In seminary we have something called “The Basic Doctrines”, which is a list of doctrines that we are supposed to focus on with a specific and constant focus throughout the year. This list was put together by the Church Board of Education which is made up of propets, apostles and other auxillary leaders. They are inspired. And this list has been a wonderful thing.
As I look through this list, I know that these things can make such a difference in our lives. When we have individually paid the price to understand these things – truth will govern us and we change and become stronger and more capable in everything we do. This list is not just a list of good things to know, it is a list of vital, eternal doctrines that absolutely help us to become like Christ. They are grounding.
It may be interesting in Family Home Evening to have your family come up with the list of doctrines that they think this list may be made up of. You could explain that there are 11 of them and some of them have sub-doctrines – but just come up with 11 basic doctrines. Maybe split them up into groups or have them make them individually and see which group or person can come up with a list most like the Church’s Board of Education.
Here is their list:
- The Godhead – God the Father, Jesus Christ, the Holy Ghost
- The Plan of Salvation – Premortal Life, Mortal Life, Life After Death
- Creation and the Fall
- Atonement of Jesus Christ
- Marriage and Family
- Dispensation, Apostasy, and the Restoration
- Priesthood – Aaronic and Melchizedek
- The First Principles and Ordinances – Faith, Repentance, Baptism
- Ordinances and Covenants
Along with the list of doctrines, we also received an explanatory statement along with a list of scriptures and other sources that would help us become knowledgeable in that specific doctrines ourselves. So, I have gathered that information and made something that I feel parents would greatly benefit from. This is something that I hope will give you some tools to really bless your children and to arm them with doctrine that will help them to combat the adversary wherever they go as well as be incredible examples of the power of doctrine.
Print off 2 copies of the Godhead evaluation and spouse study.
In addition, if you have 4 children then print off 4 children evaluations according to their age. Those are found in that same link above.
The directions are below. My husband and I sat down together and started this, and we both expressed that this takes a lot of focus and energy – but it is so worth it. This is a very personal study – not just a topical one. You will see how this doctrine really effects you, and how it really effects your children. We don’t have children of our own yet, but we still filled out the children evaluation and were both really impacted and in total agreement on how important it will be for us to teach them about this doctrine. And I can only imagine that if we filled them out for individual and specific children, how the Spirit would have an opportunity to inspire us and reveal things about each of our children and how we could teach them individually.
First: Both you and your spouse fill out the personal evluation. This is meant for you to evaluate what truths you know about this topic as well as how it has influenced your life.
Second: Fill out an evaluation form for each child. This will help you to step back and see what you know that child already understands and where to go from there.
*One time during parent teacher conferences I was speaking to a wonderful, faithful mother and I showed her a beginning of the year test I had given to my students so that I could see what things they came into my class already knowing. This particular mother’s child had done very poorly on the Plan of Salvation and I felt the mother may be interested in knowing this. I will never forget her reaction – At first she was surprised, and then she realized something and explained to me that her child was the youngest of all her children, and she had been very faithful in teaching her older children on their level, but as this one came along – their Family Home Evenings were more geared to the older children and she hadn’t realized that she had not given her younger child the same attention. That was a very insightful conversation for me. These evaluation forms are meant for you and your spouse to sit down and discuss each child for each doctrine. This will be extensive and very time consuming, but well worth it.
Third: After, you feel out the evaluation forms, then you and your spouse can begin a study of this doctrine. A list of scriptures has been provided as well as some talks, but by no means is this an all-inclusive list. Just a beginning one – you may already know of other scriptures, talks, or parts of books you may want to study. The reason I felt that the study would be most effective after the evaluations were done, was because then you have already discussed the needs of each child and have put yourself in a position where the things you study can help you with those needs. A wonderful opportunity for you and your spouse to receive inspiration and direction for yourselves and your family.
* I will continue posting these doctrinal spouse study guides with new evaluation forms each week. I will post them in the order of the list I received. I will also post ideas on how to teach these doctrines to your family as well as quotes and other sources.
Next week: God the Father.
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