Ultimately, we all make our own choices. No matter what each of us is taught, we end up making our own decisions in life. That being said, as a parent and as a Christ follower, I know that I have a duty to lead my children to Christ. More than them finding happiness and following their hearts’s desire, my duty is to lead them into the arms of Jesus. To lead them into everlasting life. I believe that from an early age, they need to know that this world is temporary and that the Lord’s plan for their life is more important than what the world has to offer; Things that don’t last. The popular teaching is for parents to tell their kids they can be whatever they want, to follow their hearts and to be happy. I’m not against my kids being happy, but I believe that there’s a way to be happy without going against what the Lord wants for your life.
Growing up, all I learned was rules. Things you’re not allowed to do, and what God doesn’t like. I didn’t learn the love of God. I didn’t learn God’s plan for my life. I didn’t learn the grace of God. I used to wish I had learned the Lord earlier, and yeah it would’ve saved me a lot of heart ache and problems but I think I gave my life to the Lord at just the right time. I was pregnant with my first child. First of all, I don’t believe you can really teach someone the Gospel of Jesus Christ and expect them to listen without showing them by example. So I intend to keep growing and maturing in Christ to show my kids what a life of Holiness looks like and that living for God is the best way.
Secondly: Yes the Bible teaches that God has standards of holiness. But these shouldn’t be taught without grace and love. You can’t uphold the whole law of God. And why would you want to without knowing Him and how much He loves you? Before Jesus came on the scene to bring the Kingdom of God to earth and fulfill the law with His love, people were trying to uphold 613 laws and always failed. Because they didn’t have the Holy Spirit and most of all, they didn’t have Jesus’ sacrifice to cover them and make them righteous. The greatest revelations I ever had were that Jesus loves me, that there’s nothing I can do to earn that love, that He has a plan for my life and that He paid the price that I don’t have to pay for sins that I committed so that I don’t have to go to hell. If they can just grasp THAT. The power of the cross and what it means! But it needs to be taught from young. In ways they understand.
Keeping an open line of communication between you and your kids is so important. For many reasons, but teaching them the Gospel is one of them. They need to be able to ask questions. And as a parent, I need to be able to know how to answer these questions. As adults, we don’t know everything. And we are always learning. Kids need to know that! That mommy and daddy don’t know everything, but that when we read our Bibles, pray and seek God, we learn. Have Bible study time with them. Let them hear you pray to the Father. Your raw, open heart prayers. I believe that will show them what it’s like to have a relationship with our creator. Let them know that everything we have comes from Him.
More on prayer: From early on, prayer needs to be a regular, normal part of a child’s life. Praying with them, praying over them. With my son who is six, I have started to just listen to him pray to see how he prays. Then later, I’ll give him examples of things to pray for. I notice that he always gives thanks to the Lord for the people in his life. So I’ve started to tell him that he can pray for the people in his life by asking God to protect them and give them what they need. His prayers are from the heart, but he needs to be led into how to pray for others as well.
I don’t know if there is a perfect way to lead your kids to Christ. It needs to be tailored to your family situation, your kids’ individual needs and such. But there is a way that is right. The foundation is Jesus. He is the way. Every family is different. But God is the same no matter where you go. The Bible, how to live to get to heaven and Jesus’ love don’t change.
The Bible says, ”