FHE: Hope

Conference Talk:

For more information on this topic read "The Infinite Power of Hope," by Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Ensign, Nov 2008, 21-24.

Thought:

We learn to cultivate hope the same way we learn to walk, one step at a time.

(Dieter F. Uchtdorf, "The Infinite Power of Hope," Ensign, Nov 2008, 21-24.)

Song: "Hope of Israel," Hymns, #259

Scripture:

Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the Lord his God. (Psalms 146:5)

Lesson and Activity:

Read Ether 12:29 together and have family members identify the three important attributes Moroni writes about. (Faith, hope, and charity.) Ask how hope can bring us to Christ.

Tell your family you are going to play a game called "Seek." Tell them that the object of the game is to be able to find a picture of Jesus within a certain time, and if they do they will get a treat. Ask for a volunteer to leave the room momentarily. While the family member is out of the room, hide a picture of the Savior. Invite the family member back into the room and let him or her begin searching. If the person has difficulty finding the picture, the rest of the family can help by saying "warmer" when the one seeking the picture is moving closer to it and by saying "colder" when the person is moving farther away from the picture. When the person has found the picture, give him or her a treat or reward. You could have several family members take a turn being the one trying to find the picture.

Explain to your family that by seeking Christ we can gain hope, because he is the reason for our hope. Only through Christ's atonement can we return to our Father in Heaven.

(Dennis H. Leavitt and Richard O. Christensen, Scripture Study for Latter-day Saint Families: The Book of Mormon, [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2003], p. 351.)

Story:

Hope for a Discouraged Missionary

As a mission president, I was afforded the privilege of guiding the activities of precious young men and women, missionaries whom the Lord had called. Some had problems, others required motivation; but one came to me in utter despair. He had made his decision to leave the mission field when but at the halfway mark. His bags were packed, his return ticket purchased. He came by to bid me farewell. We talked; we listened; we prayed. There remained hidden the actual reason for his decision to quit.

As we arose from our knees in the quiet of my office, the missionary began to weep almost uncontrollably. Flexing the muscle of his strong right arm, he blurted out, "This is my problem. All through school my muscle power qualified me for honors in football and track, but my mental power was neglected. President Monson, I'm ashamed of my school record. It reveals that 'with effort' I have the capacity to read at but the level of the fourth grade. I can't even read the Book of Mormon. How then can I understand its contents and teach others its truths?"

The silence of the room was broken by my nine-year-old son who, without knocking, opened the door and, with surprise, apologetically said, "Excuse me. I just wanted to put this book back on the shelf."

He handed me the book. Its title: A Child's Story of the Book of Mormon, by Deta Petersen Neeley. I turned to the preface and read that the book had been written with a carefully selected vocabulary on a fourth-grade level. A sincere prayer from an honest heart had been dramatically answered. My missionary accepted the challenge to read the book. Half laughing, half crying, he declared: "It will be good to read something I can understand."

Clouds of despair were dispelled by the sunshine of hope. He completed an honorable mission, is now married for eternity to a choice companion, and has children of his own. His life is a testimony of the nearness of our Father and the availability of His help.

(Thomas S. Monson, Inspiring Experiences That Build Faith: From the Life and Ministry of Thomas S. Monson, [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1994].)

Refreshment

Cox Honey Cookies

  • 1 1/2 cups shortening
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 4 cups flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 teaspoons cinnamon
In a large mixing bowl, cream shortening, 2 cups sugar, eggs, and honey. Sift together flour, salt, baking soda, and baking powder. Stir into creamed mixture. Combine H cup sugar and 3 teaspoons cinnamon. Form heaping teaspoonfuls of dough into balls, and roll each ball in sugar/cinnamon mixture. Place balls on a greased cookie sheet. Bake at 325 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes, or until lightly browned. Do not overbake. Makes 3 dozen cookies.

(Paula Julander and Joanne Milner, Utah State Fare, [Salt Lake City: Shadow Mountain, 1995] p. 21.)

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