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Christian Living

Family

Mommy and the Joyful Three 06/12/17

Teaching Kids What It Means to Be a Christian

Praying family

Recent studies show that the number of Americans who claim to be Christian is down. There are probably many reasons for this decline. But, I have to wonder if it’s because we aren’t seeing or showing what being a true Christian really looks like.

We are raising our children in a tough world. It’s a world that in some circles saying you are a Christian elicits judgment. We’ve gotten a negative reputation. It’s easy to place blame on religion rather than examining the values it’s for and the immoralities it’s against.

Our children are the next generation of preachers, humanitarians, community leaders, teachers, bankers and entertainers. But, above all, they are God’s children.

We fear rejection. We’re overly concerned with the way we are viewed. If we stand for biblical values, we can be labeled as judgmental bigots. As a result, we sometimes react in a way that teaches our kids to shy away from their faith.

Where do we draw the line? How are we supposed to share God’s love? How, as parents, are we to protect our kids from these negative labels?

First and foremost, let’s remember we should not be teaching our children to judge anyone (Matthew 7:1). We are not here to hate, to speak ill of or to make others feel badly about who they are. “They will know we are Christians by our love” is one of the greatest rules to follow and it’s found in John 13:35. We need to teach our children to love God and love others.

To accept and love people is different than enabling. Enabling is to ignore or aid in their ways. Preach, but do not provoke. None of us likes being judged, but they probably would talk with you if they felt loved.

If you want your children to become strong believers, do not perpetuate the stereotype that Christians are angry, religious people. God’s salvation is always going to be a personal choice. We can’t force our kids to follow in our faith, but we can show them how wonderful it is to walk with Jesus.

Let your own faith be your family’s foundation. If your life is for God, then your children will see that devotion. Thank God in the good times and bad. Show your children that all honor should go to Jesus.

Lastly, talk with your children. When they have questions about Christianity, try to find the answers for them. Read the Bible with them. Get them involved in your local church. If someone says something hurtful to them about their beliefs, help them learn to love and forgive. We are all the hands and feet of Christ on this earth. Let’s live amongst our neighbors as He would.

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