I hear somewhat frequently online complaints that it's next to impossible to teach a "meaty" lesson from the Church manuals - that it's all milk.
I taught 1 Nephi 1 & 2 in Seminary years ago, and the majority of the time ended up being spent on how the people who are not the extremes (those in the middle) generally get ignored. They are viewed as the "followers" by those who write the histories, and the leaders rarely want to talk about the followers. This was a result of the questions and comments from the students.
We also talked about how none of Lehi's kids initially believed him on their own - that Laman and Lemuel rebelled, Nephi asked the Lord and Sam believed Nephi. We then discussed how Sam seems to have been a good, sincere, righteous person - who perhaps never "knew" but rather "believed". He was not a "leader" - so his personal story wasn't deemed worthy of taking up space on the plates.
I really enjoyed the lesson, and the kids walked away from it thinking about where they fit in those categories - and understanding that it's OK to be "just" a believer who never gets mentioned in official histories.
All of that was taught from the verses suggested in the manual.
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