Friday, September 20, 2013

President Monson: Be Tolerant as Well as Kind

So, we know that a major theme of Conference was "obedience."  In fact, President Monson elaborated on how "Obedience Brings Blessings" when he said, "A knowledge of truth and the answers to our greatest questions come to us as we are obedient to the commandments of God."

In fact, one of my very favorite quotes from General Conference comes from this same talk: "The knowledge which we seek, the answers for which we yearn, and the strength which we desire today to meet the challenges of a complex and changing world can be ours when we willingly obey the Lord's commandments."

It sort of reads like a really long fortune cookie, don't you think?  It was the answer that I didn't know I was looking for, wrapped up so neatly.  If only fortune cookies DID read like that! :)

Anyway, for this lesson, I wanted my children to learn another principle taught by the Prophet...and that principle is this line from his closing remarks:

"May we be tolerant of, as well as kind and loving to, those who do not share our beliefs and our standards."  

He continued, "The Savior brought to this earth a message of love and goodwill to all men and women.  May we ever follow His example."

When I heard him say this, I was struck by his admonition to not only be tolerant, but to be kind and  loving.  We are not only asked to tolerate one another, but to live the higher law is to love the person with whom we do not see eye-to-eye.

This has been a consistent message in his presidency.  In his first talk given in General Conference after becoming prophet, President Monson said this:  

"I would encourage members of the Church wherever they may be to show kindness and respect for all people everywhere.  The world in which we live in filled with diversity.  We can and should demonstrate respect toward those whose beliefs differ from ours."

That was the message that I wanted my children to internalize with this lesson.  

So for their after-school snack earlier this week, I made them "eyeballs"...It's a stretch...but the message for them to remember was:

 "I" will be tolerant as well as kind to those who do not share our beliefs and standards.

It was so nice to sit together and talk about the Prophet's teachings and munch on crackers and cheese ball eyeballs and read library books.  Nice way to have a lesson.

The cheese ball is my friend Cammie's yummy and easy.  All you need is a block of cream cheese, a package of dry ranch mix, and a cup or so of shredded cheddar cheese.  Mix them together in a food processor, form into balls, and refrigerate until eating time.  To make them look like eyeballs, I mashed up avocado and dabbed it on top, then stuck one black bean in the middle.

They acted grossed out at first, but they ate the whole thing.

Find more General Conference Review Lessons here:
I'm not afraid to follow the Savior
 - Elder Oaks
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


  1. I'm teaching Pres. Monson's talk this Sunday for TFOT lesson in RS. Thanks for sharing your great ideas. Your children are so blessed to have you as their mother.

  2. What a wonderful reminder, especially when the world is at our fingertips through media and the internet.

    1. Yes, this lesson could have easily been expanded to specifically mention being kind and tolerant online as well.

  3. This is a great message. Being tolerant is good. Being kind and reaching out is better. And cheese eyeballs are best.