Fifteen years ago, my daughter was turning eight years old and I created a flannel board story to help her learn about this important step. You can print this script and the pieces I am sharing at the end of this article as a lesson to help your children prepare for baptism or to help them better understand the covenants they have already made. If you want the companion lesson on the gift of Holy Ghost, you can find it here.
Baptism is the first step on the path to eternal life.
One of the most important decisions we will make in our lives is the decision to be baptized and become a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. This is a very important step in the life of each child of God. It is so important that our Savior, Jesus Christ, was baptized to set the perfect example, though He did not need the cleansing part of the ordinance Himself.
Why do we need to be baptized?
- It is a commandment and we do it to obey Heavenly Father.
- Through baptism we become a member of Christ’s church.
- We are baptized to follow the example Jesus set for us.
How must we be baptized?
- Baptism in water is the introductory ordinance of the gospel of Jesus Christ, and must be followed by baptism of the Spirit, or the gift of the Holy Ghost, in order to be complete. Baptism symbolizes death, burial, and resurrection, and must be done by immersion – going completely under the water.
What do we promise, or covenant, when we are baptized?
· We promise to take upon us Christ’s name.
· To serve and help each other (hands)
· To obey the commandments
· And to serve Heavenly Father till the end of our lives
What does Heavenly Father promise us when we are baptized and keep our promises?
· Heavenly Father promises us that He will forgive our sins as we repent of them (atonement)
· To give us the Holy Ghost as a constant companion as we remain worthy
· To let us come forth at the first resurrection
· And to give us eternal life (heaven) if we endure to the end
Baptism is the first step on the path to eternal life, and it is a very big step. In taking this step we choose to separate ourselves from the rest of the world and become part of Heavenly Father’s kingdom. We choose to live a life with higher standards. A life where we will:
- Dress modestly and keep our thoughts pure and our language (lips) clean.
- Pick only uplifting music to listen to, books to read, and shows to watch.
- Choose good friends who encourage us to be our best self.
- Treat everyone kindly even when they are not kind (heart).
- Put only healthy things into our body & keep yourself pure for our future husband/wife.
- Keep the Sabbath holy (church).
- Keep ourselves worthy in all ways to enter the house of the Lord (temple).
In other words, after we are baptized, there must be a death to the type of life most people live. The part of us who wants to disobey Heavenly Father dies and is buried in the baptismal font. We leave that part there as we begin a new life! A life where we do our very best in everything we do. When we do make mistakes, we use Christ’s atonement to repent and to become a better person.
There are steps we take after baptism to grow closer to Christ:
· Study the gospel through the scriptures and conference talks
· Pray regularly to create a growing relationship with Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ.
· Fast (no food) to receive answers and added strength.
· Attend church meetings.
· Partake of the Sacrament to renew our covenants and become clean again
Elder Bruce D. Porter taught,
“You do not need to be baptized a second time to be as pure as when you were first baptized. You can renew your covenant of baptism each week when you partake of the sacrament. As you live that covenant, exercise faith in Christ, and repent of your daily mistakes, the Holy Ghost will bless you with the assurance that your sins are forgiven. It will cleanse your soul of guilt and bring peace to your heart. In this way, you can feel as pure and clean as the day you were baptized.”
· Serve those around us (hands).
· Use the atonement to repent of mistakes and grow stronger spiritually as we learn from those mistakes.
· Follow the guidance of the Holy Ghost. – The more we listen the better we will recognize and understand His promptings.
The last step I will mention is what President Spencer W. Kimball defined as the most important word in the dictionary. He said, “When you look in the dictionary for the most important word, do you know what it is? It could be ‘Remember’. Because all of you have made covenants – you know what to do and you know how to do it – our greatest need is to remember. That is why everyone goes to sacrament meeting every Sabbath day, to take the sacrament and listen to the priests pray that they ‘may always remember him and keep his commandments which he has given them.’ Nobody should ever forget to go to sacrament meeting. Remember is the word. Remember is the program.”
A story is told of the son of King Louis XVI of France (prince). As a young man, he was kidnapped by evil men when they dethroned the king. For six months he was exposed to every filthy and vile thing that life had to offer, yet he never buckled under the pressure. This puzzled his captors, and they asked (?) him why he had such great moral strength. His reply was simple: “I cannot do what you ask, for I was born to be a king (crown)”
Remember Child… You were also born the son/daughter of a King, a Heavenly King.
After you take your first step on the covenant path by being baptized and as you remember and follow the other steps we’ve talked about to grow closer to the Savior and our Heavenly Father, little by little you will become holy. Through this process and over time you will prove yourself worthy of the promised gift of royalty in the life to come, worthy of eternal life with our Savior Jesus Christ and our Father in Heaven. Please remember the promises you make through baptism and the steps we’ve talked about so that you can become worthy of those blessings. Remember, you were born to be the daughter/son of a King.
Click and print this script and the images below to use as a flannel board lesson for your family!
Click the images below to print out these FREE coloring pages from Rising Moon Adventures that I created to go with this lesson:
Primary Insights for Come Follow Me videos –
Song 1: Step by Step by Angie Killian
Song 2: When I am Baptized performed on piano by Clint Goodman to go with Bible video (powerful!)
Song 3: I Like to Look for Rainbows by Monica Scott Music