I DO NOT DO CONFIRMATION, PAT.
Give them a Christian foundation to fall back on.
By Megan Bailey
As Christian parents, we want our children to build a deep, strong and close relationship with God. We want them to feel the love and blessing from God we do every day and understand that our heart can only be complete when God fills it. We have such a deep desire for our children to follow in our religious footsteps. How do we nurture that journey?
These steps are easy ways to begin bringing Christ into your child’s life consistently. With a little effort each day, you can help your child build a religious foundation that will last their lifetime. No matter what they go through in life, they will have Christ to fall back on because you chose to instill faith in them at a young age.
Here are some ways to help your child build a relationship with Christ.
Teach Children How to Pray
A very important step in helping your child build a relationship with Christ is by teaching them how to pray. Your child needs to learn of avenues to communicate with God. This can be done through private prayer before bed or public prayer during church. Pray before every meal or before school. Develop daily rhythms of prayer at a time you consistently can stick to. Teach them that prayers are simple conversations with the Lord that can be written or made up on the spot. The more often we speak to God the more natural it becomes.
Though your child might not always like getting up early on Sunday mornings, involvement in church is a must. Weather they regularly go to Sunday School, attend youth group events or bible study programs, your child will begin to learn about the Bible’s principals. Children can’t begin to see how God fits into their lives until they start learning about Him. By going to church, they will start to learn basic stories from the Bible and why they are important. You can take this a step further by discussing what your children learned each week at church at home. Let them ask questions and get curious about the stories in the Bible. These activities are also a great way for them to start making Christian friends that have similar values.
Baptism and Confirmation
Depending on your denomination, baptism and confirmation are great ways to get your child started in the church. Baptism is a great first step on the journey to spiritual growth. Weather you do it while your child is very young, or later in their life, it can be discussed with them why it’s important and special. Going through some type of confirmation later in their teens will help solidify their dedication to Christ. Providing them with the appropriate mentor is a great option in moving the forward.
Talk About God Regularly
When you only go to church on Sundays, it can seem like God is distant every other day of the week. It’s important to somehow bring your faith into the home daily, so that your child has a consistent reminder that Christ is there for them. Involve your child in worshipping God with you through prayer, Bible study, or simply discussing Him each day. Bring God up in dinner conversation by asking your child how God blessed them that day. Doing so will help them see God in their lives, and aid in development of a deeper relationship with Him.
Demonstrate Godly Characteristics
You have probably quickly noticed that your child picks up on every little thing that you do. Children notice when a parent is being hypocritical, unethical, immoral or even lazy in their approach to God. Children will not feel a desire to grow their own faith if they believe you aren’t taking it seriously either. On the flipside, they are more likely to value the faith if you are regularly seen reading the Bible, praying, and upholding God’s standards. Your actions will speak volumes here, and it’s probably the most important aspect in helping your child build a relationship with Christ.
As parents, we want the best for our kids and want to instill Godly values, morals and characteristics in them. These easy steps will help to nurture your child’s relationship with God, and give them a solid Christian base to fall back on. Be open about your faith and share it with your child regularly.Megan Bailey is the Social Media Specialist and Content Producer for Beliefnet. She attended James Madison University where she received a degree in psychology.