When the whole congregation lifts their hands
to sustain someone with a new calling
children often follow suit even though they don’t understand what is happening.
What do your children need to know about sustaining others?
Read on to find out
Teach children: Sustaining others is a unique opportunity
Latter-day Saints are very different, unique, peculiar.
We don’t vote for church leaders
or vie for office
or even have church office handed down through heredity.
But we are offered the sacred opportunity
to lift our hands in a promise to sustain our leaders.
That peculiarity can mean everything to our children.
Sustaining unites us
“Every voice counts and every helping hand looked to.
No one has to serve alone in the Church, whatever our calling.”Jeffrey R. Holland
Your children will most likely have the opportunity to serve in a calling.
Serving the Lord is rarely comfortable.
They may not feel confident in their new role.
But as they are sustained in Sacrament meeting,
they will see a field of lifted hands to sustain them.
That means that the rest of the ward or branch is committed to help them,
to support them,
to refrain from being critical of their imperfect efforts.
What a powerful and comforting practice this is.
No one has to serve alone, unaided.
We are all in this together.
Sustaining can be a feast for children
“Being sustained by the members of the Church
is spiritually akin to receiving life-giving food. . .
That sacred vote lifts and blesses . . .
but it also lifts the sustainers.
It empowers them and blesses them and gives them guidance.”Jeffrey R. Holland
Is it an accident that the word sustain is so similar to the sustenance?
According to Elder Holland, the answer is no.
As we sustain each other we not only feed each other,
we are also invited to sit down at the feast ourselves.
Sustaining each other is how we will receive a spiritual energy boost.
Our children can be given spiritual vitamins,
strength and building blocks of growth
as they take the privilege of sustaining others seriously.
Ultimately we are sustaining God
“I hope you will realize, all of you,
that this [sustaining others] is a sacred privilege. …
How grateful we ought to be
to know that this work is not the work of man,
but it is the work of the Lord.”George Albert Smith
How generous the Lord is to ask us to be a part of His great work.
How kind He is to listen to us
and give us the opportunity to raise our hands to the square
and dedicate ourselves to Him and His great work.
Each time we lift and support each other,
each time we sustain each other.
We are once again showing our love of God.
What a wonderful truth to teach our children.
Children can understand the joy of sustaining others
As you teach your children that the act of sustaining others
has deep meaning behind the brief action of raising our hands
you can help them grasp the blessings of:
- Feeling the strength of unity that comes from sustaining
- Give and receive a spiritual feast
- Ultimately show their love of God as they serve His children
Your children can be sustained by a feast of blessings.