So many times at church and in ministry circles, we talk about how important it is for children that faith is talked about in the home. And it is (very important). But have you ever considered how important it is for YOU, the parent or caregiver, that faith is discussed at home.
Consider these 5 reasons why you need to talk about your faith with your kids
- You NEED to experience the narratives of Scripture again for the very first time.
Sure you’ve heard the story of Daniel and the Lion’s Den, David and Goliath, and Joshua and Jericho a hundred times. But you know who hasn’t? Your kids! And you have the privilege of sharing it with them maybe for the first time. Which means, you can show them in each story, how God is working and showing His love, and maybe that’s exactly what you need to hear too.
For a great resource to do this, consider The Jesus Storybook Bible,which has ministered to me at least as much as it has to the kids I’ve read it to.
- You NEED to hear how your child hears God speak to them.
I absolutely love asking kids questions about God and hearing their beautiful answers.
So many stories come to mind, but one of the most precious to me was when my own daughter at the ripe old age of 7 asked me if God ever spoke to me. After awkwardly trying to explain the difference between God’s audible voice and His impressions in my heart and how God speaks through the Bible, I finally just shut my mouth and said, “Why, has God spoken to you?” She nodded “Yes” almost nonchalantly so I was forced to ask, “Really, what did He say?” She replied, “Well, when I was painting the other day, He said, ‘I made you to do this.’ I’m pretty sure I’m called to use my art for God.”
What a precious moment to me to know God was speaking to my little girl’s heart. It is so refreshing to hear the pure life that comes out of children when they talk about God. And in a world that often saps our souls, spiritual refreshment is much needed.
- You NEED to remember just how very much God LOVES you
If you are like me, when you talk to your kids about Jesus, you invariably let them know just how much God loves them, how He made them special and given them personalities and giftings that are unique to them, that He has a purpose for their life and a reason for their being, and that He would go to any length to let them know just how much He cares for their soul.
Hey, guess what? That’s true for you too and sometimes we big kids need to remember that is how WE are loved, forever and always.
- You NEED to remind yourself that your faith isn’t just a Sunday thing
In this world of “Go, Go, Go!” it is far to easy to compartmentalize our faith as just one more thing we “do” on Sunday mornings and maybe Wednesday nights.
Church becomes a place not the body of Christ. Fellowship becomes Sunday hugs during the greeting time at service not the community of faith. The Bible becomes the appropriate accessory when you walk through the building doors and a decoration to adorn your bookshelf the rest of the week.
Talking with our kids every day about our faith is a poignant reminder that what we are as Christians reaches far beyond the four walls of church and into every crevice of our lives. It is alive, active, and living as long as we are. Sharing that with your kids will fill both of you with meaning and purpose.
- You NEED to reflect on God with the faith of a child
“Calling to him a child, he put him in the midst of them and said, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.”
Jesus said that. His words, his heart. I truly believe the innocent faith of a child has insights into God’s heart that just can’t see.
Tonight I went to small group with five other couples, four of which were parents. Before the night was over, four of the five families with kids had shared meaningful stories with the group regarding faith conversations they had with their kids that past week. Why? Because their hearts had been touched by their kids faith. They had been drawn into their childlike faith and had a chance to experience Christ again in a new way.
So, yes, while it is true that it is important for kids to experience faith at home, it is also vitally important for you.
The home never ceases to be the primary place of faith formation just because you “grew up.”
You are still being formed to this day so make the most of it and invite Christ into the everyday moments of your family’s life. Because… you NEED it.
About the author
Christina Embree is wife to Pastor Luke, mom to three wonderful kids, and family minister at Nicholasville UMC. She is passionate about seeing churches partnering with families to encourage faith formation at home and equipping parents to disciple their kids in the faith. Currently studying Family, Youth and Children’s Ministry at Wesley Seminary, she also blogs at www.refocusministry.org and is a contributing blogger at ChildrensMinistryBlog.com.