Family Home Evening: Agency and Accountability

Agency and accountability are some of the most important principles that you can teach your children about. In continuing with using the For Strength of Youth Pamphlet as a guide for family home evenings, I thought that I would use the section “Agency and Accountability.” This is an important section as it talks about the ability to make choices which we each have been blessed with. It also talks about accountability or the fact that we will receive consequences for every choice that we make.

A good opening scripture is 2 Nephi 2:27. If you have youth you will want to read and discuss the section from the pamphlet with them. Ask your youth what it means to be accountable. It is important for your youth to understand that while they are able to make decisions and determine what they want, they are not able to choose the consequences for their decisions. You can have good or bad consequences depending on what you have chosen. You may want to end the discussion by reading Matthew 25:14-29. This is the parable about the servants and the talents. You may want to discuss how this parable applies to our lives and our choices.

If you have Primary age children you may want to use one of the following articles from “The Friend” to add to your lesson. If you have older Primary children the article “Age of Accountability” talks about turning eight, and has flannel board figures that you can use in telling the story. In “Always Choose the Right” there is an outline for a family home evening as well as a game to play. In “I Will Always Choose the Right” it talks about situations that people might face and how to choose the right. You may also want to talk about the parable about the talents and teach your children how we can apply that to our agency.

If you are teaching a group of adults you may want to read and discuss the Ensign article “Agency: The Gift of Choices” by Elder Spencer J. Condie. You may also want to talk about how we each made the choice to come here to earth.

Songs that would work well with this lesson include “Dare to Do Right” and “I’m Trying to Be like Jesus” from the Children’s Songbook. Hymns you may want to use include “Choose the Right” and “Do What Is Right.” Remember that as you plan the lesson for your family you know the things that your family needs the most. As you pray about it, you will be prompted as to what points you should focus on.