"Wounded" by Elder Neil L. Andersen Discussion Helps

“Wounded” by Elder Neil L. Anderson is a great reminder that while trials happen, they are a part of the plan. They aren’t to punish us but to teach us. Which words particularly stuck out to you?

 
 

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints suggests the following when teaching from this talk:

“To introduce Elder Andersen’s message, you could read together Luke 10:30–35 or watch the video “Parable of the Good Samaritan” (LDS.org). How are we all like the man who fell among thieves? According to Elder Andersen, in what sense is Jesus Christ ‘our Good Samaritan’? How can we accept His healing? Perhaps you could invite members to share ways in which the Savior has healed their wounds or the wounds of loved ones. They could also search Elder Andersen’s words to find an encouraging message that they could share with someone who is wounded.”


Questions to Ponder

  • How have you seen or felt the Savior in the life altering moments of your life? What did you do to prepare yourself so you could feel the Savior instead of the fear?

  • Why do you think it important to share our trials and not suffer alone? Who can you share your trials with? If you feel like you don’t have someone to share with, how can you build your relationships so you can?

  • How does it make you feel to know, “This is Mortality”? How does understanding this part of the Plan of Salvation help you?

  • How does it make you feel to know that the “sun riseth on the evil and on the good”? Why do you think this is? What does it teach us?

  • “How can painful wounds be for our good?” How have you seen this in your life or the lives of others?

  • How can repentance help heal spiritual as well as physical wounds?

  • What role does hope play in the trials of mortal life? How do we increase our hope?

  • How is it possible to help the wounded even when you yourself are wounded? How does helping others who are wounded help you heal? How have you seen this in your life?

  • How does knowing we are here to be tried and tested help us pass the tests of life? When you remember this, how does it change the way you approach each day?

  • How can we learn and grow through others’ wounds?

  • Why did the resurrected Savior retain his wounds? Why does that matter to you?

  • What role does forgiveness play in healing our wounds?

  • Does crying and sorrowing mean we lack faith? What role does mourning play in healing from our wounds?

  • How have you seen Christ be your Good Samaritan?

  • Why is it helpful to understand that adversity is part of God's plan for our eternal progress? Why do you think adversity is necessary?

  • How do you change your perspective of adversity to the Lord's eternal view?

  • Why do you have a reason to happy and optimistic even during life's difficulties? What can you do to develop greater optimism?

  • What are some blessings you can still have during severe adversity?

  • How can you accept the Savior's invitation to let Him carry your burdens and lighten your load?

  • In what ways is living of life by fear harmful? How do you live a life with hope and faith instead of fear? How does Satan use fear as a tool?

  • In what ways have you allowed Christ to lighten your load this week?

  • Think about to past difficulties you have overcome. What things did you learn? How were you blessed? Did you turn to the Savior during these times? If so, how? How did help?

  • What happens when you ask "Why me?" instead of facing the challenges with faith?

  • How can you overcome pessimism? Why should we not have an excuse for it in our lives?

  • What allows you to live your life despite the turmoils of the world?

  • In what ways does adversity open the door to greater happiness?


Discussion Ideas

These are my ideas. My hope is reading my thoughts will be a springboard to finding the right plans for your class.

  • Invite a class member in a medical field to come demonstrate a few simple first aid techniques. Relate this to how the Savior heals our wounds. What are the similarities can your class drawn upon?

  • Play or have the class sing Hymn #115, “Come, Ye Disconsolate.” Ask your class to write down how they feel as they listen. Invite any to share their experience.

  • Make 3 sections on the board labeled: Premortal Life, Earth Life, and Postmortal Life. Write in each section what we know that can help us navigate and heal our wounds.


  • “You are exhausted, but don’t ever give up.” This can be an encouraging mantra to help get through hard times. Search the gospel library to find other such comforting words. Pass out cards so that class members can write their favorites and display them in a prominent place in their home.

  • Read 3 Nephi 11 about Christ appearing to the Nephites. Why did the resurrected Savior retain his wounds? How does it make you feel to know that he suffered for us?

  • Use the example of a marble slab. An artist takes this chunk of rock and turns it into a beautiful sculpture. Sometimes big pieces must fall off and other times he focuses on one particular area as several small slivers are scraped off. While this may hurt in the process, in the end the Lord makes us something beautiful. You can demonstrate this with a figurine inside some Play-doh or freeze a toy in water. Baking is another great example of that fire. For example, brownie batter is good but it becomes even better after you cook it. You may want to use a microwavable recipe to quickly illustrate this idea (and share at the end).

  • Share the stories in Elder Andersen’s talk or another one from the scriptures such as the people of Alma in Helam had their burdens made light while the Lamanites persecuted them (See Mosiah 23 and 24). There is also the example of Joseph Smith seeking to get the Book of Mormon published. It took him five times to find the right publisher! I love this example because Joseph was on a mission from God. God wanted him to share the Book of Mormon with the world. However, Joseph still experienced opposition. What do we learn from these examples of opposition? What have we learned as we have discovered opposition in our own lives? I love Elder Dale G. Renlund’s example he shared on Facebook in 2018 as well. Some questions he mentioned would be great to discuss as a class too: “Should I have assumed that the problems were evidence that I shouldn’t go? Should I think that this was Satan working against me? When life gets hard, at what point are we justified in giving up?”

  • Use the same stories mentioned in the previous bullet point but start at the end and focus on the blessings of the challenge first. Then go back and talk about all the things that had to happen in order to obtain those blessings- the difficulties, obstacles, etc. Show how those trials made it possible for the growth.

  • What are some other things that require resistance in order to work properly? Kites, airplanes, windmills, pulleys, levers, etc. Bring in the item if you can and talk about how it works. What would happen without that resistance?

  • Discuss the same challenge from 2 different perspective- the Why me? perspective versus the What can I do about it? How can I overcome it? What can I learn from it? Show the significant difference and change that happens. You may want to show the video, When Bad Things Happen (about 2 minutes) or another on about adversity on that page.