“The family is ordained of God” (“The Family: A Proclamation to the World”).
I Will Be a Strong Link04282_000_027
When President Gordon B. Hinckley (1910–2008) was a young man, he and his family lived on a farm during the summer. He had this experience there:
“There was a dead tree I wished to pull. I fastened one end of a chain to the tractor and the other end to the tree. As the tractor began to move, the tree shook a little, and then the chain broke.
“I looked at that broken link and wondered how it could have given way. I went to the hardware store and bought a repair link. I put it together again, but it was an awkward and ugly connection. The chain was never, never the same.” 1
Think of yourself as part of a chain—a family chain. President Hinckley said we should never let ourselves be a weak link in our family chain.
Adam and Eve were the first family on earth. They began the family chain. God told them to have children. As Adam and Eve had children, they taught them the gospel.
Just as the children of Adam and Eve learned from their parents and then taught their own children, Heavenly Father wants you to learn from your parents. Then when you have children, He wants you to teach them. You can look to Adam and Eve and other righteous families in the scriptures to learn how to help your family be strong links in the family chain.
Remove page F4, and mount it on heavier paper. Cut out each link on the solid black lines. To cut out the inside of the links, cut through the link on the broken line. Write your name on one of the links and the names of your parents, brothers, sisters, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, or other relatives on the other links. Connect the links. Hang your chain where it will remind you that you are part of a family and that you can be a strong link. In a family home evening, have your family members choose a name on one of the links and tell one thing they have learned from that person that helps them be strong.
Note: This activity may be copied or printed from the Internet at www.lds.org. For English, click on Gospel Library. For other languages, click on Languages.
Illustration by Thomas S. Child
Sharing Time Ideas
Write the following scripture references on the outside of six envelopes, one reference per envelope: Moses 3:24; Moses 5:1; Moses 5:2; Moses 5:4; Moses 5:5; Moses 5:12. Prepare these six wordstrips: marriage, work together, have children, pray, obey commandments, teach children. Cut the letters apart, paper clip each word together, and put them inside the corresponding envelope. Find pictures of families that illustrate each wordstrip. Display
Gospel Art Picture Kit 119 (Adam and Eve Teaching Their Children). Briefly tell the story of Adam and Eve, emphasizing that through them Heavenly Father’s pattern of families was established. Divide into six groups, and give each group an envelope. Have the children read the scripture, unscramble the letters, and glue or tape them together. Beginning with Moses 3:24 and going in order, have each group show their wordstrip and choose a matching picture. Post the pictures around the picture of Adam and Eve. Explain that the family is the best place to learn and live the gospel.
To teach that Heavenly Father blesses righteous families, present a dramatization about the sons of Helaman being protected in battle. Include parts for a narrator, Helaman, and the sons of Helaman (see Alma 53:10–23; 56; 57). Use name tags or simple costumes if desired. Other righteous families were also blessed by Heavenly Father. Divide into two groups. Give each group one of the following stories: Nephi’s family (1 Nephi 17:7–13; 18:1–6) and Jaredite families (Genesis 11:1–9; Ether 1:33–43). Have each group read the story. Act as a reporter (use a microphone if available), and interview each group by asking questions that bring out the details of each story. Bear testimony that Heavenly Father blesses righteous families.
Gordon B. Hinckley, “Keep the Chain Unbroken,” in Brigham Young University 1999–2000 Speeches (2000), 108–9.