It is easy to think that talking to your kids about their faith is a daunting task. And while I’ll admit the topic is critical, the conversations aren’t as intimidating as we make them out to be. The most important component of talking to your kids about salvation is actually starting the conversation.
Start when they are little. Toddlers’ and preschoolers’ brains are developing at a rapid pace and they are soaking in every piece of information they come across. When you begin talking about simple yet profound things when they are small, it builds a foundation of faith for years to come.
Things like, thanking God for creating the trees at the park that provide shade, praising God for the gift of creating pets to love and care for, and explaining how God designed you to be just the right parent for your child. In Grace K!DS, it is our goal for our preschoolers, as they develop in their faith, to grasp the concept that God made them, He loves them and Jesus wants to be their friend forever.
If you begin having these conversations at home, while they are young, your child will learn that you are a safe place to bring their questions and even doubts to as they grow in their faith. Continuing the conversation as they grow can prevent the awkward or uncomfortable feelings that may arise as you have critical conversations with your preteen and teenagers about their faith!
So, what are some important things to consider as our kids begin to ask critical questions and we approach the topic of salvation? I’m so glad you asked!
Focus on Relationship! It is vital that in our efforts to disciple our kids we keep in mind the primary goal is for their relationship with Jesus to be front and center. While it is important that they learn all the bible stories and how to love and be kind to others, the information does not equal redemption.
Our main priority should be centered around helping our kids develop a friendship with God. This is the foundation of salvation. Friendships are developed through time and attention. Help your child prioritize spending time learning about who God is and giving attention to prayer, worship, and His word.
Something else to consider is that your kids are watching your every move! If you are trying to lead them to a friendship with our creator, but you aren’t modeling a friendship yourself, you won’t get far! The best way to lead your kids into a loving relationship with Jesus is to have one yourself.
Be transparent with your kids about your imperfections and need for forgiveness. Freely talk about Jesus in your family and how He is leading you personally. Let them see you reading His word and take time to pray with and for your kids, outside of meal and bedtime. These things will help instill an understanding of what knowing Jesus and living your life for Him looks like.
Kids are concrete thinkers, so simple words and terms are best. Try to avoid symbolic analogies that may add confusion or cause distraction. For example, rather than using the phrase “accept Jesus into your heart,” say things like, “invite Jesus to be the King or Boss of your life,” “accept God’s free gift of grace and forgiveness and live a life that honors Him.”
Here are important scriptures to talk through when leading your child through a salvation conversation:
God made me: Psalm 100:3, 139:13-14, Ephesians 2:10 (Genesis 1:1-25 creation story)
I am His and He loves me: 1 John 3:1, Ephesians 3:18-20
I need to be rescued: Romans 3:23, 6:23, 10:9, Ephesians 2:8-9, 1 John 1:9
Only Jesus can rescue: John 14:16, John 3:16, Romans 5:8
Following Jesus: Ephesians 5:1, 1 John 4:19, 5:20,
Questions to ask your child to learn more about where they are on their faith journey:
What are some of your favorite things that God created?
If you could ask God any question, what would you ask Him?
What do you know about Jesus?
Have you read anything in the bible that means a lot to you right now?
What is your favorite story in the bible and why is it your favorite?
Can you tell me about your friendship with God?
What do you think is the most important thing you have learned about God?
When you think about Jesus giving His life so that you can be rescued, how does that make you feel?
What do you think sin is? Do you do that? How do you think God feels about sin?
Why is it important to tell God and someone else about your sin?
Do you know what the bible says the consequence of our sin is?
Who paid for those consequences that we should have?
Do you believe that Jesus died on the cross to pay for the consequences of your sin?
Have you thought about or made a decision to follow Jesus and invite Him to rescue you from sin?
As your child grows in their knowledge and love for Jesus, hopefully, the conversations will deepen. We all know kids ask a million questions and talking about faith is no different. Don’t be afraid of their questions. You won’t always know the answer, and that’s actually a good thing. This allows you to model turning to God’s word for answers and is even more effective when you do it together!
Looking for a community or someone to grab coffee with who is in a similar life season? We’d love to connect with you and get to know you better! Below you will find a few people that can’t wait to meet you, shoot us an email so we can make a plan!
Tyler OJ Campus
Teresa Ator: firstname.lastname@example.org
Bethanie Tayler: email@example.com
Tyler UB Campus
Max Heller: firstname.lastname@example.org
Molly Pontius: email@example.com
Debra Kirby: firstname.lastname@example.org