Over the course of the past month or so we’ve been talking with the 1st through 5th graders in Kid’s Church on Sunday mornings about how God gives us hope – hope through Jesus, hope in heaven, hope in the resurrection… knowing the hope we have in God. In the New Testament, the Apostle Peter encourages us to know why we have hope, and to be prepared to share that reason with others:
“15 But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect,” (1 Peter 3:15, NIV)
Younger kids are quick to accept what we tell them as truth, and to blindly believe and put their faith in what we tell them – often times enthusiastically – especially what we share about God! But what substance is there to that belief? Does that belief yield much more for them than the kind of wishful thinking they may have in creating a Christmas wish-list for Santa Claus? Or in the wishes they make as they blow out the candles on their birthday cake? Does their “faith” result in hope?
As kids get older they begin looking for proof about what others proclaim to be true – even their parents! And as they progress through adolescence, the idea of truth becomes a very relative term for them. What can we offer them about trusting God, about having faith in Christ? How do they find any meaningful hope as they look for physical evidence of God and the truths we try to impart… or explore what to them may be a very gray area of faith…?
We want our kids to experience a sense of hope that comes from having faith in a living God… one that is filled with expectancy –a hope with substance! Because only a hope with substance will sustain them during difficult times, motivate them to action and create within them a desire to draw ever closer to God.
So, this week, ask your children what difference their faith has made in their lives? And challenge them to offer a specific example. Encourage them to see how their faiths produce hope, and to identify what the reason for that hope is! And in the process, share with them one example from your own life of how your relationship with God has made a difference for you. Offer to them a reason for the hope that you have been given through your relationship with Jesus.
Celebrate with each other the hope you find in the risen Christ, in your heavenly Father, and in the promises of His word as you continue to build a heritage of faith for your family!
Oh, and take a minute today to register for our next Family Legacy Workshop coming up May 21st!
Blessings to you and your family this week!