Monday, September 16, 2013

Elder Bednar: The Importance of a Body

I spotted these little guys on Pinterest, and I just couldn't resist using them to discuss Elder Bednar's powerful talk "We Believe in Being Chaste."  (You know, the one that earned him a fist-bump from Elder Perry afterwards?!)  Fantastic.

Now, there are lessons...and there are lessons involving food...and there are lessons where the food IS the lesson.  Which one of these do you think my kids go for most?

You got it.  They went nuts for these little critters when I served them for breakfast last Saturday.  Since these strawberries looked like little people, it was the perfect springboard into a discussion of important principles about our bodies.

My kids learned what Elder Bednar taught pretty quickly.  When I ask, they are eager to answer, "Wait to have sex until you are married."  I think they enjoy saying "sex" and it being the right answer and nothing to be embarrassed to discuss with Mom and Dad.  What Elder Bednar actually said is this:

"The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has a single, undeviating standard for sexual morality: intimate relations are proper only between a man and a woman in the marriage relationship prescribed in God's plan."

Since the children already had this point memorized, we delved into some of his other important points.  I asked them to remember three things:

1.  Your body is very, very important (because it helps you learn and experience things we couldn't before coming to earth.  Even Jesus needed a body to accomplish the Atonement.)

2.  Satan will never have a body, so he will try to temp you to misuse yours.  Don't listen to him.

3.  Save sex for marriage...then have it often--with your spouse only.  (...and make lots of babies, if God decides to send them to you, because babies are wonderful!)

Later that morning, we went to see Steve compete in a bike race.  He did so well.  He takes really good care of his body and is a good example to all of us in our family.  

During our lesson, we talked about how when our bodies are tired or hungry, it can sometimes be harder to make good choices.  Well, keeping our bodies healthy and treating them as sacred gifts helps make it easier to make good choices all of the time...and easier for our bodies to obey our spirits.

At the end of the race, we waited around for them to pass out awards.  Steve certainly earned one for finishing 2nd in his age group and 12th overall.

But halfway through the awards ceremony, the announcer paused.  He told the crowd that the last racer was finally going to cross the finish line, and that it sure would make his day if we all cheered as he did.

We all did as he said.  Hooting and hollering, we noticed that this boy, who had helped to organize the race, was a little slow in more ways than athletics.  He had thick glasses, a slower speech, and he was racing with less-than-ideal equipment.  Someone had to go back and drive him back from the course, but he wanted the pride of crossing the finish line on his bike.

Now remember how I cry at all parades, the sound of a marching band, and whenever the flag goes by?  Well, add to that...cheering for the underdog.  I had to fight back tears as we yelled for this sweet kid, and I remembered one of my favorite lines from two General Conferences ago.  Quoting Elder Nelson, Elder Rasband said:  "A perfect body is not required to achieve a divine destiny.  In fact, some of the sweetest spirits are housed in frail frames."

A perfect body is not required to achieve a divine destiny.  But the Atonement is, and I am so thankful that the Savior used His perfect body to help each one of us cross the ultimate finish line.

You can find more General Conference Review Lessons here:

Catch the Wave - Elder Nelson
Fan the Flame of Your Faith - Elder Holland
Stay in Condition - President Packer
A Christ-centered Home - Elder Scott
The Importance of a Body - Elder Bednar

And check out "Every Child Deserves a Mother and a Father" by Amelia Summerhays in the Celebration of Family today!


  1. love your strawberry people and the lesson-so important to start early...

  2. Jocelyn, this was so sweet. I share your tears at parades, marching bands, etc. I have a soft heart for such things!

  3. What a powerful lesson and I loved the pictures. This is one to share for sure.

  4. I love the quote from Elder Rasband's talk. It has special meaning to me. I remember when he gave that talk because it was direct answer to my prayerful questions related to our seventh child, Mason, who has Spina bifida and is paralyzed.