Just about every church would agree that children should be taught about God.
But is that enough?
For many years, churches have been trying to improve the quality of Sunday school and other programs for children. In an effort to make Christian education more enjoyable and to keep kids coming back, talented people have continually created better curriculum and implemented more effective teaching methodologies.
And we commend these efforts! There is much that children need to know about God and about his Bible. And we want to use the best teaching methods possible to accomplish this.
But at KidZ at Heart, we believe that adults may have been teaching young people about God for too long. Maybe it’s time for us to connect children with God!
What’s the difference?
In his book It’s Your Call, Gary Barkalow describes it this way: “Understanding the components of a good marriage does not make one. Understanding the principles of money management does not keep you out of debt. Understanding the techniques of a good golf swing does not get you closer to the green. Understanding the practices of healthy living does not keep you healthy” (p. 26).
Throughout Scripture, whenever the Bible talks about “knowing” something, it is experiential. It’s not just head knowledge; it’s a practical, applied, life-changing way of knowing.
For us, as a married couple of over 36 years, to only know about each other would be very sad. Our love rests in being connected with one another.
It should be the same today when we talk about a child knowing God. It should be a life-changing, connected sort of knowledge!
Whether leading a workshop at a huge convention in the United States or sharing an informal training with village leaders in East Africa, KidZ at Heart trainers help adults meet with God personally as they learn spiritual practices that open space for God to work in their lives. Then we teach them how to effectively share these practices with children. And we encourage the adults to trust that God and his children can – and will – meet with each other.
When trained and trusted, children can sit silently for several minutes and listen for the still, small voice of God. And they hear him! When taught to examine their days, children quickly learn to see how God is working in their midst. And they start expecting him to do so! And when given permission, kids pray in ways that reveal faith far beyond their parents and teachers. And they see answered prayer!
The God who has searched each of us and knows us completely (Ps 39) desires for all of us, including young children, to search him and know him in the same way!
As we continue to lose 40% of children from the church and another 40% of our teens, at KidZ at Heart we believe it is time to connect young people with God personally. Our best techniques and products may lose the next generation. But God will never lose his children!
Want to explore how you can connect children with God in your church and home? KidZ at Heart offers a variety of workshops and conferences across the country focusing on equipping people to reach and teach kids for Christ within their own culture. These events are practical, fun, engaging, and just what you need for your ministry. Browse topics, and register for an event near you!