When I was a young mom, I was also a new growing Christian. I did not have a lot of Bible knowledge. I had not been to seminary. The only college education I had by that point was two years of Accounting. I was ill-equipped to teach anyone the Bible, at least from the world’s standards. Nonetheless, I had a hungry heart to know Jesus, to understand his word, and to teach it to my children. However, even in all my passion, I didn’t know where to begin, or what to do.
How many of you feel that way when it comes to teaching your kids about Jesus? You don’t feel prepared. You are fearful you’ll teach the wrong thing. Or your kids will ask a question, and you are afraid you won’t know the answer.
Outsourcing this responsibility is tempting. Maybe you have thought, “Let’s allow the church to do this. I mean, after all, aren’t they the experts?” Sadly, when kids only go to church for 90 minutes (at best) a week, this is hardly enough to make them into followers of Jesus.
Let me tell you this: What is worse than your kids only having 90 minutes of Bible instruction a week is you being robbed of the joy experienced in sharing God’s word with your children. Why farm that out, when you can be a part of your child’s salvation story!
I share in my book, Deep & Wide, about the time God showed me my first step in helping my kids know Jesus as their Savior:
“When my son, Matthew, was close to two and half years old, my daughter, Ashleigh, was born. With my passion for Jesus and my heartbeat for each of my children to know Him, I still had much to learn about being that parent God desired for me. While I loved Jesus, my Bible reading was sporadic at this time in my life. God wanted more of me so in His plan to draw me closer to Him, He used my children, particularly, my daughter to get me started.
Ashleigh was an easy baby in the sense that she slept well; she didn’t cry much; she cooed and was a very peaceful child. But the one thing she liked to do was wake up, like clockwork, at 5:30 every morning. I got up with her, fed her, and cooed with her every early am. I was enamored by the creation God had created through my husband and me. Going back to sleep was not in the plan for a couple of hours, so as I laid her next to me on the couch, I began to think, ‘I could read my Bible during this time and earn my PHD. (Praising Him Daily).’ Thus, began a fervent, consistent, and vibrant relationship with my God” (Cramsey, 2013, pg. 19-20).
In my recent post, “In What Way Do Miracles Depend on You,” we read Mark 6:34-44. When it came time for the crowds to eat, the disciples worried. They didn’t have the resources to feed so many. Jesus said to his anxious disciples, “You give them something to eat.”
This one command reminds me so much of the calling on our life as parents. Moses in Deuteronomy 6:5-7 shares with the parents of his day, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. These words that I am giving you today are to be in your heart. Repeat them to your children. Talk about them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.”
“Repeat them to your children” is just another way of saying, “You give them something to eat.” Like the disciples, I didn’t feel like I had the knowledge needed to teach my children the Bible. To be honest, I didn’t, but I did have the resource sitting right in front of me – my Bible. Similarly, the disciples had Jesus right there with them!
Notice in the first part of the Deuteronomy passage Moses says, “These words that I am giving you today are to be in YOUR heart.” We can’t give our children something we don’t have; secondly, we don’t need it all at one time to start giving it to them.
My first step to helping my kids become followers of Jesus was to read the word myself. My second was to share with my kids what God was teaching me. As I grew, they grew. We were on this journey together!
The how and the ways I connected with my children were simple. In my next post, I will share practical ways my children and I grew in the word together. (So, please come back and check out this upcoming post!)
Until then, make sure you are spending time with God. As you do, your children will draw from you a rich and full treasure of truth. Parents, you can do this! I know, because I did, and I’m a mom just like you.