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The Power of the Atonement

Place stones or bricks in a backpack. On the stones or bricks, write the words "pains, sorrows, burdens, temptations, troubles and worries." (You could wrap the bricks in brown paper and write the words on the bricks.)

Ask someone to carry to backpack. How would they like to carry the backpack all day? all week? all year?

Show picture of Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane.

Have the person place the backpack beside the picture. Explain that Jesus not only suffered for all of our sins there that we might repent and be forgiven he also suffered for every "pain and affliction and temptation" they we will ever suffer so that he knows how to succor us.

Read Alma 7:11-14 In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus already took upon him all of our suffering. We can give them to him.

Explain that succor means "help, assist, aid support, relieve, and comfort."

Print these words out on a paper and discuss how Jesus can succor us. The Lord succors us:

  • Through prayer: President Faust: "God knows our needs better than we can state them, but He wants us to approach Him in faith to ask for blessings, safety, and comfort." ("The Lifeline of Prayer," Ensign, May, 2002)
  • Through scripture study: "For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope." (Romans 15:4)
  • Through the Christlike service of others: "The Lord does notice us, and he watches over us. But it is usually through another person that he meets our needs. Therefore, it is vital that we serve each other." (President Kimball, March New Era, 71.)
  • Through faith in Jesus Christ: Jesus has said we can cast all our cares upon Him because He cares for us. (see 1 Peter 5:7)

Testify that we can cast our burdens upon the Lord and he will sustain us. (see Ps. 55:22)

Read together Isaiah 53:4-6 "Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows...he was wounded for our transgressions, and with his stripes we are healed."

Teach that when God comforts us, we are then able to comfort others: "Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God."( 2 Cor. 1: 3-4)

Ask your family or class to think of some ways that they could comfort others during the coming week.


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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