Family Fireside Chat about Ministering – a complete lesson plan. Use this simple object lesson to teach your family the important newly-emphasized gospel principle of ministering with a fun chat around the campfire. You can give this lesson during a regular Monday evening Family Home Evening. Or, take the opportunity while you are camping or sitting around the backyard fire pit to teach a gospel lesson in an informal setting. Family fireside chat conversations are some of my favorite memories as a kid. The peaceful beautiful setting is perfect for inviting the Spirit.
FHE Lesson: Family Fireside Chat on Ministering
Ministering has always been a part of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Jesus, as our perfect example, was a friend to all. He was inclusive and spent time to reach out specifically to individuals that needed love and care. He was a minster. He took good care of his friends and family. We can become more like him, as we learn how to minister as he did.
What is ministering? Recently, the LDS church has introduced a ministering initiative. It has taken the place of the previous Home Teaching and Visiting Teaching programs. Ministering is a more holy level of service. It involves Christlike caring for others. Because each person on this Earth is unique and everybody has personal trials, ministering allows members of the church to reach out and help with individual needs. It is true friendship. Proper ministering draws people into the fold of the Gospel and helps them to feel God’s love in their lives.
Ask the Question: Who can be a minister?
Everyone can help in the ministering efforts of the Church! If you have the capacity to love, you can serve. Officially, Laurels and Priests are included in the call. But, that does not mean families cannot get involved and serve together. The youngest members of the church are able to share their light in a special way. Relief Society General President Sister Bingham said, “Youth can share their unique gifts and grow spiritually as they serve alongside adults in the work of salvation.” Involving youth also increases the number of members caring for others, and helps the youth “better prepare to fulfill their roles as leaders in the Church and community and as contributing partners in their families.
Ask the Question: How can we minister as a family?
There are so many ways to serve and love the people in your family and community. Invite a family over for a fun game night. Get a group together to play softball at the park. Create a cooking night where friends get together to share their favorite recipes. Set up a movie in the backyard and invite neighbors over for the evening. Help a friend with yard work. Invite a person to sit with you at lunch or attend a youth activity. Collect mail for a neighbor who is out of town or offer to feed their cats! Make homemade birthday cards and send them in the mail. Any expression of service, love, and care is ministering. Think about what Jesus would do and follow His example.
Ask the Question: Why do we minister?
When we make an effort to follow Jesus Christ and keep his commandments, we are blessed. Blessings come in so many different ways! It may come in the form of a lifetime friendship. Or, you may learn a new talent or skill thorough you association with the people you minister. Families who serve as a unit draw closer together and have more peace in their home. You could be blessed with an increased ability to converse with new people. As you interact more frequently with the Spirit and follow His promptings in your ministering efforts, your testimony will grow. Just as each person’s/family’s ministering efforts will be unique, the blessings that come from those efforts will also be personalized.
One of the greatest blessings of all will be sharing the light of the gospel of Jesus Christ. “As we accept the opportunity to wholeheartedly minister to our sisters and brothers,” Sister Bingham concluded, “we are blessed to become more spiritually refined, more in tune with the will of God, and more able to understand His plan to help each one return to Him.”
Incorporate the information in this section that you feel is applicable to your family during your own family fireside chat. The associated object lesson is described in detail below.
How to plan a Family Fireside Chat on Ministering
As you present the concept of ministering to your family, use this object lesson to make the lesson more memorable. To start, build a beautiful big fire. Fires are mesmerizing. Don’t you just love to watch the flames dance and flicker? It is the best! The fire represents a burning testimony of Jesus Christ and His gospel. Explain that gaining a testimony is like building a fire. Just as we have to add wood to keep a fire burning, we must pray, repent, serve others, study the scriptures, and keep the commandments to help our testimonies grow.
Point out how the wood that is in the flames burns and shines. The hot coals turn white and glow. Remove a portion of the wood coals from the fire. Set the piece to the rim of the fire ring, far enough from the flames that it is not considered part of the fire. Watch how it cools and eventually the light will go completely out. It does not have the heat from the rest of the wood to keep it’s light shining.
When a person stops living the gospel or they feel alone and friendless their testimony can loose its strength. Without positive relationships and interaction with other Christians, it is hard to keep faith in Jesus and God. The longer they stay away from the flames, the dimmer their testimony becomes.
Ministering can help! By reaching out to individuals who have lost their testimony, who feel sad or lonely, or who feel like they don’t belong in the Church, you can bring them back to the flame. Sharing your own light can cause a spark. Sincere efforts to be a friend and include an individual in wholesome activities can make a huge impact on their faith. Once the cold black coal is back with the rest of the coals, it doesn’t take long for it to begin to heat up and glow. Just as it doesn’t take long for someone to feel their own testimony burning again.
Be a friend. Watch out for those in your care. Notice when their light is starting to dim and invite them back to the fold of Jesus Christ. Be ready to serve and you will find a bonfire of happiness and blessings in your ministering efforts.
Family Fireside Chat FHE Snack
You can’t have a family fireside chat without roasting marshmallows! I think marshmallows were invented just so we could have something to eat around a fire. It is one of my favorite traditions. Roast some marshmallows…tuck them into a sandwich of graham crackers and chocolate if you want to get really fancy. S’mores are fantastic. Just be prepared to get sticky.
The principle of ministering is not new. The Savior taught the two great commandments– to love God and love our neighbors as ourselves. A perfect way to show this love is through ministering. A sincere effort to be a friend can make a mighty change in your own life and also in the life of those you serve.