I taught this lesson yesterday, and it went really well. I loved the idea behind it – being optimistic. I think that this is a very important quality, and I found that I needed to learn a lot from what I was teaching.
I followed the purpose and basic points given in the lesson manual at lds.org, but, as usual, I ended up tweaking my own lesson a little bit.
At the beginning of the lesson, we did an Object lesson – where the young women had a candy in their mouth and a rock in their shoe. I made sure that they walked somewhere – and then they “talked” about their experience. For the most part, the young women talked about the rock. I told them that often, in life, we focus more on what’s wrong than what’s good (the candy). This nicely introduced the idea of optimism.
Instead of relating stories and case studies – which I have no problem with – I wanted to have the Young Women to have an experience with the scriptures. I feel – so strongly – that we can learn the best when we go to the source.
So – we spent most of our time discussing the stories of the People of Limhi (son of King Noah) and the People of Alma (the elder). They were both in bondage to the Nephites. They both eventually escaped. However, each group had drastically different attitudes about their bondage.
During the first part of the discussion, I wrote a few notes on the board:
Bondage → Complaining and Murmuring → heavier bondage/ slavery → Anger → War → Lost many lives → mourning → complaining → anger and second war → lost more lives → mourning → anger and third war → Lost even more lives.
With this written out on the board, it became so obvious that the people of Limhi weren’t taking the right approach – their bad attitude caused them to keep repeating the same mistake over and over again.
This behavior was a stark contrast of the behavior of the people of Alma. We talked about the people of Alma, and discussed why they thought that their positive attitude probably helped them in their time of trial.
While studying the group of Alma, we discussed, how we can “cheerfully submit to all the will of God.” – In this part, I drew heavily from the lesson manual and from Elder Wirthlin’s talk – Come what May and Love it.
If you would like to check out the full lesson plan I made, you can look at it here.
The lesson went really well. We spent the entire time in the scriptures. The young women were very interested, and could easily see the problem with having a bad attitude. We were also able to have a good discussion that bridged the gap of thousands of years – the young women were able to see how we could apply the habit of a good attitude in their own lives – even if it is hard.
So – good luck with your lesson! If you have any kind of input, let me know!