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.
It is easy to look around and find things in this world to fear. Some are valid, others are outrageous. However, the enemy can use these fears to invade our mind and overtake our perspective. It is easy for him to fill our mind with seemingly realistic scenarios that flood our hearts and minds with anxiety. It is not as easy for us to fight these fears. We must be intentional about taking every thought into captivity and choosing to think on things that are right, true, pure and praiseworthy. We must analyze every thought, every concern, every fear and compare them to the truths found in God’s Word. Truth: God is love. Truth: God will never leave us. Truth: God is for us. Truth: God is Jehovah Jireh, our provider. Truth: We can trust God.
Ultimately, we find a repeated truth, in fact, a repeated command in Scripture: do not fear. This phrase is repeated in many instances, to multiple people. Each time, we find the assurance that God and His presence is greater than anything we might fear. In the instance of Isaiah 41:10, God is reminding his people, the Israelites, that He is with them. His presence changes everything. They did not need to fear because He was with them. They did not need to be discouraged because He was the One providing their strength and victory.
This is true for any of us, His children, today. The same God who created the universe, the One who controls all things; He is with you. He is your God. He is your strength. He is your source of help. He is the One who holds you up. It is God who provides and protects. Trust in Him. Will you say, as David did in Psalms 56:3, “When I am afraid, I will put my trust in you.”?
What is your go-to truth verse whenever you are battling fear?
There are several apps available for mapping out To Do lists. However, I personally find the following method to be much simpler and more efficient for me.
“I am forever grateful that in continually changing times, we serve an unchanging God…When everything else is different, this is the same: We can still trust Him.”