In all my time as a Children’s Pastor, one of the most asked questions I heard from parents was, “How do I teach my child to study the Bible?” As I continued to receive this question, I began to realize it was being asked so often because many of the adults themselves did not know how to study. This ignited in me a passion to equip people with the materials needed to study God’s Word. I am a firm believer that discipleship takes place at home. Church is an important piece of the puzzle, but it is simply that: a piece. One of many pieces. Most of these puzzle pieces come from times spent at home, in the car, hanging out with family, and experiencing life together.
As kids navigate life’s issues, they watch as the adults in their lives navigate similar situations. They follow the behaviors, reactions, and processes we display. The best way to disciple our kids is to live out the life we want them to have with the Lord. If we want them to pray more, we must let them hear us pray regularly. If we want them to read the Bible more, we must let them see us reading it often. If we want our children to choose Scripture over social media, we must lead by example.
It has been said that what one generation does in moderation the next will do in excess. If that is the case, and I want my kids to read their Bibles, pray, and worship in excess, then they must see me do that, at the very least, in moderation. So my advice to someone wanting to better disciple their kids? Just start. Open your Bible, pray, and worship, but not just in a personal quiet time they never see. Live out your life openly, in front of your family. Let them be part of the process. I do agree, private quiet time with the Lord is important, however, some of my favorite quiet times have included those moments when my daughter curls up in my lap and reads along with me. The walk of faith we get to experience is a joy, and I can’t think of anything better, or more important, to share with our children. Let them see you make it a priority you enjoy, and watch it become a priority they enjoy.