Sunday, September 09, 2007

What are we feeding our children?

I recently spoke with an acquaintance of mine who was excited to tell me about an experience he had while visiting a church. He essentially coveyed how excited his child (grade-school age) was because they were challenged in the childrens sunday school class. His child was thrilled to get fed some meat (serious biblical and doctrinal teaching) rather than the watered-down children’s Bible stories or school-yard relationship tips that so many churches serve up every weekend.

Why do some churches feel the need to dumb-down the scriptures when teaching children? Or the other popular technique, making Sunday school a big party in an effort to keep them coming back for more games, movies, and loud music. There is nothing inherently wrong with games, movies (God honoring of course), and loud music. However, when they take center stage in lieu of solid biblical teaching and learning we have a problem.

I believe this is one of the things Jesus had in mind when he rebuked his disciples and told them to “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.” Let’s make sure we are not hindering our children by underestimating their ability to understand the kingdom of God. Let’s not be afraid to serve them up some substantive spiritual food rather than baby food or nutritionally-void snacks. I'm not saying it can't be fun. In fact, it should be. But, let’s stop simply entertaining and make sure that we are really teaching.

As a parent of four wonderful children this topic is near and dear to my heart. And, I feel (know) this responsibility of discipling them and feeding them spiritual meat is ultimately mine. Lord, empower me to raise my children in the fear and admonition of you. May I follow you in love and obedience because I know it is so important for me to be able to tell my kids to "imitate me". Lord, grant me your grace.

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