Lesson #2: Our Life in Heaven
Plan of Salvation Activity: You will need 5 feet of string (ribbon, rope, yarn, whatever) for this activity. You will also need baby, child, teen, and adult pictures of you or, if you are too lazy to dig those out, you could use these generic ones. (Note that that site has pages and pages of clip art of people to choose from, many with a lovely early 80s flair.) You will also need four pieces of paper (roughly notecard size), each with one of the following words on it: premortal, birth, death, postmortal. You will also need a small piece of a plastic bag or a piece of plastic wrap. Cut the plastic so that it has the same outline as the adult body from your picture.
Stretch out the string and place the baby picture at about the one foot mark. Explain that everyone begins life as a baby. Then put the child picture to the right of the baby, then the teen, then the adult. (My kids have an endless appetite for funny stories about when I was a kid; this is a good time to share some of those.) End so that the adult picture is about one foot from the right end of the string. Explain that you have a spirit (the clear plastic, which you should place over the adult picture). Explain that before you were a child you were born and put the paper that says ‘birth’ to the left of the baby picture.
Then put the premortal paper to the left of the ‘birth’ paper. Put the plastic in the premortal existence and explain that our spirits existed then, even though our bodies did not. Discuss what we know about premortal life and what we don’t know. (Details in the Gospel Fundamentals manual if you aren’t comfortable winging this.) Talk about the choices that we made in the premortal life and our decision to come to earth.
Then put the death paper to the right of the adult picture. Explain that we all will die and then put down the postmortal paper and then the spirit (without the body) in the postmortal area and talk about what we know and what we don’t know about postmortal life.
Another Plan of Salvation Activity: This activity is better suited for older children than the above. Print out the lyrics to “O My Father” for each family member. (Here’s one source for that.) Sing the song. (Music here.) Explain that the first stanza refers to the premortal life and discuss it. (You’ll probably need to explain some words and phrases.) The second and third stanzas refer to mortal life and some of the things that we learn during it. The fourth stanza refers to postmortal life. A wonderful addition to this activity would be to use these illustrations.