{Fhe} Spiritual Whirlwinds

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Last month I guest posted over at Jedi Craft Girl. I was asked to share a lesson on Christ being our foundation.As I was searching on LDS.org for ideas I came across an article titled, ‘Storm Warning’ from Elder Neil L. Andersen.In the article he talked about tornadoes and compared them to spiritual tornadoes. I loved the article and decided to use it for my lesson I would share. A few days later was General Conference, and guess what Elder Andersen talked about!?!As soon as he began his talk I recognized the story he shared from the article I had read just days earlier. I loved his talk!
Today I wanted to share my lesson with all of you. As you all know, we have been asked to make the conference messages a part of our lives for the next 6 months. Do we include our children in this ‘challenge’ our prophet has given to us?Most of the time I just think it’s important for myself to read the messages, but our children need to hear them as well.
I am going to try to start planning FHE lessons around the General Conference messages, and I am going to begin with Elder Andersen’s talk. If you are in need of an FHE lesson, then keep on reading.**The lesson below is based on Elder Andersen’s previous article from the New Era, not his recent Conference address. Both are similar, but if you want to focus on the Conference message then you may need to make a few changes. :)

Sure Foundation FHE:In Elder Andersen’s article he talked about spiritual tornadoes and shared an experience of an actual tornado (he just shared this same experience during this General Conference).He talked about spiritual tornadoes and that we need to be built on a sure foundation if we are going to withstand these spiritual tornadoes. I knew my kiddos would love a lesson on ‘tornadoes’ so I got to work and this is what I came up with!{I also used some ideas from this LessonOpening Story & Object LessonBegin by sharing this message from Elder Andersen {Storm Warning; Oct. 2001; New Era}“A few years ago we were in Tampa, Florida, to spend some time with our family. During our time there, a powerful and potent tornado touched down. While hurricanes are common to Florida, tornadoes are not. This tornado came ripping through Haines City, about 50 miles away from where we were, leaving destruction in its path.I read one experience of a woman in her mobile home. As she heard the winds approaching, she went into her bathroom and crouched down on the floor hoping to avoid injury. She felt her trailer shake, she was jostled around, and then everything was quiet. As she crouched motionless in her bathroom, she heard the voice of her neighbor who lived approximately 50 yards away from her. The voice said, “I am here in the front room.”She thought somehow her neighbor had come into her trailer and was looking for her. She soon, however, was very surprised to find that was not the case at all, but that the winds had lifted, carried, and landed her trailer upright on the top of her neighbor’s trailer. She had not realized it, but her trailer had been flying through the air. Her neighbor was actually below her, in the neighbor’s own mobile home.”
Elder Andersen continues by saying: “When we built our house, it was interesting to see all the efforts made to securely hold the house in place. First a giant hole is dug, and the footers for the foundation are placed deep…into the ground. Steel rods run through the yards and yards of cement that form the foundation. With each adjoining part of the house, metal and steel is used to ensure that each part of the house is attached firmly to the other, and that all is tied securely into the foundation and footers. Every effort is made so that the house may remain stationary should winds or tornadoes come upon us.”Elder Andersen talks about building a house on a strong foundation. By digging and placing cement and rods that house will be built on a sure foundation. A sure foundation will support anything that rests upon it.Why is it important to have a strong/sure foundation?
Do you know the song ‘The Wise Man and The Foolish Man’?Where did the foolish man build his house? {on the sand}And what happened to his house when the rains and floods came? {it washed away}Where did the wise man build his house? {on the rock}And what happened to his house when the rains and floods came?
Just like a house we must be sure to build our lives upon a sure foundation. What do you think it means to build our lives upon a sure foundation?Display a picture of Christ and read: Helaman 5:12
The prophet Helaman said, “It is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, … yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you … , because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall”
Our Savior, Jesus Christ, is the only sure foundation upon whom we can build our lives.Tonight we’re going to discuss some ways that we can build our lives upon the Sure Foundation, Jesus Christ.
Activity: For this activity you will need:·  An empty plastic bottle {water bottle, 2 liter bottle, etc.}·  Something to fill the bottle: beans, rice, water, etc.·  6 small containers or bowls·  Labels for each container with a way we can build upon a sure foundation. You could use scripture references, phrases, or pictures.
Before your lesson get your 6 containers and fill each one with beans, rice or water. Label each container with a scripture reference, phrase, or picture. Here are the 6 things I am using and discussing with our family:·     Study the Scriptures·     Pray Always·     Attend Church·     Keep the Commandments·     Follow the Prophet·     Love & Serve the Lord
As you talk about each way we can build upon a Sure Foundation, you will add a little bit to your empty bottle. After you have discussed all the ways your bottle will be full.
Get Started! Get your empty plastic bottle and place it on the table. Gently push it so that it knocks over. Tell your children that the bottle represents each of us. Right now the bottle isn’t filled with anything, it’s not ‘built’ on a firm foundation. Just like the home in the story that wasn’t built on a firm foundation and was tossed around in the tornado. If we are not build upon a firm foundation we may be knocked over and give in to temptation.
We are going to discuss 6 things that will ‘fill’ us up and help us be built on a firm foundation.Have a member in your family pick one of the containers. If you have chosen to place a scripture on the container then have them read it aloud and then discuss why that is important. Then add the contents of that container to your bottle.Move on to the next container.At the end of the lesson, try to gently push the bottle over again.As we build our lives upon the Sure Foundation, Jesus Christ, we will be able to withstand the storms of life. As we live our lives righteously it will be easier to make correct choices…we will be able to stand tall and not ‘fall over’.
Bottle Bowling Fun Activity: I thought it would be fun to do some ‘Bottle Bowling’ with the family. Use 10 empty bottles as the pins and take turns trying to get a strike!You could even make a competition out of it.Split the family into 2 teams. Have one person bowl. Then ask them a question that has to do with the lesson. If they get it correct they are awarded the number of pins they knocked down as points. If they answer incorrectly they receive no points.At the end of the game the team with the most points WINS!
Journal Time: If your children write in a journal have them think about what they can do to build on a sure foundation. Encourage them to make a goal and write it down. Maybe they would like to read their scriptures every night this month, or attend church every week for 3 months and think about Jesus during the sacrament. If they’d like have them share their goals with the family during the next Family Home Evening. Then have them report how they do. 
HandoutTo help you and your family remember what they can do to build upon the sure foundation of Jesus Christ, I have created these great little bookmark handouts.I have listed the 6 ways shared in my lesson as well as a scripture at the bottom. Place the bookmark in your scriptures, your journal, or place it in your room somewhere you will see it often. Click HERE to print out my Sure Foundation Bookmarks!

I hope you enjoy my FHE lesson on Building on a Sure Foundation. I will try to post any FHE lessons we have using using the Conference messages. Have a wonderful day!

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