Christlike Attribute #3: Charity and Love
Purpose: To illustrate the importance of developing charity and love for all.
Scripture: “And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins” (1 Peter 4:8).
Hymns: “Have I Done Any Good” (Hymns no. 223), “As I Have Loved You” (Hymns no. 308)
PMG Quote: “When you are filled with charity, you obey God’s commandments and do all you can to serve others and help them receive the restored gospel” (p. 118).
Key Term: Charity – “The highest, noblest, strongest kind of love, not merely affection; the pure love of Christ” (BD).
Lesson: The “first and great commandment” is to love God, while loving our neighbor is the second (see Matt 22:36-39). From these commandments it is clear the importance of developing love and charity is one of the highest priorities of life on earth. In fact, the prophet Moroni taught that without charity we “are nothing” (see Moroni 7:46).
We can gain love for God and charity for mankind through prayer and service to others. Latter-day prophet George Albert Smith was born to a family devoted to loving God and others. From his youth he was an extraordinary example of love and charity. President J. Reuben Clark, said of President Smith: “His real name was Love. … He gave his love to everyone he met.” Once, George A. arrived at home in winter without his coat. His wife, noticing he was chilled and shivering, asked him why he did not wear his coat, only to learn he had given it to a man in need.
“Let us evidence by our conduct,” President George A. Smith encouraged, “By our gentleness, by our love, by our faith, that we do keep that great commandment that the Savior said was like unto the first great commandment, ‘Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.’”
Exercises: Prayerfully select one or more of the following exercises to supplement the lesson.
Ñ Teach: Explain virtue in your own words why it is important to pray for and develop charity.
Testify: Describe a personal experience or feelings you have about the importance of loving and serving others.
? Invite: Practice inviting those you teach to make commitments related to exercising charity (i.e., giving service, expressing love, etc.).
® Role Play: Use the following question to role play a gospel discussion with a friend or family member. “What are some good ways to show love to strangers?”
Open Your Mouth: In the upcoming week, start a gospel conversation with someone by asking them, “How would you define virtue?” Probe to learn what specific behaviors they feel are necessary to lead a virtuous life.
Activities: Arrange a simple service project for FHE. Help weed a neighbor’s yard, take a treat to someone new, write a letter to a missionary, or visit someone who is ill or lonely.
 Teachings of Presidents of the Church: George Albert Smith, 2010, 11
 In Conference Report, Apr. 1949, 10