(Show the kids a new pair of white socks.) Let’s pretend that each of you is wearing a new pair of white socks.
Now, let’s say you ran across the newly mowed lawn in those socks, and then stepped in some oil on the driveway. Next you jumped in a big muddy puddle.
What would your new socks look like?
Would your parents let you wear those dirty socks into the house?
Just like our earthly parents, Heavenly Father doesn’t dirt into His kingdom. But we all make mistakes. When you get mad and yell at your little brother for getting into your room and breaking your favorite toy, your spiritual socks are dirty. If you tell a lie, that’s more dirt on your soul.
There are three ways to have our souls be like a clean pair of socks:
1) Children under the age of accountability (what age is that?)
2) Just barely being baptized.
3) Repenting and partaking of the sacrament if you’ve already been baptized.
Through the atonement, Jesus made it possible for us to repent and be clean – just like a new pair of socks. Because it’s easy to make mistakes, and because we all make them, today we’re going to practice the repentance process.
Repenting is like doing laundry. There are steps we take to get our socks clean, and there are steps we take to become spiritually clean again.
With laundry, we see that we got our socks dirty, we take them off, maybe treat them with stain remover, and then put them in the laundry basket. Next we sort the laundry, and then load it into the washing machine. We add soap and start the wash. After they’re washed we put them in the dryer. If we did everything right, they come out nice and clean.
What if you take off your dirty socks and hide them under the couch? Would they get clean doing that? Will they get clean if you put them back in your sock drawer? What if you put your socks in the laundry basket and they got in the washing machine, but your mom forgot to add the soap. How clean would your socks get?
Steps to repentance--write on the chalkboard
(modified for young children)
These are the steps for repentance:
1. Recognize that you did something wrong
2. Say you are sorry/ask forgiveness from those you wronged
3. Try to make things right
4. Ask forgiveness from Heavenly Father (in prayer – every night or more often)
5. Take the sacrament (every Sunday)
Today is: (have a child from class show the day – start with Thursday)
Draw a child’s name to select a dirty sock. (I used old white socks that no longer are exactly white.)
Read the example pinned to it.
Ask: What did this child do wrong?
What should they do?
What can they do to make things right?
What might they say in their prayer that night?
Today is ______________ is there anything else they can do today?
(Really try not to do that again.)
If it’s SUNDAY, talk about what it means to TAKE THE SACRAMENT.
Place the sock in the basket. On Sunday don’t read a bad example. Dump the dingy socks into the other box and talk about taking the sacrament. Pull out clean socks to represent clean souls. Repeat until all the dirty socks have gone through the repentance process.
End with testimony
Dingy socks with paper inside giving an example of a child doing something wrong
Signs: MONDAY / TUESDAY / WEDNESDAY / THURSDAY / FRIDAY / SATURDAY / SUNDAY
Basket to accumulate dirty socks
Box marked, “Jesus’ atonement makes me clean when I take the Sacrament” containing new white socks
Examples attached to dirty socks:
Kelly lived in a neighborhood with a lot of other children. They enjoyed playing with one another. One day they were all out in the culdesac playing. They saw Sister Albert out on her porch. Kelly went up to her and said, “I want a cookie!” All the other kids came over and demanded cookies too. Sister Albert gave them all cookies, but her face didn’t have its usual smile. None of the kids said thank you. They just took their cookie and ran off to play.
Kelly came home from school to discover that her younger brother got into her room and smeared her lip gloss all over her desk. She was so angry that when she saw him brother she yelled, “You SKUNK! Don’t you ever come in my room again. You ruined my desk and used all my lip gloss. Sometimes I wish you weren’t my brother!” He cried, but Kelly just stomped away.
Kelly was downstairs in her room playing with her Littlest Petshop animals. Her mom called down, “Kelly, I need you to come empty the dishwasher.” Kelly didn’t want to empty the dishwasher. She hollered back upstairs, “I can’t Mom, I’m doing my homework.”
Kelly went with her mom to the grocery store. She saw a pack of gum that she really wanted, but she didn’t bring her money with her. She really wanted the gum, so she looked around to make sure no one was watching and then put a pack into her pocket. She didn’t tell her mom or pay for it when they checked out.
Kelly was playing football with the boys in her class on the field in back of the school. None of the boys would throw her the ball. The bell rang to come in from recess and she’d never gotten to catch the football. She went up to a boy on her team and said, “You never threw me the ball.” Then she spit in his face.
Kelly’s older sister made a batch of cookies to take to Young Women’s. She told everyone in the family not to eat any of the cookies. But they looked really delicious and Kelly ate two when no one was looking.
Kelly has jobs to do at home before she can play on the computer or play with friends. One of her jobs is to clean her room. Instead of really cleaning it, Kelly shoves everything (dirty clothes, school papers, pencils, used tissues) under her bed. When her mom asks if her room is clean, she said, “Yup.” And went off to play.
Kelly’s friend Trina just got back from a cruise to Jamaica. Kelly is jealous. When Trina tells Kelly some of the fun things that they did on their family cruise, Kelly tells her that their family is going to take a 2 week Disney cruise to the Caribbean in a month. But that’s not the truth.
While eating lunch in the cafeteria at school, Kelly tried an experiment. She put a piece of pear from her lunch tray on her spoon. She wondered how a stiff spoon could bend back and flip something. She tried it with her spoon. Wow! Her spoon really shot that piece of pear clear across the lunch room. It landed on a girl’s tray. She wasn’t happy about that and told the lunch aide that Kelly had thrown a pear at her. When the lunch aide came to talk to Kelly and asked if she’d thrown a piece of pear across the lunchroom, Kelly said no, she hadn’t.
Kelly had a friend Trisha. Trisha told her that their neighbors were gone on vacation and their basement sliding door didn’t lock. Their mom kept candybars in their garage freezer. Trisha was going to go get some of the candybars from their garage freezer and eat them. She asked Kelly to come too. Kelly and Trisha both ate their neighbor’s candybars while they were gone on vacation.