Our Stake (Arlington Texas) studies one scripture per month. To help families to integrate the scripture into their homes in meaningful ways, for each scripture we share the following:
- the accompanying challenge
- free printables of the scripture or related challenge for display in the home
- family home evening lessons for all types of families
- ideas for using the scripture in a talk or lesson
You can find all of the resources at A Year in the Scriptures.
The scripture for March 2017 is Matthew 6:19-21.
19 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal:
20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal:
21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
Identify the ways in which the world may be drawing you away from what is most important in your life. Make a plan to focus more time and attention on the important things and set the worldly things aside.
Ideas for accomplishing the challenge:
- Complete the My Treasure Quiz and the reflection exercises.
- Conduct an audit of your time. For one week, keep track of where you are spending your time in the same way you would track spending your money. At the end of the week, honestly reflect on whether you are spending your time in a way that aligns with your core values.
- Select one activity you will do less of that draws you away from the most important things, and select one thing you will do more of that draws you closer to the most important things.
- Ask someone close to you to honestly give you their opinion on the things that they see you allowing to draw you away from the most important things.
- Make a weekly journal entry evaluating your progress in focusing on the important things and setting the things of the world aside.
Once again we couldn’t find any free printables, so we made them. You can download the 5 x 7 prints or the 8 x 10 prints. There are a variety of designs in the downloads, so just pick your favorite.
Clicking on the image above will download the 5×7 set of printables.
Click here for the 8×10 set.
Family Home Evening Ideas
It’s rare that a Family Home Evening topic has such a natural treat idea, but this is one of them. Hershey’s nuggets look like little treasure bars of gold.
This 5-minute-FHE lesson on treasures in heaven is straightforward, but has enough depth for older children as well. It’s a particularly good option for families with a wide range of ages of children. The yummy treat recipe is an added bonus (if you don’t want to use Hershey’s Nuggets!).
If you’re looking for a well-planned, very thorough FHE that perfectly aligns with the scripture and challenge and is perfect for young children, this is it. Shared by LDSFamilyFun, it has adaptations for really young children, and it also has great activity ideas.
- Read the scripture block.
- Have each member of the family complete The Treasure Quiz and the first Reflection question privately, and then discuss responses to the first Reflection question.
- Have someone read this quote: “If you have not chosen the kingdom of God first, it will in the end make no difference what you have chosen instead” – Thomas More (click here to print out the quote).
- Discuss how this quote is similar to the idea in the scripture block.
- Give each member of the family time to complete the second Reflection question in The Treasure Quiz privately.
- Follow up to check in on how everyone did on their second Reflection question goals the following week. Encourage family members to adjust goals if needed.
LDS Living shares this very do-able lesson on priorities that aligns very well with the idea of having a gospel-focused life.
Watch the movie Treasure in Heaven: The John Tanner Story (free to watch on Church website).
- Read or watch Where Your Treasure Is by Elder Michael John U. Teh. Then read or watch In Search of Treasure by Thomas S. Monson. Use the diagram you can print out here to compare the ideas in the two talks.
- Write ideas unique to each talk in the circle under the name of that talk, and then write ideas of ideas from both talks in the space where both circles overlap.
- Discuss using the following questions:
- What ideas are unique to each talk?
- Where do the ideas in the talks align?
- Which talk do you think is closest to the idea in this month’s challenge?
- What do you think is one change you could make in your life right now that would bring you closer to this ideal?
Idea #1 under the Teen section above works just as well for adults.
For Lessons and Talks
- In verse 19, we have a shift from Christ’s emphasis on religious actions to everyday actions. He warns of a trap: the love of money and earthly possessions. It’s as dangerous as the love of praise of men.
- The mention of “where moth and dust doth corrupt” may mean less to us now than it would have in Christ’s time. According to the Benson Commentary, “In the eastern countries, where the fashion of clothes did not alter as with us, the treasures of the rich consisted not only of gold and silver, but of costly habits [clothes], and finely-wrought vessels of brass, and tin, and copper, liable to be destroyed in the manner here mentioned.”
- The literal translation is, “Do not treasure your treasures.”
- During Christ’s time, money was often buried in the ground, as there were no such things as banks as we have now. Metal coins buried in the dirt would literally rust, although the reference to rust is not limited to the idea of corrosion.
- This scripture is a parallel of Luke 12:33. The idea of both scriptures is that the things we do form our character, and that character rises with us. Timothy talks about being, “rich in good works” (1Timothy 6:18), “rich in faith” (James 2:5), are made partakers of the “unsearchable riches of Christ and His glory” (Ephesians 3:8; Ephesians 3:16).
- In this chapter from Matthew 6:3 on, Christ shares the conditions that by which those who believe in Him gain salvation. It’s not just good deeds; it’s the sum of a devoted life. It’s how we live every day, the choices we make minute by minute of how to spend our time, that enables us to gather treasure that is reserved for us by God.
- The warning here is that if the treasure you’ve worked for is earth-bound, your heart and devotion will be earth-bound as well. Your treasure is the result of your effort and the object of your love, and because of that, your treasure and your heart cannot be separated. If we are truly focused on the Savior and living the kind of life He wants for us to bring us joy, our treasure must be in heaven because it will be the focus of our effort and the object of our love.
If you would like to see the resources for all of the monthly scriptures, visit this page.
Be sure to visit our Scripture Memorizing Ideas page for ideas and general help on memorizing scriptures.