So many of us deeply want to do whatever God wants us to do to help our child understand the gospel of Jesus, and come to Him for salvation. Yet many are wondering where to start—what tools to use, how to bring spiritual things up in the home. My prayer is that one or more of the five things I will mention will be of help to open your child’s eyes to the wonder of God and His wonderful Word!
Your Own Walk With God—Charlotte Mason, a wonderful educator in the 1800’s, said to teach your children in the areas where you are growing—that is what you will be the most passionate about conveying to your child. For example, God did a great work in my husband and I about purity in courtship/dating relationships as college students. Therefore, before Carly was 3 years old, we had bought the book “The Princess and the Kiss” by Jennie Bishop, and we have already had tons of discussions and prayers about waiting for God’s best.
Using Scripture as You Discipline, Answer Questions, In “Normal” Conversation—It is so important to allow God and His Word to permeate your home—from your speech to your actions to your reactions. Let your home be a safe place where it is not awkward to talk about Jesus, where your children know you are expecting them to be curious about who God is, who created all this stuff…what we are all doing here on earth anyway. If two siblings are fighting, let them know that Jesus wants us to be kind to one another. If someone is always moaning about their responsibilities, tell them the Bible says to “do everything without arguing or complaining”. (And not in a holier-than-thou tone, but in a teachable way, as if they’ve never thought about that before). If the weather is beautiful, comment on how God sure did make today beautiful in our town! Talk about with young children how disobeying parents is sin, and sin is yucky! As they get older, explain how Jesus died to pay for our yucky sin. And, when you as a parent handles something in a sinful way, tell your children you were wrong, maybe how what you did is not pleasing to God, and ask for their forgiveness! They need to see how to walk with God and each other the right way.
Lots of Singing!!
Music is definitely one of the best and easiest ways to convey spiritual truth to your children! From children’s songs to old hymnals to praise music from the Psalms, children will usually eat music up! Especially if they see us enjoying it and we all have fun with it!
Praying with and for your child
Try to make prayer a very regular part of life, so they see talking with God about every area of life as normal as breathing. Also, you are bringing them before the Almighty, so He will be working on them as well!!
Great Resources to Check Out
- The Beginner’s Bible Treasury of Stories, Old and New Testaments by Don and Chris Wise—great place to start. Each story is about 10 pages with bright illustrations that hold kids’ attention during a longer reading then they may be used to.
- Early Reader’s Bible—Has short Bible stories with “something to ask” and “something to do” at the end of each one.
- NIV Bible—Sometimes, best to read straight from the Source!
- Great Hymns of the Faith from an old hymnal (“The One Year Book of Hymns” devotional is great too b/c you can talk about the people who wrote the songs)
- “Storykeepers” Videos (can be ordered online)—our 3-year-old quotes movies a lot, so this is great because he is quoting things Jesus said!
- “A Catechism for Boys and Girls”(found at Lifeway)—GREAT discussion starter! And feel free to take it slow so they’ll really grasp each biblical truth behind the question.
- “The Princess and the Kiss” by Jennie Bishop (and its counterpart for boys)—great for building a biblical foundation of beliefs about male/female relationships.