17 For he will fulfill all his promises which he shall make unto you, for he has fulfilled his promises which he has made unto our fathers.
I’ll seek the Lord early while in my youth,
And he will help me to know the truth.
I’ll search the scriptures and find him there,
Then go to our Father in fervent prayer.
I’ll seek the Lord early, and I’ll obey
His living prophets in all they say.
I’ll keep his commandments; his love will abound.
I will seek the Lord early, and he will be found.
1. I wander through the still of night,
When solitude is ev’rywhere—
Alone, beneath the starry light,
And yet I know that God is there.
I kneel upon the grass and pray;
An answer comes without a voice.
It takes my burden all away
And makes my aching heart rejoice.
2. When I am filled with strong desire
And ask a boon of him, I see
No miracle of living fire,
But what I ask flows into me.
And when the tempest rages high
I feel no arm around me thrust,
But ev’ry storm goes rolling by
When I repose in him my trust.
3. It matters not what may befall,
What threat’ning hand hangs over me;
He is my rampart through it all,
My refuge from mine enemy.
Come unto him all ye depressed,
Ye erring souls whose eyes are dim,
Ye weary ones who long for rest.
Come unto him! Come unto him!
*For All Family Members* Watch the video together of the influence that a patriarchal blessing had upon this young man. There is also an object lesson available for use.
Objective: To illustrate that our Patriarchal Blessings are loving instructions sent from our Heavenly Father.
Materials needed: An addressed, stamped envelope.
To personalize this object lesson even more. Write an actual letter to each of your children telling them the things that you love and appreciate about them, and include guidance, instruction, and encouragement.
Have the everyone imagine themselves far away in a foreign land. They have been away for a long period of time and have started to feel isolated. Have them imagine their joy at receiving a letter from home. They’d most likely read it again and again, savoring every word. Explain that in a sense, we are strangers in a foreign land. But we have the opportunity of receiving a very special letter from home; one which offers divine guidance, instruction, and encouragement. This letter is our patriarchal blessing, and is sent from our Heavenly Father to a child He loves dearly.
*For Younger Children* Refer to the link below to access FAQ’s about Patriarchal Blessings that will help younger children understand Patriarchal Blessings more clearly. Then read part of an interview with Elder Wayne M. Hancock.
Testify of the power of a Patriarchal Blessing in your life.
I love my patriarchal blessing. I carry it with me wherever I go, and I read it often for guidance and direction in my life. You can look forward to getting the needed recommend from your bishop/branch president then receiving your own blessing.
Our patriarchal blessings come from a loving Heavenly Father through an ordained patriarch and contain special and specific counsel for each of us. We don’t always understand our blessings when we get them. Sometimes it takes years before we can see the fulfillment of some parts of the blessings. But if we read them, pray about them, and strive to follow the counsel and advice Heavenly Father gives us in these sacred blessings, we will receive extra help and guidance.
One sentence in my patriarchal blessing thrilled me: “You will be called to preach the gospel in the world.” I had a lifelong desire to serve a mission, and so when I heard that sentence, I felt that I would have that opportunity.
When it was time for me to serve a mission, the United States was involved in a war and only a few young men were actually allowed to serve missions. The rest were expected to serve their country in the war if they were drafted.
At that time, all prospective missionaries were interviewed by General Authorities as well as by their local Church leaders. I went through the interview process and, because of that sentence in my patriarchal blessing, thought that I would be called on a mission. I was terribly disappointed when I was notified that I was required to serve my country, instead.
I often thought about that sentence in my patriarchal blessing. When and how will I be called to preach the gospel? I asked myself. Today, of course, as a General Authority, I am preaching the gospel all over the world. I can see now how that promise is being fulfilled. But when I was younger, I often wondered.
At times in our lives, we may wonder how the Lord will keep His promises. Sometimes it’s hard to see things from His eternal viewpoint, and we start to question why He does certain things and why certain things are happening to us. We must remember that Heavenly Father is perfect and that He loves us very much. We should always trust in Him, and He will lead and guide us into happiness.
One of the ways Heavenly Father helps us find happiness is through righteous parents and Church leaders. They see things differently than we do, and we must listen to them and obey them. Once a group of young men went to a lake. They took a bow and ten arrows with them and decided to shoot at birds flying overhead. Each time they aimed at a bird and shot, they missed. The bird flew away, and the arrow fell harmlessly into the lake.
After they had shot the last arrow, one boy decided to swim to the middle of the lake to retrieve the arrow. He dove in and headed toward it. He got it and then turned back to swim for shore. By this time he was extremely tired. His wet clothing weighed him down. Holding the arrow in his hand made swimming very difficult. He began to fear that he might drown, and he called out desperately to his friends for help.
“Put your feet down and walk to shore,” they called back to him. He couldn’t see things clearly, but his friends, who were looking at things from the shore, knew that he was in shallow water. All he had to do was stand up, and he would be safe.
Our parents and Church leaders often can see things we can’t. If we listen to them, their help and guidance will help us reach the shore safely. Being obedient is crucial to our safety and protection.
Living honestly is also important in our lives. Once, when I was in charge of a huge project in Italy, the people I worked with encouraged me to do something dishonest. “Everyone does it,” my coworkers said. “It’s just the way things are done.” Maybe what they were saying was true. But I refused to do something I knew was wrong. We decided together to do the honest, right thing, and our project was successful.
You will have many chances in life to cheat, lie, or do something else you know you shouldn’t. Sometimes others will encourage you to make wrong choices. It may seem like everyone is doing the wrong thing and you are the only one choosing the right. You may want to go along with everybody else.
Remember that you will always, always be blessed for choosing the right. Heavenly Father knows the decisions you make, and He will strengthen you and support you during difficult times. He loves you very much. Your parents and your Primary teachers and leaders love you, too. Have faith in them and be obedient, and you will receive great blessings.
*For Teenagers or Adults* Read the talk “Your Patriarchal Blessing”, by James E. Faust. Give each child that has received their patriarchal blessing the handout and have them fill it out either during the lesson or on their own.
Use this as an opportunity to bear your testimony and Testify of Patriarchal Blessings and the influence yours has had in your life.
Homemade Ice Cream in a Bag and Fanciful Fruit Pizza
2 tablespoons sugar
1 cup half and half
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup salt (The bigger the granules, the better. Kosher or rock salt works best, but table salt is fine.)
Ice cubes (enough to fill each gallon-size bag about half full)
1 pint-size ziplock bag
1 gallon-size ziplock bag
1. Combine the sugar, half and half, and vanilla extract in the pint-size bag and seal it tightly.
2. Place the salt and ice in the gallon-size bag, then place the sealed smaller bag inside as well. Seal the larger bag. Now shake the bags until the mixture hardens (about 5 minutes). Feel the small bag to determine when it’s done.
3. Take the smaller bag out of the larger one, add mix-ins, and eat the ice cream right out of the bag. Easy cleanup too! Serves 1.
1 roll (16.5 oz) Pillsbury® refrigerated sugar cookies
1 package (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup fresh or canned peach slices, drained, cut into thinner slices
1 cup halved or quartered fresh strawberries
1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries
1/2 cup apple jelly
1. Heat oven to 350°F. Grease 12-inch pizza pan or spray with cooking spray. In pan, break up cookie dough; press dough evenly in bottom of pan to form crust.
2. Bake 16 to 20 minutes or until golden brown. Cool completely, about 30 minutes.
3. In small bowl, beat cream cheese, sugar and vanilla with electric mixer on medium speed until fluffy. Spread mixture over cooled crust. Arrange fruit over cream cheese.
4. Stir jelly until smooth; spoon or brush over fruit. Refrigerate until chilled, at least 1 hour. Cut into wedges or squares. Store in refrigerator.
To Play: The first player sets the camera timer for the longest setting available and starts the countdown. He points the camera at himself for a couple of seconds, then passes it to the person on his left. The other players do the same until the camera snaps a shot. The person whose photo is taken must share it with the group, then perform a forfeit or tell something funny about himself before play resumes. The last person to avoid having his picture taken wins.
2- Outdoor Movie
Make arrangements to watch an Outdoor Movie using your own T.V. or a projector and enjoy the outdoors before it gets too cold!
Brandon is the husband to an incredibly talented soccer mom, a father to the cutest 4-year old twins you have ever seen, and the doggy daddy to two Goldendoodles named Jake and Penny. Brandon has served in various church capacities including full-time missionary in Madrid, Spain, youth instructor, Young Men’s Presidency, Executive Secretary, temple worker, and Elders Quorum Presidency. Brandon is the owner of LDSBookstore.com which has been featured as one of the fastest-growing companies in Utah. He enjoys playing basketball, ping-pong, and throwing his twins in the air.