Being firmly rooted in the Lord’s covenant path means we have to do things differently from the ways of the world. Whether that manifests in how we eat or drink, how we live, whom we marry, or how we remember Him, we must do things in the Lord’s way to be His chosen people.
For thou art an holy people unto the Lord thy God, and the Lord hath chosen thee to be a peculiar people unto himself, above all the nations that are upon the earth.
1. I want to live the gospel,
To know that its teachings are true,
To follow the plan of my Savior
And live as he wants me to do.
I will try in all I do and say
To live the gospel more each day.
I will try in all I do and say
To live the gospel more each day.
2. I want to live the gospel,
To know I am heard when I pray,
To know that I will be happy
Because I have learned to obey.
Teach: Moses knew that the children of Israel would soon be allowed to live in the promised land the Lord had prepared for them. He worried a little bit that once the people no longer had the hardships of living out in the wilderness that they would begin to forget the Lord and how merciful He had been to the children of Israel.
Scripture: Moses taught the Israelites how they could keep the love of the Lord close even when they lived in the promised land.
And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.
Ask: Why does the Lord want parents to teach children to love and serve God morning and night?
How often is Satan trying to distract or tempt us? [All the time.] God wants us to remember Him and speak of Him often to counteract the attacks of Satan. When we think of Him, we feel His Spirit. The Holy Ghost fills us with joy!
Teach: One way to keep the Lord at the forefront of our minds is to pray. At this time, the Israelites were told to wear special remembrances of the Lord while they prayed. They were worn on the forehead (frontlets) and on the left arm (phylacteries). They were tiny scrolls of parchment with the Mosaic Law written on them, wrapped in tiny boxes and then tied onto the body. Moses warned, “Beware lest thou forget the Lord” (Deut. 6:12).
Ask: Why does it happen sometimes that when we are very blessed, we start to forget the Lord?
How can we prevent this pride? How can we remember the Lord no matter our circumstances?
Teach: When asked what message President Gordon B. Hinckley had for the children, he told them, “Don’t ever forget to pray.” Praying helps us to remember the Lord. Remembering the Lord protects us from temptation and helps us to be happier.
Video: This video teaches the importance of prayer and the children’s song President Hinckley wrote entitled, “Don’t Ever Forget to Pray.”
FOR TEENS & ADULTS
Teach: Just as the children of Israel are preparing to inherit the promised land they have been awaiting for nearly 40 years, Moses begins to see the pending dangers of prosperity.
Read: Deuteronomy 6:10-12
And it shall be, when the Lord thy God shall have brought thee into the land which he sware unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give thee great and goodly cities, which thou buildedst not, And houses full of all good things, which thou filledst not, and wells digged, which thou diggedst not, vineyards and olive trees, which thou plantedst not; when thou shalt have eaten and be full; Then beware lest thou forget the Lord, which brought thee forth out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.
Ask: What are some of the dangers of reaping things you did not sew? [Pride, believing you don’t need the Lord, etc.]
Read: Deuteronomy 8: 2-3. Consider what blessings came from the trials of living in the wilderness. [Grew in faith that the Lord would provide; learned to trust God and seek after Him for all they needed.]
And thou shalt remember all the way which the Lord thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldest keep his commandments, or no.And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the Lord doth man live.
Quote: President Brigham Young was often compared to Moses–leading his people on an exodus to what would be their promised land; a land the Saints could worship without fear of mob violence or persecution. He made similar observations regarding the early Saints as the concerns that Moses expressed about his people.
“The worst fear that I have about [members of this Church] is that they will get rich in this country, forget God and his people, wax fat, and kick themselves out of the Church and go to hell. This people will stand mobbing, robbing, poverty, and all manner of persecution, and be true. But my greater fear for them is that they cannot stand wealth; and yet they have to be tried with riches.”
Ask: Compared to the children of Israel or even the early Saints, we live in profound wealth and prosperity (running water; temperature-controlled housing; clean, healthy food; medical care, etc.). How do we protect ourselves from falling into the pride cycle often brought about by an increase in prosperity?
Video: Elder Dieter Uchtdorf presents some antidotes to pride. Watch here!
Read: Moses also knew of this antidote and taught it anciently.
If there be among you a poor man of one of thy brethren within any of thy gates in thy land which the Lord thy God giveth thee, thou shalt not harden thine heart, nor shut thine hand from thy poor brother: But thou shalt open thine hand wide unto him, and shalt surely lend him sufficient for his need, in that which he wanteth.
Testify: Generosity isn’t born from having an excess. If we aren’t generous and giving when we have little, we won’t give when we have much. When we give, we remember where all blessings come from and we are more protected from falling victim to the pride cycle. Remembering the Lord and giving to those in need, even if we are ourselves in need, will uplift us and protect us from the adversary.
FOR SINGLE STUDY
Read: Deuteronomy 8:11, 13-19
Beware that thou forget not the Lord thy God, in not keeping his commandments, and his judgments, and his statutes, which I command thee this day: And when thy herds and thy flocks multiply, and thy silver and thy gold is multiplied, and all that thou hast is multiplied; Then thine heart be lifted up, and thou forget the Lord thy God, which brought thee forth out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage; Who led thee through that great and terrible wilderness, wherein were fiery serpents, and scorpions, and drought, where there was no water; who brought thee forth water out of the rock of flint; Who fed thee in the wilderness with manna, which thy fathers knew not, that he might humble thee, and that he might prove thee, to do thee good at thy latter end; And thou say in thine heart, My power and the might of mine hand hath gotten me this wealth. But thou shalt remember the Lord thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth, that he may establish his covenant which he sware unto thy fathers, as it is this day. And it shall be, if thou do at all forget the Lord thy God, and walk after other gods, and serve them, and worship them, I testify against you this day that ye shall surely perish.
Consider or Journal: Every blessing, every good thing in life comes from the Lord. There are people who fall into the trap of believing they have achieved so much because of their own hard work, talent, or expertise. But who gave you the strength and stamina to work hard? Who gave you your talents? Who provided opportunities for you to grow in expertise? Write down or share with a friend some of the ways the Lord has blessed you in your life to this point.
Read or Watch: This talk is an absolute classic and is worth revisiting often. Watch or read President Ezra Taft Benson’s timeless words (as delivered by his first counselor, Gordon B. Hinckley) on pride.
Remember the need for humility even when blessings abound with this Humble Pie. Get the recipe here.
Using the video above in the children’s section or this sheet music, learn the song President Hinckley wrote, “Don’t Ever Forget to Pray.”