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FHE: Saved by the Scriptures

Conference Talk:
For more information on this topic read “The Power of Deliverance,” by Elder L. Tom
Perry, Ensign, May 2011, 55.

Thought:
We can be delivered from the ways of evil and wickedness by turning to the teachings of the holy scriptures.

(L. Tom Perry, “The Power of Deliverance,” Ensign, May 2012, 94).

Song:
“As I Search the Holy Scriptures,” Hymns #277.

Scripture:
Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.

(John 5:39)

Object Lesson:
Have a family member read aloud John 5:39.

Ask:

• Why does Jesus say we should “search the scriptures”?
• How can we make scripture study more meaningful?
• What is the difference between searching the scriptures and just reading them?
• What might the Jewish leaders have understood if they had searched and believed the
scriptures?

Ask another family member to read aloud John 5:28–29 and explain it as best they can.
Have another family member read Doctrine and Covenants 76:15–21. Ask, What knowledge and understanding have we been blessed with because Joseph Smith searched John 5:29? Invite family members to share how they have been strengthened by searching the scriptures.

(Dennis H. Leavitt and Richard O. Christensen, Scripture Study for Latter-day Saint Families: The New Testament, [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 2006], p. 120.)

Story:
I went through an interesting exercise when I lost my scriptures on February 7, 1991. I wasn’t too concerned right at first. When I realized at my office that they were missing, I knew they must be at home, or in the car, or in Salt Lake City at the Relief Society Building. I knew I would get them back. My name was in them. When I said to someone, “I lost my scriptures,” they’d ask, “Well, where did you put them?” If I knew where I had put them they wouldn’t be lost, but people still asked that question.

The last time I remembered having them was after a meeting at the Relief Society Building. My hands were full, and I stuck the scriptures, in their plastic holder-with-a-handle, on the top of the car. So I got thinking perhaps I had left them there. Agh!

Anyway, it was a few days before I became concerned. Then I slowly realized that my scriptures weren’t in any of the places where I thought they might be. Still I remained somewhat calm. Surely they would come back. Someone would find them and see my name and address and get in touch. Each time I drove to or from the Relief Society Building I looked carefully, going the same way I always went. I didn’t want them to be in a ditch or alongside the road somewhere.

My next step was to imagine that, yes, someone had found my scriptures, and they were reading them, and they were in the process of conversion, and when they were ready to be baptized, they would get in touch, and it would be a fabulous story with an incredibly happy ending. Yes, that was what was happening. My scriptures were busy doing their thing.

But I missed them. I hadn’t realized how much I liked them, that one particular set. . . . [They] had been on a couple of missions with me. They had been to Asia and Africa. They smelled like mold, and it made me homesick and nostalgic whenever I caught their scent. I missed all the things I had written in the margins. I missed the way they seemed to pop open to just what I needed.

Of course I prayed for those scriptures. I wasn’t demanding or anything. I just let Heavenly Father know that I missed my scriptures and would sure love to get them back. And although I probably didn’t exactly say, “Thy will be done,” I did say, “If it’s possible” or “If it’s a good idea” or “If it would be okay.” Of course, I couldn’t imagine a single reason why it wouldn’t be a wonderful idea for me to get them back.

Days passed and then weeks. General conference was getting closer, and I still had not found my scriptures. Eventually it was as if the still small voice said something to me like, “Edmunds, get a grip. They’re gone. You’ve got to get some more.” And so I did. Shortly before conference I bought a whole set. I tried to like them—not very hard, but I did try. They weren’t user friendly. They wouldn’t pop open to the right place. They didn’t smell like mold. Nothing was written in the margins. And for some reason I didn’t write my name in them. Not yet. I did take them to conference and other places with me. I tried to bond with them. It wasn’t working.

A few days after conference, when my real scriptures had been gone two months, I had a feeling that I wanted to pray about them again. I hadn’t mentioned them in several weeks because I didn’t want to be too pushy. But on an evening in April when I knelt to pray I included something about my scriptures. I said to Heavenly Father, “I know You can see them.” I knew He knew where they were.

I didn’t say it like, “So why haven’t You brought them back?” It was just something I knew. And I asked for the last time about getting them back. He knew it was the last time. I mentioned how much I had missed them and how I hadn’t realized how much that particular set meant to me. I thanked Him for not being mad at me for bringing it up again and told Him I would let go if for some reason they couldn’t come back. I wouldn’t bother Him again about that particular subject.

The next morning I got to the Missionary Training Center early. Since the door near my office was locked, I walked through the lobby. I decided to check my mailbox while I was so near the front desk. In it was a green slip, one of those forms that says “An item for you that would not fit in your mailbox has been placed above the mailboxes. The item is . . .” The blank was filled in with red pen: “your scriptures.” What?

I looked up, and sure enough, there they were. No plastic cover, but I recognized them instantly.

I grabbed them and ran down the hall to my office. I hardly had time to shut and lock the door before I started crying—hard. I knelt and thanked Heavenly Father for answering my prayers. Imagine how Heavenly Father can look down on all His billions of children and pick us out, one by one, knowing our names and our needs, and responding in such unusual (sometimes we say “mysterious” when we don’t comprehend the particulars), specific, remarkable, miraculous ways. I keep the green slip inside my scriptures (it now smells a little like mold too) and it reminds me of many things but mostly of how loving and patient and merciful God is with us and how well He knows each of us.
Incidentally, my dear friend Subandriyo (we call him Yoyo) from Indonesia happened to be at general conference that year. When I saw him after I had found my scriptures, I asked if he had a set in English. He said no, but he surely would like one someday. Not all the books have been translated into Indonesian, and he enjoys things like the Topical Guide. I told him about my experience and gave him my newly purchased scriptures, saying how nice it was that I would just happen to have an extra set. He smiled as only he can and said, “Oh, Sister, the Lord works in mysterious ways. He knew that Yoyo needed some English scriptures.” Yes, He did.

(Mary Ellen Edmunds, Love Is a Verb, [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1993], p. 50-4.)

Activity:
Have each family member look up one of their favorite scriptures. Take turns reading them aloud and explaining why you like that particular scripture.
Refreshment
Peanut Butter Yummies

1 cup sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
1 cup peanut butter
21⁄2 cups Rice Chex® cereal 21⁄2 cups Rice Krispies® cereal

Combine the sugar and Corn syrup in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring often. Maintain a rolling boil for about 1 minute. Remove from heat. Add the peanut butter to the hot syrup and stir until thoroughly mixed. Combine cereals in a large bowl. Pour hot peanut butter syrup over the cereals and stir with a large wooden spoon. Spoon cookie-sized amounts onto waxed paper and let cool before serving.

Makes 2 dozen.

(Jill McKenzie, 52 Weeks of Proven Recipes for Picky Kids, [Salt Lake City: Shadow Mountain, 2008], p. 57.)

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