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"Lengthen Your Stride"

INDEX:

 

This lesson is a great introduction to the remarkable prophet, Spencer W. Kimball. His motto “Lengthen Your Stride” is explored, with opportunities for family members to consider ways that they can do just a little more to honor their responsibilities. Decorate butter cookies like shoes and play a clever game where everyone tries to “lengthen their stride."

 

SONG

SCRIPTURE

VIDEO CLIP


LESSON SUMMARY

POINTS TO PONDER

 

STORY

TREAT
TIME

ACTIVITY

ACTIVITY PAGES

MUSIC MP3

 

VIDEO CLIP: Modern Prophets
Spencer W. Kimball ch 12

(click on above for full screen)

PRINCIPLE:
Stewardship

 

 

PRINT THIS ENTIRE LESSON

 

20-MINUTE LESSON

   

SONG

 
 

Childrens Songbook #162 “I Will Be Valiant”

If you wish to print sheet music or have an online music file to accompany you click on the song link to visit: http://www.lds.org/cm

SCRIPTURE

D&C 104:11–17

 

11. It is wisdom in me; therefore, a commandment I give unto you, that ye shall organize yourselves and appoint every man his stewardship;

12. That every man may give an account unto me of the stewardship which is appointed unto him.

13. For it is expedient that I, the Lord, should make every man accountable, as a steward over earthly blessings, which I have made and prepared for my creatures.

14. I, the Lord, stretched out the heavens, and built the earth, my very handiwork; and all things therein are mine.

 

15. And it is my purpose to provide for my saints, for all things are mine.

16. But it must needs be done in mine own away; and behold this is the way that I, the Lord, have decreed to provide for my saints, that the poor shall be exalted, in that the rich are made low.

17. For the earth is full, and there is enough and to spare; yea, I prepared all things, and have given unto the children of men to be agents unto themselves.

VIDEO

Watch chapter 12 from The Modern Prophets, Spencer W. Kimball DVD or CLICK FOR CLIP

 

LESSON SUMMARY

 
 

Stewardship and delegation help accomplish the Lord’s work.

As we fulfill our stewardships and effectively delegate we can help the Lord’s work go forward. Delegation requires assigning stewardships to others. No person, not even the Prophet, can do it alone. We all need to do our part to accomplish the Lord’s work.

 

What is a stewardship?

“In the Church a stewardship is a sacred spiritual or temporal trust for which there is accountability. Because all things belong to the Lord, we are stewards over our bodies, minds, families, and properties. A faithful steward is one who exercises righteous dominion, cares for his own, and looks to the poor and needy.”

Spencer W. Kimball, Ensign, Nov. 1977 © 2006 Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.   

 

The Lord holds us accountable for our own stewardships.

Each person should be allowed to exercise their agency in fulfilling their stewardship. A good leader will offer help, support and encouragement to the person they have given the assignment to, but will never make the decisions for them. We can handle our stewardships diligently or lazily, but in the end the Lord will hold us accountable for how we have taken care of our stewardships.

 

Lengthen our stride.

“We have the gospel of Jesus Christ, the gospel of peace, the gospel of joy. We have truths that can make any person better and more fulfilled, any marriage happier and sweeter, any home more heavenly....Yes, it is to ourselves, our homes, our quorums, our classes, our Church assignments that we must carry more energetically those things that we have received....We must lengthen our stride and must do it now.”

Spencer W. Kimball, Ensign, Sept. 1975 © 2006 Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved. 

 

POINTS TO PONDER

 
 

What did President Kimball mean when he asked us to “Lengthen Our Stride”?

To step towards improving how we care for our stewardships.

 

Name some of the things that President Kimball did during his presidency to lengthen his stride?

He conducted more area conferences around the world than any other president in the past and under his direction, 26 temples were dedicated or rededicated.

 

How did the members of the church help President Kimball lengthen his stride?

Because of the daily prayers of the 3.3 million members of the church, President Kimball was blessed with good health in the early years of his presidency, allowing him to lengthen his stride in fullfilling his stewardship.

 

What are some of the stewardships the Lord has given our family?

List both your church callings and your family callings, your bodies, minds, families, and properties, sharing the gospel, etc.

 

How can we “Lengthen Our Stride” in our stewardships?

Do all we can, go the extra mile, share the gospel with our non-member friends, give to the poor and the needy [generous fast offerings, donate to the D.I., Perpetual Education Fund, Humanitarian Aid Fund], give of our time [volunteer work, church callings, visiting teaching, home teaching, etc.]

Quote:

“Abraham’s fulfillment of his stewardship in the home led the Lord to say of him: ‘For I know him, that he will command his children … and they shall keep the way of the Lord.’ (Gen. 18:19.) How often do we say, ‘Yes, I will have home evening with my family, but the children are so young now; I will start when they are older’? How often do we say, ‘Yes, I will obey the commandment to store food and to help others, but just now I have neither the time nor the money to spare; I will obey later’…While we procrastinate, the harvest will be over and we will not be saved. Now is the time to follow Abraham’s example; now is the time to repent; now is the time for prompt obedience to God’s will.”

Spencer W. Kimball, Ensign, June 1975 © 2006 Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved. 

 

STORY

 

 

Mother hung the counted cross-stitch, “Lengthen Your Stride,” on the family room wall.

“What does it say Momma?” four-year-old Melanie asked.

“Lengthen Your Stride,” Mother answered. “President Kimball is our Prophet and he has asked all the members of the church to ‘Lengthen Your Stride.’ I made this to remind us.”

“What’s a Prophet?” questioned the curious little girl.

“A Prophet is a man called of God to be His mouthpiece. The Lord speaks to us through the Prophet.”

“How come President Kimball is the Prophet?”

“Because President Kimball is such a very good man, the Lord has entrusted him with the stewardship to lead His people.”

“What’s a stewardship?”

“A stewardship is a sacred responsibility that we are given. All of us have many stewardships, even you!”

“I do?” Melanie asked curiously.

“You do! Remember when Daddy gave you the responsibility of helping Momma with baby Erron? Well that’s one of your stewardships,” Mother explained.

“I’m a good helper! I bring you clean diapers for baby Erron and sing him ‘Lullaby Don’t You Cry.’”

Mother gave Melanie a big hug, “You’re the best helper! You do a very good job caring for your stewardship and following the Prophet.”

“’Cause I do what your picture says?

“That’s right!”

“Momma, how can I lengthenen my stride more!?”

“Well, let me think.” Mother paused and then answered, “Well, now that you’re getting a little older, you could help feed Erron his baby cereal. Would you like that?”

“Oh yes, Momma. I will like lengthenen my stride feeding Erron. He’s so cute when he eats. I can do ‘zoom, zoom, open the hanger, here comes the plane.’ He likes that!”

 

by Margie Nauta Lee © Living Scriptures, Inc. 2006

 

TREAT TIME

CLICK TO PRINT “Lengthen Your Stride Butter Cookies” recipe

"Lengthen Your Stride"
Butter Cookies

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Chill Time: 15 minutes

Bake Time: 25-35 minutes

 

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

  2. Cream the butter until softened, then add sugar and salt. Fold in flour and mix to make a stiff dough. Knead gently on a lightly floured board for 2 minutes.

  3. Wrap dough in plastic wrap or wax paper and chill in refrigerator for 15 minutes.

  4. On lightly floured board roll dough out to a thickness of 3/8 to 1/2 inch.

  5. Let children help cut into shoe shapes.

  6. Place cookies two inches apart on baking sheet and place in oven.

  7. Immediately REDUCE HEAT TO 325 F.

  8. Bake until lightly browned (25 to 35 minutes). Reduce heat if cookies are browning too quickly.

  9. Cool cookies on a rack.

Ingredients

  • 1 C. butter

  • 2/3 C. sugar

  • Pinch of salt

  • 2 1/2 C. all-purpose flour

Treat Time:

Let children decorate a pair of “Lengthen Your Stride” shoe cookies with frosting.

 

ACTIVITY

 

Activity:

Younger children will need help from an older sibling or parent.

 

1. Have each family member pick a pair of shoes from the artwork.

2. Tape one of each pair shoes on the floor (to prevent slipping) in a line.

3. Tell your family that President Spencer W. Kimball asked each member of the church, no matter where they live, to “Lengthen Your Stride."

4. To lengthen means to make something longer, or to become longer. A stride is a long step, or a step towards improving something.

5. Have each person step on their paper shoe with their toes touching the toe of the shoe. Then have them take a normal step or stride. Mark their stride by placing the heel of the other paper shoe on the ground even with their heel.

6. Measure each person’s stride from toe to heel. Write each person’s stride length on a piece of paper (after recording the length pick up the second shoe.

7. Now have each person take another step, but this time try to see if they can “Lengthen Their Stride”.

8. Measure each person’s stride again. Then calculate the percentage that each person was able to “Lengthen Their Stride” (example 1st stride is 9 inches and the 2nd stride is 27 inches–The percent increase is 200% or for a smaller child–if the 1st stride is 4 inches and the 2nd stride is 12 inches–The percent increase is also 200%). Explain that everyone can lengthen their stride no matter how old or how young they are.

7. Explain that when President Spencer W. Kimball said to “Lengthen Your Stride” he didn’t mean for us to take longer strides while walking, but to “Lengthen Your Stride” by taking steps towards improving how we care for our stewardships, which include service, missionary work, our bodies, temple work, temple building, church callings, etc.

8. Talk about what we can do to follow President Kimball’s great example of “Lengthening Your Stride.”

Preparation:

 

1. Print out the artwork and text.

2. Cut out the artwork.

 

 

What you need:

 

A copy of “Lengthen Your Stride” footprint game (artwork included with this lesson), scissors, tape, a piece of paper, pencil, tape measure and calculator or go to http://www.newsengin.com. Click on free tools and then click on percent change calculator.

 
 

ACTIVITY PAGES

 
       
         
         

MUSIC MP3

 

 

20-MINUTE LESSON

CLICK TO PRINT "20-MINUTE" LESSON NOTES

 

1. What is a stewardship?

“In the Church a stewardship is a sacred spiritual or temporal trust for which there is accountability. Because all things belong to the Lord, we are stewards over our bodies, minds, families, and properties. A faithful steward is one who exercises righteous dominion, cares for his own, and looks to the poor and needy.”

Spencer W. Kimball, Ensign, Nov. 1977 © 2006 Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved.   

 

2. Does the Lord hold us accountable for how we fulfill our stewardships?

Each person is held accountable for how they fulfill their stewardships. We can handle our stewardships diligently or lazily, but in the end the Lord will judge how well we did. “For it is expedient that I, the Lord, should make every man accountable, as a steward over earthly blessings...” D&C 104:13

 

3. President Spencer W. Kimball asked each member of the church to “Lengthen Your Stride” in fulfilling your stewardships.

“ It is to ourselves, our homes, our quorums, our classes, our Church assignments that we must carry more energetically those things that we have received....We must lengthen our stride and must do it now.” Spencer W. Kimball, Ensign, Sept. 1975 © 2006 Intellectual Reserve, Inc. All rights reserved. 

 

4. What does it mean to “Lengthen Your Stride”?

To lengthen means to make something longer, or to become longer. A stride is a long step, or a step towards improving something.

 

5. Can everyone lengthen their stride?

Yes. No matter how old or young you are you can lengthen your stride. Have each family member take a normal stride or step. Measure and record their step. Then have them take a step in which they are lengthening their stride. Measure the difference. See activity

 

6. When President Kimball said “Lengthen Your Stride” was he asking us to take longer steps?

No. He was asking us to step towards improving how we care for our stewardships, but just like everyone was able to take longer steps, we can all improve and do a better job caring for our stewardships.

 

7. President Kimball showed us by his great example how to “Lengthen Your Stride”.

As president of the church he conducted more are conferences around the world than any other president before him. Under his direction 26 temples were dedicated or rededicated making it possible for many more Saints to receive the blessings of the temple.