This guest post for our monthly Let The Children Come feature is by Kelli LaFramboise.
Raising kids is hard. Raising them right — that seems to be even harder. And everyone, yes, everyone has an opinion on how to do it. There are many well meaning blogs and Pinterest boards full of ideas on how to get your children in the word of God — or better yet, how to get the Word of God into your children. And there is nothing wrong with most of these ideas. I’m sure they work wonderfully for their authors and their families. And I say if they work well for you, too, go for it.
But I have to be honest, I very seldom run across an idea online that will work consistently for my family. I haven’t found a Bible study technique that works perfectly for all of us. The ones that come close seem to only work for a short period of time and then I’m off looking for the latest shining trick to keep everyone engaged. And I think I may know why….
Everything I find online or in books or even at church is NOT my primary resource for filling my children with God’s word. God’s word is the primary resource, everything else is supplemental. Remembering to turn to God’s word first when it comes to teaching and instructing my children is instrumental in keeping our daily, moment-by-moment faith authentic.
The following is my favorite verse when it comes to teaching my children how to love their Lord and Saviour:
You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength . And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates (Deuteronomy 6:5-9 NKJV, emphasis mine).
God’s word, His gospel message, is simple and He reveals it to whoever He desires no matter how young or old they may be. I don’t believe that He expects us as parents to fancy it up with stressful craft projects, strenuous Bible study routines, or overly-complicated anything. Now, if craft projects and the like work well for you, if you and your family find them fun and helpful, by all means have at it. Just don’t forget this: God wants us talking to our children continually about His love for us and the great lengths that He has gone to show us His grace.
Every moment of life — even those before and after the well-planned learning activity is complete — is an opportunity to point our children to the work of the Cross.
But God demonstrates His own love towards us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8 NKJV, emphasis mine).
We don’t have to plan or stress or agonize about getting our children to understand and remember God’s word. We simply need to allow the Holy Spirit to lead day by day and remember that we are not responsible for the salvation of our children — Jesus is.
Now, all that said, I do want to share with you two supplemental resource that may help you and your children fall deeper in love with Christ because of His grace.
- The Jesus Storybook Bible is my favorite children’s Bible. In fact, I don’t think it even should be classified as a children’s Bible –family Bible is more like it. The authors have written it in such away that every story, whether in the New or Old Testament, point to the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. While reading this to my children I have found myself in tears multiple times because I have simply been overwhelmed by God’s grace.
- Give Them Grace is another book that I think is worth the time to read. I haven’t finished every chapter yet, but the theme that I have picked up is this: Every moment is a moment to point our children to their need — all our need — for God’s grace.
No matter what resources you choose to use or not use, remember this: you have the Holy Spirit. He is here to guide and teach you. You are not alone as you parent the precious souls that have been entrusted to you. Rely and trust in Him because He loves your children more than you ever could.
Only by grace,