If you are teaching this song in March of 2014, there is a great opportunity to introduce it on the last week of February. The theme for that week is: “Agency is the gift to choose for myself.” Use half of your time to sing or review songs about choice.
Explain to the children that along with the gift of agency, we are given the responsibility to make correct choices or suffer consequences. The consequence of sin is that we can never return to our Heavenly Father again. Ask the children how that makes them feel. Have them show you with their faces.
Because He loves us, our Heavenly Father created a way by which we could be forgiven of our sins and return to Him! Show the children the picture “Jesus Praying in Gethsemane,” (GAB 227)
Briefly explain the atonement. Ask the children how they feel to know that Christ would suffer and die to redeem them from their sins and save them from death. Have them show you with their faces. Explain that although it was very sad that Jesus had to experience these things, it is “wonderful” that he loved us so much that he was willing to endure it in order to help us.
Teach the children the chorus to the song.
In March, you can use the document below to teach all three verses. Begin by creating a songbook. Find a paper or plastic folder with brads and fill it with clear plastic page protectors. Arrange the pages so that, when the book is open, the words are on top of the corresponding picture, as shown below:(All but the first and last page protectors will have two sheets of paper each.) Although I normally prefer not to print the lyrics, I think that the vocabulary in this song could be confusing to many of the children. Seeing the words printed may help some of them better understand the message.
As you teach the verses, hold the book open as shown above, so that the children can see both the words and the pictures. Point out and define unfamiliar words. Explain the meaning of the pictures.
Once the children have learned the lyrics, continue to review with the pictures only. Just fold the word pages behind as you sing each line.
That for me, a sinner, he suffered, he bled and died.
I marvel that he would descend from his throne divine
To rescue a soul so rebellious and proud as mine,
That he should extend his great love unto such as I,
Sufficient to own, to redeem, and to justify.
I think of his hands pierced and bleeding to pay the debt.
Such mercy, such love and devotion can I forget?
No, no, I will praise and adore at the mercy seat,
Until at the glorified throne I kneel at his feet.
Emotion is as important a part of this song as the doctrine which is taught. Some of the words in the document are printed in red letters – these are the emotional words. As you sing the song, ask the children to act out these emotions with their faces and bodies.