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Build on the Rock

Items needed

  • a casserole dish
  • a bowl of sand
  • a rock
  • two small houses, maybe made of paper or represented by lego blocks

Put the empty casserole dish on the table so that all the children can see it.

Then tip the small bowl with sand in it upside down inside the casserole dish to make something like a small sand island in the dish. (Don't worry if a little crumbles.)

Place the medium size rock at the other end of the casserole dish.

Then place a "house" on both the sand island and the rock.

Invite a member of the class to read Matthew 7:24-27, where the Lord likens a person who follows His words to a wise man who built his house upon a rock, and likens those who hears his sayings and won't do them is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. When trial and adversity come, the man who wouldn't put the words he heard into practice is washed away, but the man who acted on what he heard, fell not.

Read also Helaman 5:12: "And now, my sons, remember, remember that 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, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall."

Things to discuss:

1) Point out that the wise man who listened to the words was not spared the storm (it hit him as hard as the foolish man), but when trial and adversity came, he was able to withstand them and not fall.

2) What sorts of storms can Heavenly Father help us weather?

3) Can you think of an example of someone in the scriptures who listened to the Lord and survived a storm in his/her life? (Daniel; Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego; Nephi)

4) Can you think of someone who didn't and fell? (Sampson, King David, King Noah, etc)

5) How can you build on the rock? (listen at General Conference and put into practice something you learned; obey a bishop or parent's counsel; read the scriptures and apply those principles, etc)

This object lesson was inspired by one at, but it is also the LDS Primary Manual 2, 36: I Am Wise When I Choose the Right. A similar story by President Kimball is found in my clipart gallery at Tree of Protection.

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Jenny Smith
Jenny Smith is a designer who started blogging in 2004 to share lesson and activity ideas with members of her home branch Mississippi. Her collection has grown, and she now single-handedly manages the world's largest collection of free lesson help for LDS teachers with faceted search. Her library includes teaching techniques, object lessons, mini lessons, handouts, visual aids, and doctrinal mastery games categorized by scripture reference and gospel topic. Jenny loves tomatoes, Star Trek, and her family -- not necessarily in that order.
Jenny Smith is a designer, blogger, and tomato enthusiast who lives in Virginia on a 350+ acre farm with her husband and one very grouchy cat.
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