Before you were born on earth, you lived with Heavenly Father. While you were there, an important meeting was held and Heavenly Father presented a plan that would enable you to live with him again someday. Part of the plan was that you would receive a physical body and learn to choose the right and to do good. You chose to follow Heavenly Father’s plan.
Aurelia Spencer Rogers began at a very young age to follow Heavenly Father’s plan for her. She was six years old when her parents joined the Church. Her family moved from Deep River, Connecticut, to Nauvoo, Illinois. When the Saints were forced to leave Nauvoo, Aurelia’s mother died, leaving seven young children. They and their father crossed the Missouri River and went to Winter Quarters, Nebraska, where he built a log cabin for them to live in.
When Aurelia was twelve, her father was called to serve a mission in Great Britain. She and her fourteen-year-old sister, Ellen, said that they would care for the family while he served the Lord. How would you feel if your father went to serve a Church mission and left you in a new land to take care of little brothers and sisters?
Aurelia loved all children and was concerned about them. When she was a young married woman, she felt that parents needed help in teaching their children about the gospel and about how to treat one another with kindness. When the Primary of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was established in 1878, Aurelia was called to be its first president. Today, all of us can enjoy Primary because Aurelia Spencer Rogers followed Heavenly Father’s plan for her.
The principles mentioned in the thirteenth article of faith suggest some good deeds we can do to follow God’s plan for us. On page 37 is a picture-plan showing a good-deed path. Remove the page and mount it on lightweight cardboard. Glue your photo where indicated, do the good deeds listed below it, and choose other good deeds and do them. (You might want to include giving a talk in Primary, doing something to make your home more beautiful, being patient, being courageous, and complimenting someone.) As you follow God’s plan and do a good deed, write what you did on a sign and color it. When you have filled in and colored all the signs, finish coloring the picture. Then color and cut out the badge and wear it as a reminder that you are following Heavenly Father’s plan for you when you choose to do right.
Give a picture of a person from the scriptures (e.g., Jesus, Joseph Smith, Nephi, Esther, Mormon, Daniel, Samuel, Ruth, Paul) to each class. Have class members discuss how the person followed Heavenly Father’s plan and in what ways he/she was blessed, then share their knowledge with the other children. See the Index and the Bible Dictionary for help.
Discuss the principles mentioned in the thirteenth article of faith with the children. Make a large banner for each class, and have class members decide what they can do together in Primary to help them live Heavenly Father’s plan (e.g., read the scriptures, listen in class). Have them write their ideas on the banner and decorate it, then show it to the other children and share the ideas on it with them.
Using “I Lived in Heaven” and “I Will Follow God’s Plan” (Children’s Songbook, pp. 4, 164), talk about our choosing to come to earth, about how important it is to have God’s light to direct us, about the purpose of life, and about the importance of making correct choices. Discuss what the songs suggest as ways we can follow Heavenly Father’s plan for us.
Have the children draw pictures to illustrate the following terms for their “My Articles of Faith Book” (see Sharing Time, Friend, Jan. 1995, p. 36): “Plan—A Way to Do Something”; “Choice—Deciding Between Two or More Things.”
Have each Primary teacher and the visiting member of the bishopric/branch presidency share with the children an experience in which they followed God’s plan and how it made them feel. They could also bear testimony of the importance of following God’s plan for them.
Hide something and tell the younger children to find it, but don’t tell them what they are looking for or how to find it. As they get confused and start asking questions, talk about why they are confused and how you can help. Tell them what the object is and give them directions for finding it (e.g., take four steps forward, turn to the wall that has windows, etc.). Discuss how much easier it is to find something when we have a plan and follow it.