I managed to get a decent dinner on the table: spaghetti, rolls, corn and salad. The kids ate and we chatted about the day, and what our FHE lesson should be about. Yaks thought we should talk about Prophets, since that's what they learned about in Primary that week. After dinner I cleared the dishes and those two big kids got right to work getting the lesson ready.
The lesson started out pretty simple. We sang ALL. NINE. VERSES. of Follow the Prophet, and then I turned the time over to Yaks to see what he would teach us. "I'm glad we have prophets. Heavenly Father gives us prophets so we'll know what to do. If we didn't have a prophet, it would be really confusing! For example (yes, he said "for example"), who would we pay our tithing to? How would we know what songs to sing at church? Who would tell us what lessons to teach? Those types of things. So, that's why we need a prophet." I added and clarified a few things, and we talked about some of the revelations that Heavenly Father has given to us through Prophets, including Tithing, Word of Wisdom.
Then somehow we got off on the tangent of death, and what happens after we die. It was an interesting turn, but I felt prepared to talk about it, particularly since we've been learning about the Plan of Salvation all month in YW's. My friend Marie' was right when she commented, "The best way we can prepare for our lessons is to teach our children." We talked about the war in heaven, and how we were all there, and how we each had to make a choice if we would follow Heavenly Father's plan or Satan's. Boo knows a lot, but still had some questions. "Did we fight with Satan with swords?" Yaks throughout the discussion kept asking, "Were you there? Was I there with you, or was I alone?" I told him we were all together as families and friends, but each person had to make their own choice, and everyone here on the earth made the choice to follow Jesus Christ. Then we talked about earth life, and different things that we face on earth (choices good and bad, as well as trials), and how Christ paid for our pains and mistakes in Gethsemane and on the cross. "Did Jesus want to do that? Was he all alone in the Garden?"
|"Not My Will But Thine" by Walter Rane|
|"Against the Wind" Liz Lemon Swindle|
I shared with them how I felt when my grandparents died. I felt sad not to see them as often, but I was happy that their spirits were with their moms and dads again, and that they didn't need canes or walkers or medicine, and didn't feel pain anymore, because when we are resurrected, we are perfect. "Will Grandpa Hale need a walker when he dies? Will people need glasses or hearing aides?" they wondered. No.
Then Yaks said, "But Mom, if your parents die, then you will be all alone!" He quickly bent his head over, and I could see tears rolling down his cheeks. I realized his whole fear was of being alone, or of us being separated from eachother. Being alone on earth and being all alone when he died. He was just now realizing that he didn't need to be afraid. I told him, "Oh, I won't be all alone. I'll always have Dad and you and Boo and Diddles. We are always a family. We are a forever family, and that's because of Jesus and because of Heavenly Father's plan that you chose to follow. When Grandma and Grandpa die, they will be waiting in heaven for me, and we'll be together again."
|"Friends" by Liz Lemon Swindle|
Yaks: "Mom, will you wait in heaven for me?"
Mom: "I will wait in heaven for you."
Yaks: "And we won't ever be alone?"
Mom: "You will NEVER be alone."
Yaks: "Mom? I've never cried in family night before..."
Oh, it was the sweetest, most unexpected lesson. Perhaps he was just glad he wouldn't be alone, but for me, as an adult, his comment registered on so many levels: Physically, emotionally, spiritually, "IM NEVER ALONE." I'm sure we've had this lesson dozens of times, but some of these concepts were just registering with them for the first time. I'm so thankful for Christ's Atonement, and our knowledge of the Plan of Salvation. I'm grateful we have a Prophet here on the earth who helps us know and understand these truths.