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1 Nephi 7
The phrase that touches my heart in this chapter is “frankly forgive”
After Nephi’s brothers and some of the sons and daughters of Ishmael tied him up in the wilderness with the intent to leave him for the wild beasts to devour, his faith enabled him to loosen the cords and be set free.
His brothers were still hard hearted, but eventually, they bowed down to him and asked for forgiveness.
Nephi said he did “frankly forgive” them. Meaning he honestly and clearly, with no strings attached, forgave.
At the beginning of the lesson, I had “Nephi” come to the front and sit in a chair. Then I invited “Lamen”, “Lemuel” and the “rebellious daughters and sons of Ishmael” to tie Nephi to the chair (use good judgment if you try this and make sure the “Nephi” you choose is good-natured (mine was) We talked about the natural man reaction to being tied up and left in the wilderness to die vs Nephi using his energy to call on the Lord for a miracle and extending forgiveness.
After this discussion on 1 Nephi 7, I reinforced the principle of forgiveness with this beautiful message by President James E Faust relating the tragedy of the Amish school killings in Pennsylvania and how the Amish community extended pure Christ like forgiveness and love. It is an example of forgiveness that is not often exhibited in the world today.
Because my husband has Amish “roots”, I have had the blessing of being around the Amish community up close and personal over the years.
I set up 2 Amish quilts in front of the class today and displayed small painted wood blocks with scenes from the small town of Sugarcreek, Ohio where there is a large Amish population. I explained how the quilts were made by hand and that a true Amish quilt is always made purposely with a flaw that is not easy to detect but the creator knows it is there. (I have never found them in my quilts). This is a reminder that we all have flaws and need to be forgiving of each other.
This set the tone for watching this message from President Faust.
This is a great message to use during the Book of Mormon study this year any time the subject of forgiveness and love is addressed.
Here is a post I wrote a few years back with this same theme
*Amish quilt image from HERE