Are you wondering what you should tell your kids in a time like this? They know something unusual is happening. They are home from school. The store shelves have never been so empty. Restaurants are closed to dining. You can’t go to the movies, the zoo, or the gym. And then there’s church. Most likely you’ll be attending church from your living room this week. What is going on? Inquiring young minds want to know.
Our go-to verse for how to disciple our own children is Deuteronomy 6:4-7. Listen, Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. 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 (CSB). This same idea is then repeated in Deuteronomy chapter 11. I’ll sum it up this way. Take every opportunity to talk with your kids. And when you do, make sure the subject is the Lord.
Talk to your kids. They already know something unusual is happening in the world. You can’t keep them from seeing that things have changed. So tell them why and then use it as an opportunity to point them to the Lord. You might say, “times are different, but the Lord promised to take care of us, so we’re trusting in Him.” Show them passages in the Bible that speak of God’s care. Passages like Matthew 6:25-34, Hebrews 13:5-6, and Romans 8:31-39.
Be real as you talk with your kids. It’s okay to let them know you’re learning and growing too. There may be times when you’re concerned and you have to remind yourself of these promises God gave. It’s good for them to see you growing in your faith. It’s good to see that you have to keep turning to the Lord for help and encouragement. One more thing. Pray with your kids. Let them pray with you. They will learn a lot about praying by how you pray. So worship the Lord in your prayers, make heartfelt requests, and thank Him for what He has done.
Every moment matters. Timely words are needed, but our kids need to see how our faith impacts every part of our life. You have probably heard the statement, “Do as I say, not as I do.” That’s a bad statement. People learn by example and here in this text Moses tells the people to Talk while they sit, walk, lie down, and get up. That covers a lot of ground. Your faith is not segmented from the rest of your life. It is your life. It affects every part of what you do. It becomes the reason you make the choices you make, it’s your source of joy, peace, and happiness, and it’s the passion that pushes you along to love the Lord and others. Your kids need to see that.
So what should we be showing our kids in times like these? First, don’t panic. They can see panic and your panic causes them to panic. Stay calm, check your phone occasionally, not constantly, for updates on the situation and learn what to share and what not to. Second, check up on others to see how they’re doing. Let your kids see you doing this. Whether it’s family, neighbors, friends, or coworkers, let them see you caring for others. Offer to pray with and for others and then pray with your kids about the people you’re reaching out to. Third, stay connected to your church. This is a great opportunity to show our kids that church is more than a building and Sunday morning worship service. It’s people. We’re here for each other. We may not be meeting in large groups, but we’re still the body of Christ. We can still love each other and encourage growth in Christ.
So let me wrap this up. We have times to sit and talk about the Lord. It’s important we do that. Read scripture, pray, and share how you’re growing. Ask questions and make sure your kids know you’re interested in their walk with the Lord too. Then, live out your faith in every way. Show them what it means to trust the Lord in the good and bad times. Let them know that your faith in the Lord is the reason you have peace. Your greatest impact on the future generation starts in your home. And under the current conditions, you have more time at home.
Involved in Christ,