Introducing Kids To God, How Early Is Early?
Someone used the above picture as her DP on BB and I just had to 'borrow' it for the purpose of this post.
Years back, even before meeting darling hubby, I made up my mind to do everything humanly possible to raise godly kid(s) who would be (wo)men after His heart if He chooses to bless me with any.
And now, the journey has begun.
Even though experts claim foetuses could hear from the womb I wonder just how much they could hear or comprehend while still enscounced there. Just in case they could really hear, I began the 'introduction' when they were still in the uterus, speaking to them and praying for them.
And now as they grow, we try to point them in the right direction, teaching them how to pray, though I still doubt they understand much of what they hear. But I believe with time, it would sink in gradually, eventually helping them in their lives' journey.
One of the strategies we have adopted in achieving this is making sure we pray before every meal and also before going to bed or rather when we are in bed.
D1 is always a sight to behold when he starts at mealtimes, standing stiff with his eyes closed and hands clasped, singing "some have food but cannot eat, some can eat but have no food..." after which would come the ''bless this food o Lord for Christ sake"
(some songs just qualify for the super-evergreen award) At bedtime, each person gets to say his own prayer, including 27month old D2 in his barely coherent manner. (sure God understands all)
Sometimes I get so tired that all I could think of is just to tuck them in, hit the bed myself and dive straight into dream land but they would have none of that, lailai. And I sure am always glad to let them have their way when it comes to that.
''Mummy, its your turn to pray''
(Most times, they are in bed before daddy''s arrival from work as the official bedtime is 8pm)
If I do not respond within seconds, D2's whining would gradually turn to crying and graduate into wailing! No be small thing o.
Easiest and most rewarding way out is to succumb. And my reward? A kiss each from them followed by ''I Love You''. (This in itself is enough incentive for me)
I really am grateful for this, its like a check and a reminder for me of my duties to these wonderful wards entrusted into my care.
Another strategy I just adopted is to teach and memorise a bible verse per quater which we all recite individually and jointly after saying our prayers in bed.
Throughout last year, D1 only got to memorise one memory verse from sunday school: Phil 4:4 (rejoice in the Lord always, again I say, rejoice) but we are making it one bible verse per quater this year. And so far both of them could recite Psalm 23:1 and we are working on Prov 23:25a. (Let your father and your mother be glad)
I love how the new verse is leading into other lessons for them. For instance, D1 now knows one of the synonyms for 'glad' is 'happy'.
He also knows what to do to make his ''father and mother'' happy. Last night, he was reeling off the ''howtos'' for me at bedtime...being a good boy, turning off the TV when mummy or daddy says so, not whinning when its bedtime, cleaning his table after meals, etc.
As for D2, he just copies almost everything D1 says or does but I believe with time, he would really get to understand the basics.
We also sing together, kids love that a lot.
We read bible stories together and ''gist'' generally about God, Jesus and love.
Just the other day we were having our ''gisting'' time in bed, looking at pictures and reading from D1's little bible. We saw this picture depicting God and D1 was quick to point out to me, ''mummy, that is God''. I was like, oh really? I asked him whether he had seen or visited God and he answered no but that he knows God lives in the sun. Lol. (He picked that up from a friend)
More importantly, I believe ''walking the talk'' or ''modelling'' is one of the best strategies parents could also adopt in raising balanced kids. (A topic for another day)
It's a journey and we keep learning each day but do remember if we don't tell them about God early, someone else will tell them everything He's not.
Share your thoughts and tips on this topic, please.