I think all of us can admit that there are times the Bible feels a little overwhelming and hard to understand. I mean, why was God so seemingly harsh in Old Testament times? And, who in the world could follow all of the laws and edicts given to the Israelites in the early books of the Bible?
The fear of discussions like these can make us hesitant to teach our children about God’s Word. But, Scripture tells us that we are to do exactly that: Deuteronomy 6:6-9 says, “And you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I am giving you today. Repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.”
So, how do we overcome the fear of sharing the Bible with our kids? How do we turn opportunities to teach into a time of joy for everyone? Consider these five ideas to help you get excited about “Bible time” with your kids.
1. Teach the Bible as one overarching story of God’s love for us, not as a bunch of separate books that were thrown together. From creation to the Garden of Eden; to the flood; to Christ’s birth, death, resurrection and second coming, the Bible tells us in no uncertain terms that God will go to any lengths to remind us that we have been loved from the beginning of time and will continue to be loved forever. This truth changes my perspective on sharing God’s Word with my kids and grandkids. I get excited when I am able to tell them that God has been showing His love to us since before time began. How wonderful for them to absorb this truth at a young age!
2. Find a translation that is easy for kids to read and understand. Some versions are hard for a child to grasp. Others are easier. You know your child’s level of comprehension, so look for a translation that will meet them where they are. Personally, I love the New Living Translation. It’s written with the everyday person in mind, making it easy for all ages to read and comprehend.
3. Encourage your kids to act out Bible stories. Use dress-up clothes and other props from around the house to make the stories of the Bible come to life. As your little ones act out the stories, they engage more fully with the lessons being taught.
4. Create songs to accompany what you are learning, or find kids’ Christian music online that recreates the events of God’s Word. Music helps us better remember what we have learned, and it is just plain fun!
5. Make collages or art projects based on favorite Bible stories. Read a story together and then let your kids loose with crayons, paints, scissors, paper, and whatever else you are comfortable with their using. Let them create their own interpretation of the Bible story on paper, and invite them to retell the story as they explain their creation to you.
Use the ideas above or think up some of your own to make “Bible time” a joy for your children. The benefits will be long lasting and life changing for your whole family!
Linda Howard is Associate Publisher for Kids and Youth products at Tyndale House Publishers. She has been with Tyndale since 2007.
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