As we celebrated the one-year anniversary of this blog recently, I asked readers to tell me what they’d like to read more about this next year. I heard several themes, one of which was parenting and how to share your faith with your children.
I get excited to talk about this subject, because it’s regularly on my mind and an intentional practice in our home, but before we talk through our kids, may I start with you?
Imagine pouring yourself a hot cup of water to make tea. You can’t wait to drink it because it’s Darjeeling or Vanilla Chai or some calming flavor that you like. You begin walking from room to room in your house with your hot cup of tea, but because of how full it is, since you didn’t want to waste an ounce of goodness, you begin spilling the tea out of your cup onto everyone and everything you come into contact with.
I believe that’s how sharing our faith can be, whether that’s with your children, your co-workers, or complete strangers. When we spend time with the Lord, we are in a sense “filling up” with all the life-giving truth and instruction He has to offer. We “pour” ourselves water that will allow us to never thirst again and then, we walk around with it. We can’t help but spill it out of the little “cups” of our lives onto others. Do your family a favor and pour them more than a “spot of tea”; pour a whole cup!
“You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:13
Now, how do you share that with your children?
One way is by letting them hear what God is teaching you through His word. I try to spend time with the Lord before my children get up in the morning-this is the goal-sometimes it doesn’t happen. When I do, I’m more focused on the great job that lies before me that day, which is to disciple these little girls. As we go about our day, I point out ways that I see God in what we’re learning or we pray together about an issue they are dealing with. I tell them how He has changed my own sinful heart and trust that as they see real life lived out, God will draw them to Himself.
I’ve realized that they find comfort in seeing me read my Bible. They often ask me about what I’m reading, which is an opportunity I don’t even have to seek out. Other times, we share devotions at the kitchen table or at bedtime. Do what works for your family: breakfast, lunch, dinner or bedtime. There’s no magical formula or “right way”, but don’t miss out on actually sharing from God’s word. Many friends have the “Jesus Storybook Bible”; “Every story whispers His name” is the theme. How beautiful! Use whatever tool you like best, just point your kids to Christ!
But what if I don’t know the Bible well enough to do that??
Great question! When my husband first became a Christian at age 18, he actually got a hold of a Children’s storybook Bible. That’s how He learned most of the “key” stories. He also spent time in the Word himself and began studying and spent loads of time (long before He was a pastor) getting to know the Lord. Through study, he began to see themes through scripture and what he didn’t understand, he sought godly counsel to find out. This began a relationship with the Lord, which ultimately led my husband to give his life to “connect people to Jesus for life change,” which is now the mission statement of our church.
As the Lord speaks to you, you’ll begin to “spill” that out onto your children and others.
How do I get my kids to memorize scripture?
That depends on your child’s learning style. One of the ways in which we’ve gotten our children to hide God’s word in their heart is through song. Since homeschooling our children, I’ve learned that anything and I do mean anything-Science, Math skip counting and even history sentences-can be memorized with ease when set to music. So, why not God’s Word? I’ve made up my own tunes that are now family favorites that I sing to my children during bedtime. Recently, I’ve even heard my big girls singing these songs to our baby. Love!
Sometimes, for penmanship practice, I have them write scripture verses. A wonderful book we’ve used this year in homeschooling that incorporates scripture is “A Reason for Handwriting“. We’ve also downloaded scripture-based songs from iTunes. I’ve recently learned of “Seeds Family Worship” from a friend. They have several volumes of songs encouraging scripture memory, which sing truths like “the word of the Lord stands forever” based off 1 Peter 1:25 or “don’t be anxious about anything” from Philippians 4:6-7. My kids love the upbeat music. I just love that the truth, which they will need to recall in life is being tucked into their hearts and minds.
The possibilities are endless for how you can incorporate more of God’s truth into your home. Just remember that when life gets hard as your children grow, they can’t recall what they do not know. So keep the truth before them!
I have hidden your word in my heart
that I might not sin against you.
Please encourage someone else today and “share” this blog.