by Dr. Scott Turansky, National Center for Biblical Parenting
The most important task for any parent is to help their children develop a strong faith and clear moral direction. But how do you do that when you have to get the clothes cleaned up and the dishes put away? Most parents find themselves to be very busy helping kids with homework, taxiing them around to various activities, and simply accomplishing life.
The key to accomplishing what really matters remains in the schedule is to be intentional. If you plan spiritual training into your schedule it will happen. If you wait to see if there’s any time left, you’ll likely miss out. By making spiritual training a priority, you’ll see kids develop a stronger personal faith—and it will affect so many things in their lives.
Attitudes about self, others, and life in general are all affected by spiritual training. It’s interesting that many parents are concerned with the attitudes their children demonstrate. A “me first” attitude, or an “I don’t care” attitude, or a “don’t interrupt me while I’m on my video game” attitude frustrates parents. Kids need a steady stream of values training so they develop healthy attitudes about life. Parents who take time to provide that input reap positive results.
Significant conversations with kids are a treasure for parents. Sometimes those dialogues happen spontaneously and other times they are planned. Bible input builds into those conversations—passing along values and building convictions. Working faith out in life is a key element of a child’s growth and development. But it’s hard to work it out if we don’t receive basic instruction about what God teaches.
When it comes to passing faith on to kids, it’s often best to focus in four basic areas. First: children must know who God is— the Fatherhood of God, Jesus’ life, and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. Second, Christian kids need to understand who they are—reborn with a heart where God chooses to live—and with a sin nature. Third, it’s important for children to understand God’s plan. He created the world, initiated a plan for salvation, and has a specific purpose for each person—including them! Fourth, kids need to understand that the Bible is their authority for life. It’s not about how they feel or even about what they think. The question is, “What does the Bible say about my life today?”
Discipleship is God’s plan for passing the faith on to the next generation. Most effective discipleship takes place in the home. Good theology results in good practice and it starts on a simple level as children learn more about God and the Bible. Take time to read God’s Word yourself and help your kids dig into the Scriptures themselves. The best resource to help parents teach their kids the basics of God’s Word is the Pro2gé SUMMIT series from DiscipleLand. If you haven’t seen it yet, check it out!
Most parents KNOW they are the primary people in a child’s life to pass on values to their kids. Many parents WANT to cultivate their child’s faith. DiscipleLand’s Pro2gé series helps parents DO it! -Dr. Scott Turansky, National Center for Biblical Parenting