Purpose: To help family members learn that God answers prayers and to help build personal testimonies of Joseph Smith as a prophet of God
Gospel Principles: Prayer, revelation, and personal testimony
Scripture: JS—H 1:10–17
Music: “Joseph Smith’s First Prayer” (Hymns, no. 26), “The Sacred Grove” (CS, 87)
When he was fourteen years old, Joseph Smith witnessed a religious revival in the area where his family lived. Many Christian preachers taught things that seemed to conflict, which was very confusing to Joseph. Because of his confusion, Joseph wanted to know which church was right and which church he should join. As he searched for answers, he opened the Bible to James 1:5, where he read, “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.” This verse struck him with great force and he decided to pray to God to ask which of the many churches he should join. In a grove of trees near his home, where he could speak privately in prayer, Joseph knelt to ask God. While praying, a pillar of light descended upon him. ”When the light rested upon me I saw two Personages, whose brightness and glory defy all description, standing above me in the air. One of them spake unto me, calling me by name and said, pointing to the other ‘This is My Beloved Son. Hear Him!’” (JS–H 1:17).
1. Print a copy of the PDF “First Vision Crossword Puzzle.” Work on the puzzle as a family to review the lesson concepts.
2. For younger children, use finger puppets or the flannel board illustrations published in the March 2008 Friend and have the children take turns retelling the story of the First Vision.
3. For older children, complete the crossword puzzle together; have family members take turns providing answers to each clue.
Illustrations of the First Vision are included in the Gospel Art Kit (Church History pictures 402 and 403). “The Restoration” DVD (2005, 54742091) is an excellent and easy way to teach family members about the First Vision.
All lessons are excerpted fromthe new book Follow the Prophets: 52 FHE Lessons from Latter-day Prophets.