I did not grow up going to church with my family. When we lived in Corvallis, Oregon during my first through third grade years, I had two best friends: Jeanie and Julie. Jeanie went to church with her family while Julie and I did not. So on Sunday mornings, I got together with Julie only as we knew that Jeanie would be in church.
After my family moved to Portland when I was in fourth grade and when I was in fifth grade, my neighbor Vicky invited me to attend St. David’s Episcopal Church where her dad was the pastor. It was across the street from me. I sang in the choir and got to wear this really cool purple and blue choir robe.
In seventh grade I attended the Nazarene church in downtown Portland with my friend Jennifer and in ninth grade I was involved with Fellowship of Christian Athletes; in 10thgrade I was connected with Young Life and in the summer after my sophomore year, I attended Jesus Northwest with my friend Jeanie’s Young Life group; my life was changed forever as I committed my life to Christ during that summer
I began attending Lincoln Street Baptist Church in my neighborhood during my junior year and was baptized my senior year of high school. My parents separately started going to the Catholic Church and my sister, away at college, came to faith in Christ via Campus Crusade for Christ.
As adults, my siblings and I make church a part of our respective families’ lives, and my dad still regularly attends his neighborhood Catholic Church.
I am thankful that my husband and I share the same value of wanting to raise our children in the church. It is huge for us both. He like myself came to personal faith when he was in his later teens. And, to clarify, when I say, “Raise our children in the church,” I am of course not just talking about attending church, but about living a life of faith all around. It begins with a personal relationship with Christ and it extends into our daily lives and habits – reading the Bible, praying, extending mercy and grace, serving, helping others and yes, attending church.
I believe it is important to talk about God and church and prayer and with our children in our homes. It is one of the most important practices of How I Mom. It is vital for our children to see us living out our faith. Our kids are watching us all the time, especially when we think they are not watching. They observe, they soak in, they feel what we are doing and how we are living and treating others.
I remember a friend of mine telling me about her neighbor who used to drop off her kids at Sunday School and then go out to breakfast instead of attending church herself. Kids will see right through that. They need to see that church is important to us as parents, and that it is not only something you want them to follow.
I think of one of my favorite passages in Scripture found in Deuteronomy 6, verses 4 through 9:
Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.”
God makes following Him pretty simple, if we stop and think about it: “Love the Lord your God with all of your heart and soul and strength “
And, then, talk about it with our children — when we are home and on the road and when we lie down and when we get up.
That’s about all the time. Talk about God.
Think about our conversations with our children. We talk about what is important to us. When we make reading God’s word, memorizing Scripture, praying, serving others, reaching out, and attending church an important part of our lives, it will affect what we speak about to our kids and others in our lives It will flow out as an abundance. It will be like an overflow in our lives.
Our kids are watching. And listening. Talk about God.
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How do you Mom when it comes to teaching your kids your faith? I’d love to hear in the comments section or on any of my social media posts!
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This is the fourth post in a 30 day series called “How I Mom” – I am using
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