent the different ways it can be done.
  • Use the classic mother-in-law example of having a relationship with a breach. How can we overcome our differences and build a bridge? How can God help us?
  • Ask those that participated in some of the Church's teachings or campaigns that focus on service (like #LIGHTtheWORLD) to share ways their selfishness changed to service. 
  • Use one of the free Fear Not coloring pages as you discuss changing our fear into faith.