This is the last lesson I taught the young women of my ward. I’m moving to a new state, and this was my last week. It is a little sad, but I was happy to teach. My favorite thing about serving in the Young Women’s has been teaching on Sundays.
The objective of lesson 1-10 is: Each young woman will learn how to support and be loyal to her family.
As I think about this – I know that in some ways I may not be the best to teach it. I mean, I love my family, but I don’t have the best relationships with them. I know that I have a lot of room to grow. I realized that, as usual, I’d learn more from the lesson than I could possibly teach the Young Women. Amazing how it always happens that way.
I didn’t really follow the lesson plan as outlined. Here is an idea of what I did – in case it helps you.
I began with a similar introduction. Instead of asking the young women to think about a time when they were ignored or felt like a friend wasn’t listening, we did a little bit of an object lesson/role play. I had one girl start talking to another. After a few seconds, a third young woman interrupted them. The first girl then ignored the young woman who was talking to her and only paid attention to the young woman who had interrupted them.
They got frustrated, it was funny, and we had a good time.
We talked about the situation. I asked the young woman, who had been ignored, how she felt about being ignored. The reaction was obvious.
I related – talking to a person on the phone when you know that they are watching T.V. or are on the computer. We all agreed: we hate that! Then, we talked about what we would like instead. We came to the conclusion: in our relationships, we want approval, support, loyalty, and encouragement.
After that, I brought up the fact that these qualities – (approval, support, loyalty, and encouragement) should also be in our family relationships. Unfortunately, we don’t always work hard to show proper respect and love to our family members. Because of this, our relationships with them often suffer.
“Therefore, strengthen your brethren in all your conversation, in all your prayers, in all your exhortations, and in all your doings.” – Doctrine and Covenants 108:7
Consider asking the following questions:
- Who are our brethren?
- What do you think that it means to strengthen them?
- In what ways should we strengthen our brothers, sisters, and parents?
- What do you think that the outcome would be if we did this?
It sounds strange, but I then encouraged them to be mindful of applying this lesson before I even finished it. We read the following Value Experience from Personal Progress
“Make your home life better. For two weeks make a special effort to strengthen your relationship with a family member by showing love through your actions. Refrain from judging, criticizing, or speaking unkindly, and watch for positive qualities in that family member. Write notes of encouragement, pray for this family member, find ways to be helpful, and verbally express your love. Share your experiences and the divine qualities you’ve discovered with that family member or with a parent or leader.” – Divine Nature Value Experience 3
Explain that you are about to watch two videos. You will discuss them after, but as you watch them, think about the relationships you have in your families. Let the Spirit guide you to know which family member you should pick to complete this goal.
After you have explained what they should be mindful of, show the first video:
After the video, discuss it a little bit with the young women. When we talked about it today, I felt impressed to mention the following:
- They were both unhappy with the relationship at first.
- Even though Dylan was the son, he took initiative to make the relationship better.
- Dylan listened to the prophets, and applied their teachings to his life.
- I explained to the young women that we, parents, aren’t perfect. We get scared. We want the approval of our children, and sometimes don’t know how to go about it. If they make the first move, they may find that the relatinoship improves. Often, children teach their parents.
- I also let them know that even if their parents don’t respond to their efforts, they shouldn’t give up. They will need to pray, and the Lord will bless them for their efforts – even if their parents never appreciate the work they put into it.
After discussing this video, show the following video.
Discuss this video with them, too.
A few things I felt impressed by:
- Neither brother was happy about the relationship at first.
- Luke felt like there was no hope in his relationship with Sam.
- They worked together on the Student council campaign.
- Sam let his guard down – let Luke know about his depression.
- Luke made a sacrifice for his brother – dressed like a Bee and danced in front of the whole school!
- As Sam changed himself, this enabled him to change his relationship with his brother.
- Because Luke was understanding, he was able to build a relationship with Sam.
Follow the Spirit, of course, and encourage the young women to share their reactions and feelings. Help them to see how each relationship was healed. Also, if you find appropriate experiences to share, share them. You may invite a young women to share an appropriate experience. I’m sure that the Spirit will guide you as you teach.
I closed the lesson with the quote given in the book:
“Be one who nurtures and builds. Be one who has an understanding and a forgiving heart, who looks for the best in people. Leave people better than you found them.” – Marvin J. Ashton
Close with your testimony and with encouragement – for the young women to find a relationship that they can strengthen in their family. Testify of the love we can have in our lives as we strive to strengthen and develop better relationship with our brothers, sisters, and parents.