Self-Reliance
My Path for Self-Reliance
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“My Path for Self-Reliance,” My Path for Self-Reliance (2016)

“My Path for Self-Reliance,” My Path

My Path for Self-Reliance

Getting Started

Facilitator:

  1. Begin with a prayer (and hymn, if desired).

  2. A member of the stake presidency may provide a 3- to 5-minute introduction and testimony.

  3. A member of the stake self-reliance committee invites the entire group to open their booklets to page 2 and follow along as the committee member reads the three paragraphs below.

Welcome to this My Path for Self-Reliance devotional. The purpose of this meeting is to help you understand why and how you can become more self-reliant. Instead of one speaker presenting to the group, we will be discussing principles in small groups, reading together, pondering, and writing our thoughts.

The most important part of this experience will be the promptings you receive through the Spirit as the Lord shows you what you can do to become more like Him. We encourage you to write these impressions as you receive them and then to act on them.

At the end of this meeting, you will be invited to choose a self-reliance group that can help you achieve one of the following:

  • Find a job or improve your current employment

  • Better manage your personal and family finances

  • Choose an education path and succeed in school

  • Grow your small business

But for now, let’s get to know each other a little better.

Facilitator: Ask participants at each table to take a moment and briefly introduce themselves to others at their table. Each introduction should take no more than 30 or 40 seconds.

What Is Self-Reliance?

Read:

The aim of the self-reliance initiative is to help individuals help themselves become self-reliant. Self-reliance is more than having a good job, food storage, or money in the bank. Self-reliance is “the ability, commitment, and effort to provide for the spiritual and temporal necessities of life for self and family. As members become self-reliant, they are also better able to serve and care for others,” and work is enthroned as a ruling principle in their lives (Handbook 2: Administering the Church [2010], 6.1.1).

Discuss:

What are characteristics of a self-reliant individual? Would self-reliant individuals rely on government or Church assistance if they could instead work for what they need themselves?

Self-Reliance Is Essential for Salvation

Read:

President Thomas S. Monson taught: “Let us be self-reliant and independent. Salvation can be obtained on no other principle” (“Guiding Principles of Personal and Family Welfare,” Ensign, Sept. 1986, 3; quoting Marion G. Romney, in Conference Report, Oct. 1976, 167).

Discuss:

As you become more self-reliant, how are you becoming like Heavenly Father?

The Spiritual and Temporal Are One

Read:

President Dieter F. Uchtdorf taught, “Like two sides of a coin, the temporal and spiritual are inseparable” (“Providing in the Lord’s Way,” Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2011, 53). In the scriptures, the Lord declared, “All things unto me are spiritual, and not at any time have I given unto you a law which was temporal” (D&C 29:34).

Discuss:

How can finding a job and earning a living be both a temporal and spiritual matter?

How Temporally and Spiritually Self-Reliant Are You?

How Do I Become More Self-Reliant?

1. The Lord Can Help You Become Self-Reliant

Watch:

“I Will Provide for My Saints,” available at srs.lds.org/videos. (No video? Continue reading.)

2. The Scriptures Can Help You Become Self-Reliant

Read:

The Lord helps us in many ways as we exercise faith in Him. One of the tools He has given us is the scriptures. The prophet Nephi taught, “Feast upon the words of Christ; for behold, the words of Christ will tell you all things what ye should do” (2 Nephi 32:3).

Discuss:

When have the scriptures provided personal guidance in your life?

Ponder:

As I seek to become more self-reliant, what can I do to receive more personal guidance from the scriptures?

3. Joining a Self-Reliance Group Can Help You Get Started

Read:

To help you become more self-reliant, you have an opportunity to join a self-reliance group in your ward or stake. A self-reliance group is a group of individuals who meet together to learn and apply practical skills for employment, education, and finances.

Self-reliance groups typically meet each week for two hours over a three-month period. Meetings follow the same process as this devotional. Group members read and discuss together, complete activities, and individually ponder so the Holy Ghost can inspire them how to act.

A self-reliance group is different from most Church classes. There is no teacher! Instead, the group works as a council with the Holy Ghost as the teacher. Group members counsel together as they learn new skills, solve problems, commit to do things during the week, and report their progress.

Group members also develop strong friendships and feel God’s love as they work together. By joining a group, not only will you benefit, but you can be of great service in helping others on their path to self-reliance!

Watch:

“The Power of the Group,” available at srs.lds.org/videos. (No video? Continue reading.)

Facilitator: If available, invite someone who has previously participated in a self-reliance group to briefly share (up to three minutes) his or her experience.

Which Self-Reliance Group Should You Join?

Watch:

“Choosing a Self-Reliance Group,” available at srs.lds.org/videos. (No video? Read the group summaries on page 11.)

Group Summaries

In each of the four self-reliance groups, members study and practice principles from the booklet My Foundation for Self-Reliance. This is done at the beginning of each group meeting, as learning these foundational principles and skills helps group members progress temporally and spiritually, regardless of the chosen path. Group members will gain greater faith in Jesus Christ’s power to provide for them. They will also practice life skills, including time management, communication, and problem solving.

Find a Better Job

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Find a Better Job, English

For those who are looking for work or a better job. Group members will learn to identify opportunities, network, present themselves professionally, and prepare for job interviews. They will also set goals for contacts and interviews.

Personal Finances

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Personal Finances for Self-Reliance

For those who want better control over their finances. Group members will learn how to eliminate debt, protect against financial hardship, and invest for the future. They will create a financial plan and follow a budget. Spouses are encouraged to attend together.

Education for Better Work

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Education for Better Work - Pilot Version

For those who need additional education or training to get a job. Group members will research, create, and present career and education plans. They will also spend time each week practicing skills that will help them be more effective learners.

Starting and Growing My Business

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Starting and Growing My Business - US/Canada manual

For those who already have a business or resources to start a business. Group members learn the traits and skills of successful small business owners. They practice record keeping, marketing, and cash management. They will talk with business owners, customers, and suppliers and develop plans to grow their business.

Choose a Group

A member of the self-reliance committee will now help you organize into self-reliance groups. Once you have selected your group, write down the following information.

My Self-Reliance Group Meetings

Day:

Time:

Location:

Facilitator name:

Phone number:

Facilitator: The presiding authority may want to share a brief testimony.

End with prayer.

How to Hold a My Path Devotional

Instructions for a Stake Self-Reliance Committee

Before the Devotional:

  • Review and complete this booklet yourself.

  • Order enough My Path for Self-Reliance booklets for participants (store.lds.org).

  • Have enough pens or pencils for participants.

  • Set up enough round tables in the cultural hall.

  • Have members of the self-reliance committee at each door to greet those who attend and to join participants at the tables.

  • Invite someone who has participated in a previous group to share his or her experience in the devotional if possible (see page 9).

  • Visit srs.lds.org/report to download the Devotional Report Form to be completed during the devotional.

During the Devotional:

  • Have a committee member at each table to encourage group participation and keep things on track.

  • Remind participants to silence their cell phones.

  • Consider starting the devotional with a song, a prayer, and a brief welcome (3–5 minutes) from a priesthood leader or member of the stake self-reliance committee.

  • Follow the material as it is written in the booklet.

  • Have each group facilitator write the name and phone number of each person who joined his or her group. At the first group meeting, each facilitator will complete a more detailed group registration form.

  • If the stake covers a large geographical area, the stake committee may consider splitting up groups according to where group members are located.

After the Devotional: