In last week’s post, I reminded you that “the most precious, life-giving parenting resource available comes in the form of God’s Holy Word, and that “God eagerly waits for you to sit at his feet, wanting to give you the refreshment you need for this lifelong calling called parenthood.” Today I want to share with you how you can encourage your children to want to sit at the feet of Jesus for themselves!
When my children were very young, I began to become concerned that they learn the importance of reading God’s Word, so I decided to ask a friend for advice. “Bible before breakfast!” she told me “That’s the rule in our house. No Bible. No breakfast!” Her children were young and she was sincerely attempting to train her children to be in the Word every day.
I came home and shared this with my husband. After some discussion, we decided that it was not the direction we wanted to go. Brian reminded me that our desire was that our children grow into their own walk with God, and it wasn’t something that could be forced. We needed to pray for it to come from their own heart that hungers for the Word.
What can a parent do to encourage their children to be in the Word of God for themselves?
- Pray. Pray that God will open your children’s eyes to the need they have for a Savior, that He would create within them a desire to know Him, and that He will open their eyes and ears to what HE wants them to see and hear in the season they are in.
- Set the example. Make it a priority to be in the Word and nurture your relationship with God. You can set the tone for the home by being eager to be in the Word and fighting for that time yourself.
- Read the Bible with your children. Have time in the Word as a family or with each child individually, sharing in an age appropriate manner. Allow them to take part in reading, discussion, and sharing what they are thinking and feeling. Remember that they are in a process of learning, and any level of understanding should be celebrated! It means God is doing a work in them!
- Look for age appropriate resources. Provide age appropriate resources for them to use, making them available for them to use when they are ready. Invite them to bring their own Bibles, notebooks, devotionals etc, and join you as you have your own time in the Word. You can even give them their own hot drink or snack, and make it a special time!
- PRAY! Our children grow at different rates. Although we wish we could make them understand God’s Word, want to read it for themselves, and have hearts that desire to please God, we must wait for God to do His work. For some that will take years, for others it will happen at a very young age. (My daughter was very young when she began showing an interest, my son was in his late teens!)
If we want our children to have to a strong walk with God, the best thing we can do is pray for them, love them well, set an authentic (not perfect) example, and then wait for God to do the same miraculous work in their heart that He has done in our own!
**Gina is the manager and mentor at The BoyRaiser Tribe! Details about The BoyRaiser Tribe can be found HERE! Come and join us! We’d love to have you!
**Gina has a newly updated book entitled: “Grace Gifts”. You can purchase your copy at amazon.com!
“As parents we can be tempted to look for methods of parenting, when what we really need is principles. The principles found in “Grace Gifts” can be carried out a hundred different ways. They can actually be custom-fit to your particular family. “Grace Gifts” is a short book, is perfect for busy moms, and is filled with ideas and practical ways that can help your children understand God’s grace. It is one of those books you will want to reference over and over again.“
Thank you so much ma’am for sharing these revelations with us. They are so practical and I’m seeing results already with my eyes of faith! Prayer is THE KEY.,. there’s no issue that cannot be handled with prayer. God bless you.
Amen to that! Prayer IS the key! Thank you for reading! I’m so grateful it encouraged you!
Thank you for this honest and realist post. Prayer puts our trust back in Gods plan. It’s easy to get wrapped up in “I should be doing more, something, or even: I’m failing!” There is nothing better than what God already has planned. Lead by example and with loving patience. Thank you ❤️
Yes! Amen! And we never, ever stop needing that reminder! No matter how old our children are! Thank you for your encouragement!
Love especially 1 and 5! I know God is wanting a relationship with them as they are engaging so much in our world today. I pray for them to want to know God and to see Him as the “first relationship” . I also am trying to be a witness with my prayer time, bible reading and the way I use my faith community to enhance my spiritual life. Mine are teens, boy (19) and daughters (21 and 15). I am always bringing up Jesus, God and different saints casually in our conversations. I also started this year as I say goodbye to them as they leave for school or work: “Go be Jesus!”
I love that! “Go be Jesus!” Love it! Great idea! Thank you for sharing!
I’ve always done devotions with the kids in some way or another. I keep praying every morning for their hearts to be open. I do see small glimpses of God working in them. This summer we chose to read and listen to Keys for Kids which is perfect for my kids ages. And I even gave them Bibles so I could teach them to look up Scripture.
Great job, Shonda! I love Keys for Kids! My kids listened to that when they were young!!