By: Erin Campbell
This week for FHE we focused on the story found in 1 Samuel chapter 3. My children had never heard this story before, and it had been a long time since I recall hearing it. Let me give you a quick summary of the story.
Samuel would often go to the Temple to help a man named Eli. Eli didn’t know that his sons were stealing money from the temple offerings. People complained to Eli. But he did not punish his sons. One night Samuel heard a voice calling him. He thought it was Eli and so he went to him. It wasn't him and Eli sent him back to bed. The same thing happened a second and a third time. The third time Eli told Samuel that it was the Lord and that he should listen. The next time it happened Samuel listened and the Lord told him it was wrong for Eli to allow his wicked sons to work in the temple. Then next day Samuel told Eli what the Lord said. Eli knew what he was saying was true. The story was told throughout the land and the people knew that Samuel was to be their next leader.
After talking about what happened to Samuel, we talked about one of our close Family Friends. Uncle Bill and how he had a similar experience. A few years ago while we were on our way to visit Bill my Father told me and my oldest kids Bill's amazing Faith Filled story….. and it seemed to be just like Samuels. I happened to be sitting in the front seat and so I recorded his story. Click the video below to hear the story.
After we talked about these experiences we discussed how usually we will not hear the Lords Voice. Those seemed to be extreme situations. I did let my kids know that perhaps it could happen to them one day, however usually the day to day promptings that we feel are more common. We talked about the ways that we can Hear Him daily.
-Often times we might pray for something specific and we will get the answer from a friend, or someone we come in contact with.
-Or maybe we are listening to good music and we can Hear Him whisper words of encouragement, as we enjoy the sweet melodies that connect to our spirit.
-We might open the scriptures and randomly find the answer to a question that has been lingering in our hearts.
-At times people receive insight and direction when they attend the temple. It seems our thoughts are elevated when we are able to spend time in the house of the Lord.
-Listening to Conference Talks is a great way to find answers, and guidance.
-Sometimes it's just a feeling, a prompting.
During FHE we discussed the various ways that we can feel the spirit but ultimately we wanted our children to understand that it is different for everyone. That the more they try to Hear Him, the better they will get at it. Really the way He speaks to us all is uniquely designed for each of us, so that we will understand in the way that he needs us to. We all learn differently, so it only makes sense that we all Hear Him differently too.
Afterwards we played a game where all the kids sat on the couch and closed their eyes. I explained that usually if we want to Hear Him we need to be in a quiet place. A place where the spirit can dwell. As they sat quietly I made sounds with different items and they had to listen closely to hear what object it was. I first crumpled a bag of chips, then used scissors, turned on the faucet, ignited a lighter, and with each noise they would raise their hand with excitement. They were pretty good at listening and eventually they wanted to give it a try. So of course they each got a turn. At one point my daughter was walking toward the fan and was just about to turn it on when my son yelled out “The Fan”....she was quite disappointed because she didn’t even get a chance to turn it on before he guessed the right answer. This was a great teaching moment for me and for them. I stopped the game and explained that sometimes we ask the Lord questions that we already know the answer to. Just like Tama heard Aiyanna walking towards the fan, sometimes we already know the answer the Lord is going to give us because we understand who he is and what he values most.
I then gave them is example: If I prayed to the Lord and told him I was conflicted because I had two activities to go to at the same time, and I didn’t know how to choose between the two. One is a Party where there will be drinking and smoking and one is church activity with the youth. Which one do you think he would choose for me to go to? This is the perfect example of knowing and understanding our Heavenly Father and his will. We know right from wrong, and he would always want us to be surrounded by people who are trying to choose the right. He of course gives us our agency and lets us make the choice for ourselves but we know deep down which choice he would make for us if he could.
In the end the kids loved this game so much that they all took two or three turns making sounds. It was a great reminder that we need to listen for the Holy Ghost in our own life as much as possible. He has promised us that he will tell us all things what we should do. We simply have to put in the effort to Hear Him.
Moroni 10: 5-6 And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things. And whatsoever thing is good is just and true; wherefore, nothing that is good denieth the Christ, but acknowledgeth that he is.
Below is a link to a video on Samuel that you can watch with your kids if you want to use this lesson with your own family, along with some extra links on the topic Hear Him from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
Hope you have a great week.
Samuel The Prophet:
Talk By Russell M. Nelson
Videos: Hear Him
Russle M. Nelson: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sGhQym_vhFU
President Eyring: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PcmxVT8goMc