Where did you come from? Why are you here on earth? Where will you go when your life on earth is over? Heavenly Father answered these questions when He gave us the plan of salvation—His plan for His children:
Where did you come from? Your came from heaven, where you lived with your Heavenly Parents as a spirit child.
Why are you here on earth? You came to earth to gain a body and to show that you can keep Heavenly Father’s commandments and learn to live like Jesus.
Where will you go when your life on earth is over? You will go to a spirit world, where you will be loved. You will wait there until the time of resurrection and judgment. Jesus is the Savior and has paid for all our sins. If you have turned eight years old and become accountable, have faith, and have repented and been baptized, you will be forgiven for your sins. In heaven are three separate kingdoms, or places of glory—the telestial (lowest), the terrestrial (middle), and the celestial (highest) kingdoms. If you have kept the commandments in a valiant way, you will go to the celestial kingdom to enjoy eternal life with Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ.
When we learned in our pre-earth life about the plan of salvation, we were so excited that we shouted for joy (see Job 38:7). Because we’re here on earth, we know that we followed the first part of Heavenly Father’s plan. And we can continue to follow His plan by keeping the commandments. In this way, with the help of the Savior, we can return home to Heavenly Father and Jesus someday. Understanding the plan of salvation brings us peace.
1. Remove page 15, color the plan of salvation stickers, and cut them out.
2. Cut off the plan of salvation chart and mount it on lightweight cardboard.
3. Read the scripture references, then paste the stickers where they belong on the chart.
1. Sing “I Will Follow God’s Plan” (Children’s Songbook, page 164). Focusing on the earth-life experience (where they are now), have the children identify people in the scriptures—such as Joseph, Moses, Esther, Nephi, Paul, and/or others of your choosing—who have followed God’s plan for them here on earth. Use pictures and help children retell, or role-play, stories from the lives ot these people. See the Bible Dictionary and the Book of Mormon Index for help.
2. Using the plan ot salvation stickers, help younger children make mobiles (see Sharing Time, Friend, June 1993, page 13) or necklaces as reminders of God’s plan for them.
3. Sing “I Lived in Heaven,” “I Know My Father Lives,” and/or “I Am a Child of God” (Children’s Songbook, pages 4, 5, and 2, respectively), then have each child create pages for his or her Book of Peace (see Sharing Time Ideas #3, Friend, January 1994, page 44) by illustrating one of the songs.
4. Discuss with the children about how the first principles and ordinances of the gospel, studying the scriptures, etc., help us to prove that we can keep Heavenly Father’s commandments and live like Jesus. Have them listen and stand up as soon as they can identify the part of God’s plan for everyone in the following songs from the Children’s Songbook. Call upon the first one standing to tell what part it is. Faith—“Jesus Is Our Loving Friend,” page 58, and “I Feel My Savior’s Love,” page 74. Repentance—“Repentance,” page 98, and “Help Me, Dear Father,” page 99 (second verse). Baptism—“When I Am Baptized,” page 103, and “Baptism,” page 100. The gift of the Holy Ghost—“The Holy Ghost,” page 105. Prayer—“I Thank Thee, Dear Father,” page 7, “I Pray in Faith,” page 14, and “Heavenly Father; Now I Pray,” page 19. Scripture study—“Search, Ponder, and Pray,” page 109. Obeying the commandments—“Keep the Commandments,” page 146. Service—“When We’re Helping,” page 198. Forgiveness—“Help Me, Dear Father,” page 99. Temple worship—“I Love to See the Temple,” page 95.
5. Have older children read the following scriptures and identify the parts of God’s plan for everyone. Faith—Proverbs 3:5–6 [Prov. 3:5–6]; John 3:16; John 20:3. Repentance, baptism, and the gift of the Holy Ghost—Acts 2:38; 3 Nephi 27:20 [3 Ne. 27:20]. Prayer—Psalms 55:17 [Ps. 55:17]; Matthew 6:6 [Matt. 6:6]; Alma 37:37. Scripture study—John 5:39; Doctrine and Covenants 1:37 [D&C 1:37]; Doctrine and Covenants 33:16 [D&C 33:16]. Obeying the commandments—Deuteronomy 6:17 [Deut. 6:17]; Mosiah 2:22, 41. Service—Mosiah 2:17; Doctrine and Covenants 4:2 [D&C 4:2]. Forgiveness—Matthew 18:21–22 [Matt. 18:21–22]; Ephesians 4:32 [Eph. 4:32]. Temple worship—Isaiah 2:3 [Isa. 2:3]; Doctrine and Covenants 88:119 [D&C 88:119]; Doctrine and Covenants 97:15 [D&C 97:15].
6. Invite a faithful member of your ward/branch to testify and share experiences about how God’s plan and His guidance have helped her or him.