Do You Desire To Bring Your Child Into The Kingdom?

It's hard enough to be a Christian parent in this world. How do we combat the forces of evil while at the same time raise our children to desire to walk in God's light? By seeking His face, His Word and inspiration from each other as we stumble through this parenting process together. You will find all the instruction, encouragement and resources you need right here at The Greatest Mission Trip You'll Ever Take to help you be the most effective witness to your child that God would have you be. Look around and come back often. Let's learn together.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Overcoming The Last Four Excuses

If you find that any of the last four excuses for not reading the Bible with your child apply to you, consider the following:

My child knows where I stand on salvation; I’m letting him come to his own decision.

  • Do not risk your child’s salvation on assumptions. They’re oftentimes wrong.
  • Your child cannot be forced to make a decision for Christ. However, do not confuse hands-off parenting techniques with your God-given responsibility to train and
    disciple your child.

I don’t feel the Bible is relevant enough for today’s youth.

  • Evaluate what your faith is based on. If it’s not based on the truths, covenants and practices of the Bible, determine the reality of your beliefs. The truths of the Bible
    are universal, crossing all gender, race, cultural and age spectrums.
  • Evaluate whether you’re reading and applying the truths of the Bible in a relevant way for
    yourself. If the Bible is not yet relevant for you, you’re not going to convince your child that it is either.
  • Consult with your pastor, church youth leader or another Christian with biblical knowledge to learn how the Bible is applicable for today’s youth.
  • Shop for a Bible translation that includes interesting teaching tips, study notes and life parallels in the text. Ask your pastor, church youth leader or Christian bookstore
    manager to recommend one for you.
I’m afraid my child would rebel if I tried to start now.
  • Call a family meeting, explain your desire to be in obedience to God’s commandment in raising your child, and ask your child's forgiveness for not having done it sooner. Your child may still not fully buy into the start of a new tradition, but the foundation for
    beginning will be laid and your child would have a hard time countering that approach without looking incredibly selfish or shameful.
  • Start slow. Have a plan of where you’re going to start reading. Consult your pastor about where a good place would be to begin.
  • Incorporate your child’s learning strengths into your Bible reading. Visual learners may want to sit beside you and read along or read along in their own Bible. Hands-on learners, who typically have a hard time sitting still, may appreciate you letting them color or doodle while you read.
  • Keep it short, at least initially. You may need to keep it short for quite some time, until the habit is developed and the expectation set.
I’ve never been quite sure how to go about it.
  • There’s no one way that fits every family situation or need. In addition, family situations and needs evolve over time, sometimes necessitating being flexible with your approach. It will work better if you remain open to suggestions from your child and be willing to adapt as needed. These suggestions will often come up in conversation as you and your child develop a relationship with God’s Word.
  • Consult the resources around you for ideas. Obviously this blog will get you started, but talk to people, look at teaching materials in your church for ideas, search the internet. For example, if your child is very young, you may want to start with a picture Bible and concentrate on the life of Jesus along with the well-known stories of the Old Testament. You may find coloring sheets or books to go along with the reading to enhance the learning.
  • Determine what your goals are. What do you hope to accomplish with your child at his age? Your goals will adapt over time as your child’s ability to understand grows, and as he makes any decision for Christ in the process. Your approach to a 13- year old who doesn’t know Christ as his Savior will be different from a 13-year old who does.

We’ll examine some of these areas in a little more depth in future postings.

Related Articles
8 Excuses Christian Parents Make
Overcoming The First Four Excuses
Step By Step To Family Devotions - The Series

1 comment:

David said...

Hey Deb, Wow! Right to the point. As I look at all the work it took to get 3 out of 4 saved and involved in missions, firmness is definitely required.

I had to take them on trips myself, nurture relationships with their leaders and provide insight to help them find friends. They called it meddling, but they have pretty much stayed the course.