How Can I Teach My Kids About God?
As a parent how can we train our kids to learn about God and to grow in their relationship with Him?
Psalms 127:3 tells us that children are a heritage and blessing from God.
Proverbs 22:6 says: Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.
So parents have the privilege and duty of being temporary stewards of their children’s lives. Part of our role as parents is to train and teach our kids about God and how they can relate with God on a daily basis.
So how can we practically teach our kids about God? How can we practically train them to relate with God every day?
1. Strategically Include Scripture In Your Children’s Lives
Everyday children encounter different situations as they are growing up. The more they learn, the more questions they have; The older they grow, the bigger the challenges or problems they encounter.
As a parent it’s important to be right there with your kids every step of the way by giving your children Biblical counsel and advice. Therefore use everyday situations with your child and find opportunities to include the Scriptures and talk about God.
For example, perhaps your son is worried about an exam he will be writing at school. As a parent you have an opportunity to talk to your child about what the Bible says about worry or anxiety and train him how to Biblically deal with anxiety in his life (Philippians 4:6-7). As a parent you can also take it a step further and pray with your child about his anxieties and the specific issues that make him anxious.
Or perhaps your daughter has issues with being confident or is facing peer pressure from friends. As a parent you have an opportunity to encourage her and mention what the Bible says about courage and how to trust in God during times of fear (Joshua 1:9).
The principle is that for the many issues, questions and challenges that children may encounter, the Bible is the appropriate source through which we can ground our children in relation to daily living.
Therefore as parents we can train our children through everyday situations to learn to reference Scripture in their daily life and situations. You can also teach them to memorize scriptures that are specific to any particular issues, questions or challenges they’re facing.
2. Teach Your Kids To Pray Daily & Discuss Prayer Requests
Encourage your kids to talk to God. Remind your kids that God is everywhere, so they can pray anywhere. Therefore help them understand that God is always ready to listen to them irrespective of their location or external surroundings. So they can learn to pray at home; at school; as they walk outside or wherever they might be – they can understand that God is there with them.
Discuss any prayer requests which they may have and be sure to also include your own prayer requests so that they learn to pray for you as well.
Also encourage your kids to have an attitude of thanksgiving towards God and help them to realize that God isn’t just there when they only need something – but He is always available both through good times and bad times.
3. Teach Your Kids To Read The Bible
It’s important to encourage your kids to read the Bible. For example you can read a story, a passage or a verse in the Bible and have a small Bible study with them. Depending on the age group, you can buy your child a Bible with a more age appropriate Bible translation so that they find the scriptures and stories easier to understand as they are reading.
2 Timothy 3:16 says: All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness,
Deuteronomy 6:7-9 says: You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. 8 You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. 9 You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.
The principle is that as parents we have a duty to teach our kids the word of God so that His Scriptures are obeyed and passed on through the generations.
4. Teach Your Kids The Gospel
Train your kids to understand the Gospel of Jesus Christ and what He did for mankind when He was crucified on the cross and then resurrected. Teach them that salvation is only through Jesus Christ alone (John 14:6).
Teach them that Jesus Christ is the perfect model of the type of person we are meant to imitate and follow. Teach them that God is central to our daily life and that without Christ we can do nothing.
Ultimately one of the most important roles of any Christian parent, is point their son or daughter to follow Jesus Christ.
Some Helpful Parenting Tips
As a parent you wear many hats because human parenting is a model of the relationship that we have with God the Father.
So as a parent you wear the hat of mother/father, counsellor, priest, provider, friend and teacher.
As we may all know, parenting or parental guidance is a process. Parenting is a daily job from Monday to Sunday. Children are not perfect and they will always need guidance and counselling any time of the day. So our availability is of great importance to our kids.
As a parent it’s important to understand that all communication must address capacity. Therefore we must be careful not to overload our children with too much information or with lessons and counsel that is not age appropriate.
As a parent your relationship with God must be evident and exemplary to your kids. It’s also important to be one who studies the word of God so that you’re ready to teach and give a Biblical answer and guidance to your kids (2 Timothy 3:15-16).
It’s important to be patient, gentle and creative as you give parental advice and counsel to your children. So avoid being impatient or short-tempered.
Don’t be condescending toward them but respect them despite the age difference between you and your child.
Always lend a listening ear to what your kids have to say. No matter how small the issue might be to you – always learn to listen without being judgmental. So keep the communication channels open all the time and show your kids that you’re willing to listen to whatever they want to say.
Sometimes it’s not easy and your character as a parent can be tested especially when dealing with kids who can be rebellious or children who are not quick learners. Sometimes you will also make mistakes as a parent.
However with the help of God, nothing is impossible. As parents we always need to place our children in God’s hands and trust that God will keep them and guide them to the glory of Jesus Christ.