Friday, October 18, 2013

Developing Christlike Attributes Lesson

This lesson is based on this lesson from the Come Follow Me youth curriculum and the activity is based on pages 115-126  in the Preach My Gospel manual.  I used it in a YW lesson I recently taught and felt like the girls really connected with the concept of it and the visual nature of the lesson.  There is a fair amount of writing required for this lesson, but it could also be easily  used for a FHE lesson for school age children, teens, or adults.  I believe that the success of this lesson depends on them following through with the goals they set and as such  I encouraged everyone to tape their page into their journals and refer back to it often.

Scroll to the bottom of the post to get to the printable version of the lesson, including pictures.  If you prefer only the lesson without pictures, click here.

Overcoming Weaknesses and Developing Christlike Attributes

Materials Needed:  picture of Christ (see below), one copy of activity per person(see below), colored pens or pencils for everyone, pictures of branch and hole on roof (optional)

"I'm Trying to be Like Jesus," page 78 of Children's Songbook
"Be Thou Humble," page 130 of the Hymn book

HOLE IN ROOF STORY:    (use our real life story or tell your own) 
Tell a story (with included pictures if desired) of a house that has a branch fall on their roof during a storm.  It's not a particularly large branch and it doesn't appeared to have caused any damage.  

But the next time it rains, water starts pouring through their roof, soaking the insulation in the attic, and pouring water into their dining room.  Although the branch didn't seem likely to have done much damage at first glance, unbeknownst  to the owners it had weakened the defenses of their roof enough allow the elements in and cause much greater damage than just a small hole in the roof.   

RELATE:   That like that little branch on the roof,  our little sins can become holes of weakness in our defenses against the “rains and storms of life”.    Talk about how once the roof was repaired, it became a strong point in our roof.   We can do the same with our "little" sins and weaknesses....we can fortify ourselves and diligently work to overcome them and they, like the repaired roof, can actually become our strengths.  

READ ETHER 12:27:  briefly discuss why we have been given weaknesses and how God will strengthen us as we strive to overcome them.

SHOW picture of Christ (see below) and talk about how God is always there to lift us up and to help us in our day-to-day struggles.  


1.  Pass out the activity sheets and multicolored pens and pencils.  

2.  Start off by pointing to  THE GIRL ON THE LEFT SIDE OF THE PAPER.  Explain that she is to represent each of them personally during this lesson.  Encourage everyone to think of potential little “branches” of weaknesses in their lives  and to write at least 5-6 things surrounding the girl on the paper (encourage them to make it colorful) .  Some examples of things they could write:  Not studying the scriptures as diligently as they should, an ongoing irritation at a sibling, or how they're treating their parents, forgetting to say their prayers, etc.   
3.  Refer briefly back to Ether 12:27 and talk about how we are now going to talk about a way that we can start making those weaknesses into strengths.

4.  Point out the scriptures that are listed around the edge of the paper.  Have them look up a few of the  scriptures  and each think of a couple attributes of Christ.  

5.  Go around the room and have each person share a couple of attributes of Christ that they have found (or thought of on their own.)

6.  HAVE THEM WRITE DOWN THE ATTRIBUTES all around the drawing of Christ on the right side of the paper.  
7.  Have them circle/highlight ONE weakness they'd like to overcome and/or one attribute of Christ that they would like to start working on developing.

8.  HURDLES – along the vertical line that goes down the center of the page, have them write down a couple of the challenges they will  face in developing that attribute.  Have them be very specific....  These hurdles could include  fatigue, lack of time, not feeling motivated, etc.

9.  In the LARGE ARROWS in the middle of the page, read the scriptures and then write 3 specific ways that they can work on overcoming those hurdles and  start developing that attribute in to make it a strength instead of a weakness.

These should be very SPECIFIC ideas.  Not just I will read the scriptures more often.  But 3 specific and measurable ways that they can improve themselves:  (see example)
1.  I will read at least one page every night before supper.  
2.  If I am not home at supper, I will read it before bed.  
3.  I will place my scriptures on my pillow each morning to help me not to forget.   
10.  At this point their paper should be very colorful and filled with personal and meaningful instructions for developing a Christlike attribute.    Refer once more back to the story of the repaired roof and remind them this activity was their own personal instruction for fortifying the weaknesses in the roofs in their lives.   Encourage them to tape the sheets into their journals and to refer back to them often for encouragement in their quest.  Also encourage them to reread the scriptures and repeat the activity frequently.  

11.  PAPER AIRPLANE—drop an unfolded sheet of paper and point out how it flutters without direction or purpose.  Then, as you fold a piece of paper into an airplane, remind them that changing can sometimes be painful, but when we make the effort and allow ourselves to be pliable enough to be folded and changed, we can make weak things become strong and have enough wind beneath our wings to fly.  Throw the plane and point out the difference now that it has direction and purpose.


REFRESHMENTS:  Homemade Twix Bars