We can strengthen our families, communities, and nations by studying “The Family: AProclamation to the World” and by following its precepts. One way to study the proclamation is one paragraph at a time.
The second paragraph of the proclamation states: “All human beings – male and female – are created in the image of God. Each is a beloved spirit son or daughter of heavenly parents, and, as such, each has a divine nature and destiny. Gender is an essential characteristic of individual premortal, mortal, and eternal identity and purpose.”
If we study that paragraph as if we were children (as suggested by President Henry B. Eyring), we will gain much understanding of the doctrine presented in those three sentences. The first sentence tells us that we are not only created by God, but we are created in his image. We look like God. Therefore, God looks like us. He has a head, torso, arms, and legs. He has two eyes, two ears, a nose, and a mouth. Even little children can understand how children look like their father.
The second sentence tells us that we are the children of God. We are His beloved sons and daughters. He is the Father of our spirits. As such, He loves us more than anyone on earth loves us. He watches over us and blesses us whenever He can. We have the potential to become as He is because we each have a “divine nature and destiny.”
The third sentence tells us that our gender is eternal. We were male or female long before we were mortally conceived. We were identified as male or female in our pre-earth lives, and we will be identified as male or female in our eternal lives no matter what we do here on earth about our gender.
President Boyd K. Packer, late President of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, states: “We know that gender was set in the premortal world. `The spirit and the body are the soul of man’ (Doctrine and Covenants 88:15). This matter of gender is of great concern to the Brethren, as are all matters of morality.
“A few of you may have felt or been told that you were born with troubling feelings and that you are not guilty if you act on those temptations. Doctrinally we know that if that were true, your agency would have been erased, and that cannot happen. You always have a choice to follow the promptings of the Holy Ghost and live a morally pure and chaste life, one filled with virtue."
As you study the second paragraph of the proclamation, you may want to share what you learn in a family home evening. This site has a wonderful family home evening program all outlined with lesson, music, activity, and refreshments. I hope you will use this outline and strengthen your family, community, and nation by understanding the doctrine that marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God and that the family is central to Heavenly Father’s plan for the happiness of all His children.