Come, Follow Me
January 29–February 4: “I Will Prepare the Way before You.” 1 Nephi 16–22

“January 29–February 4: ‘I Will Prepare the Way before You.’ 1 Nephi 16–22,” Come, Follow Me—For Home and Church: Book of Mormon 2024 (2023)

“January 29–February 4. 1 Nephi 16–22,” Come, Follow Me—For Home and Church: 2024 (2023)

people examining the Liahona

January 29–February 4: “I Will Prepare the Way before You”

1 Nephi 16–22

As Lehi’s family journeyed toward the promised land, the Lord made them this promise: “I will prepare the way before you, if it so be that ye shall keep my commandments” (1 Nephi 17:13). Clearly, that promise did not mean that the journey would be easy—family members still disagreed, bows broke, people struggled and died, and they still had to build a ship from raw materials. However, when the family faced adversity or tasks that seemed impossible, Nephi recognized that the Lord was never far away. He knew that God “doth nourish [the faithful], and strengthen them, and provide means whereby they can accomplish the thing which he has commanded them” (1 Nephi 17:3). If you ever wonder why bad things happen to good people like Nephi and his family, you may find insights in these chapters. But perhaps more important, you will see what good people do when bad things happen.

Ideas for Learning at Home and at Church

1 Nephi 16–18

seminary icon
The Savior will help me face life’s challenges.

Nephi’s family faced some tough challenges—like all of us do. What can you learn from Nephi about facing adversity with faith in Jesus Christ? Read about his experiences in 1 Nephi 16:17–32; 16:34–39; 17:7–16; 18:1–4; and 18:9–22. Consider recording what you find under headings like these: “Challenge,” “How Nephi Responded,” and “How the Lord Helped.” What do you learn that you could apply to the challenges you face?

After learning from Nephi and his family, you might record additional thoughts under these headings: “My Challenges,” “How I Will Respond,” and “How the Lord Can Help Me.” As you do, you could refer to scriptures like these: Matthew 11:28–30; John 14:26–27; Mosiah 24:13–15. A hymn like “Where Can I Turn for Peace?” (Hymns, no. 129) could strengthen your faith in the Savior and the help He offers during times of trial.

See also Anthony D. Perkins, “Remember Thy Suffering Saints, O Our God,” Liahona, Nov. 2021, 103–5; “He Will Give You Help,” “The Lord Guides Lehi’s Journey,” “The Lord Commands Nephi to Build a Ship,” and “Lehi’s Family Sails to the Promised Land” (videos), Gospel Library; “Life Help,” Gospel Library.

1 Nephi 16:10–16, 23–31; 18:11–22

God guides me through small and simple means.

When God led Lehi’s family into the wilderness, He didn’t give them a map showing every detail of the journey. Instead, He gave them the Liahona to guide them daily. As you read 1 Nephi 16:10–16, 23–31, and 18:10–22, consider making a list of truths that illustrate how God guides His children (for example, 1 Nephi 16:10 can teach that God sometimes guides us in unexpected ways). What similarities do you see between the Liahona and the Holy Ghost? What are the “small means” by which He has brought about “great things” in your life?

See also Alma 37:7, 38–47; Doctrine and Covenants 64:33–34.

Lehi using the Liahona

If Ye Are Prepared Ye Shall Not Fear, by Clark Kelley Price

1 Nephi 17:1–6, 17–22

My trials can be a blessing.

Although Nephi and his brothers had the same challenges in the wilderness, their experiences were very different. You could contrast Nephi’s account of traveling in the wilderness (see 1 Nephi 17:1–6) with his brothers’ account (see 1 Nephi 17:17–22). What did Nephi know or do that helped him have a faithful perspective? Consider writing about a recent or current trial from the perspective of faith and gratitude. What do you feel or learn from this?

See also Amy A. Wright, “Christ Heals That Which Is Broken,” Liahona, May 2022, 81–84; “No Strength without Struggle” (video), Gospel Library.

Quiet reflection time. Taking time to think, ponder, reflect, or write can lead to inspiration. It can help us see how the doctrine or principles of the gospel relate to our lives. When you teach others, give them time to reflect and write their impressions. This can also increase their willingness to share their thoughts and feelings with others.

1 Nephi 19:22–24; 20–22

I can “liken all scriptures” to myself.

Because the scriptures were written so long ago, it might seem like they aren’t relevant to us today. But Nephi knew better. “I did liken all scriptures unto us,” he said, “that it might be for our profit and learning” (1 Nephi 19:23). This is one reason Nephi found so much spiritual power in the scriptures.

Consider questions like the following as you read 1 Nephi 20–22:

1 Nephi 20:1–9.What do these verses teach about the people in Isaiah’s time? What do you find that applies to you?

1 Nephi 20:17–22.What do these verses teach about how Heavenly Father led the people of Isaiah’s time? How does He invite you to follow Him?

What else do you find in 1 Nephi 20–22 that you can “liken” to yourself?

For more ideas, see this month’s issues of the Liahona and For the Strength of Youth magazines.

Ideas for Teaching Children

1 Nephi 16:10, 28–29; 18:8–13, 20–22

When I keep the commandments, the Lord guides me.

  • If you have a compass, a map, or something else that helps us find our way, you could show it to your children. This could be a good way to begin a discussion about the Liahona, which you can read about in 1 Nephi 16:10, 28–29. What are some reasons a compass or map might not work? Why did the Liahona sometimes not work for Lehi’s family? (see 1 Nephi 18:9–12, 20–22). What has Heavenly Father given us today to guide us back to Him?

  • To help your children apply what they learn about the Liahona in 1 Nephi 16:10, 26–31; 18:8–22, you could invite them to think about an important or difficult decision. What has God given us to guide us today that works like the Liahona? (See, for example, Alma 37:38–44.) Consider sharing a personal experience in which Heavenly Father guided you.

1 Nephi 16:21–32

I can be a good example to my family.

  • As you read 1 Nephi 16:21–32 together, help your children discover how Nephi’s example blessed his family (see also the video “The Lord Guides Lehi’s Journey” [Gospel Library]). This could lead to a discussion about how we could be like Nephi. Invite your children to plan one thing they can do to be a good influence on other family members.

1 Nephi 17:7–19; 18:1–4

Heavenly Father can help me do difficult things.

  • Children love telling stories. You could invite them to help you tell the story of Nephi being commanded to build a boat (see 1 Nephi 17:7–19; 18:1–4; see also “Chapter 7: Building the Ship,” in Book of Mormon Stories, 21–22; or the video “The Lord Instructs Nephi to Build a Ship” [Gospel Library]). They could also sing together the second verse of “Nephi’s Courage” (Children’s Songbook, 120–21). What helped Nephi have courage when his brothers mocked him for trying to build the boat?

  • Nephi did not know how to build a boat, so he relied on instruction from the Lord. After reading 1 Nephi 18:1 with you, your children could complete this week’s activity page. As they do, talk with them about how Heavenly Father can help us do hard things, just as He helped Nephi.

For more ideas, see this month’s issue of the Friend magazine.

Nephi and his family on the boat

They Did Treat Me with Much Harshness, by Walter Rane