Helping Our Kids See God
"Jesus said, ‘Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.’" Matthew 19:14 (NIV)
My kids have always been fascinated when I’ve shared things I remember from my childhood. Those memories are especially meaningful when I point out how the stories relate to my life now.
So much about our stories can be traced back to God working in our lives, and when we share them, our kids can see evidence that Jesus is real and intimately involved with us.
What’s even more surprising is that they can later recall them in surprising detail! It’s amazing how well they remember the life lessons that I tie to the stories I tell.
While it may be difficult for a child to recall a passage of Scripture they just read, most can recall in specific detail the accounts of a story.
For instance, I love to tell them of the time my stepdad brought home a hand-me-down typewriter from his office. I placed my hands on the keys and wondered what it would be like to type pages of legible words. I loved the rap-tap-tap sound it made and envisioned myself finishing the final page of a book. I didn’t know enough words at that point to write an entire book, but one day I would.
That story allowed me to point out that even back then, Jesus was preparing me for my calling as an author. And although my kids may not understand their own callings yet, by seeing me live out mine and knowing that the Lord put it in my heart at a young age, they understand the reality that God does indeed have a plan for their lives. This gives them access to Divine Truth.
Jesus wanted children to have access to Him, as He said, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these." (Matthew 19:14)
Though my kids haven’t experienced all the ways God’s revealed Himself to me, I can use my story to teach them of things to come … if they are willing to take hold of Him for themselves.
Author Dr. Tim Kimmel, in his book Why Christian Kids Rebel, explains the number one reason children walk away from the faith is because they never see it make a real difference in the lives of their parents.
And I don’t want that to be the case in my family.
So now, not only do I trace the hand of God in my past stories, I also constantly look for ways to exemplify Jesus today.
I point out answers to things we’ve prayed about.
I show them the many ways God provides and make sure they know where credit is due.
I live my faith out loud so they cannot miss that Christ is the center of our home.
He has become too real to deny.
I pray my kids will start collecting their own stories of experiencing God. Then they can share the reality of Christ’s presence with their friends today and with their own children in the future. Yes, indeed, let the children have access to Jesus!
Dear Lord, help me be a teacher of Your truth. As You continue to write the story of my life, reveal Yourself to me so I can tell my family of Your faithfulness. I want them to see the reality of Christ living in me and the difference You make in my life. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
Deuteronomy 4:9, "Only be careful, and watch yourselves closely so that you do not forget the things your eyes have seen or let them fade from your heart as long as you live. Teach them to your children and to their children after them." (NIV)
Psalm 145:4, "One generation shall praise Your works to another, And shall declare Your mighty acts." (NKJV)
REFLECT AND RESPOND:
Review the list of suggestions Lysa gave for what you can do to help your kids see God. Choose to live out at least one of those in your home this week.