The euphoria of TGIF is gone! It’s Sunday afternoon and some of us are already back from church while some are driving to relatives/ friends’ houses to say hello. This is a good way to unwind because weekends are really loaded these days that we only manage to get a few things off our to-do list while we carry the remaining forward into the next weekend. Nevertheless, it is important we pay quality attention to the few things we intend doing and give them our best shots.
Now, let’s be sincere, how many of us asked our children what they learnt in church today? If you asked, good job. If you didn’t, you must engage your kids in this regard. Our approach to the spiritual training of our children should be deliberate and intentional as our approach to their school education. We must put as much or more energy into our children’s spiritual development just as their physical and intellectual development. Many people are complaining about false doctrines in churches, but what are you doing about it? Don’t just talk about it, read the scriptures and impart on your children. If you can’t teach your children, at least follow up on what they have learnt at Sunday school.
Christians are called to make disciples and as Christian parents, it is our responsibility to make disciples of our children first. Parents should understand that children’s ministry is not a baby sitting centre for kids where parents are expected to leave their children in order to have quiet service at the adult’s church. Some parents just drop their kids off without caring about what their children are being taught or what they have learnt, this is such a waste of precious time. Think about this, what is the essence of you wanting to learn and grow in faith while you neglect the spiritual growth of your children? Children that are well grounded spiritually are often times well rounded socially because the bible is full of invaluable stories we can use to teach children about kindness, compassion, greed, lying, humility, etc.
Just like schools are now partnering with parents in teaching children, parents should partner with churches in helping children develop spiritually too. Show interest and discuss more with your children on your way back home the lessons learnt at church. Children will benefit more when parents discuss informally some bible lessons with them. Use age appropriate expressions and don’t sound to too preachy. We need to get really creative in order to make spiritual truths more memorable and interesting to our children.
A Sunday school teacher told me once that she gives one Euro each to children that are swift to read mentioned scriptural passages in her class. She deliberately does this to help them memorize the books of the bible and the reward system is working for her class immensely.
Many churches need to reconsider the importance of strong ministry to children. Train teachers, just like good schools invest in getting good teachers and training them regularly. I know teaching is sometimes voluntary, but it won’t cost the church too much to invest a little in the teachers so children can get the best. Most importantly, what are you willing to do to ensure your child knows Jesus and have a relationship with him?