How Do I Disciple My Kids?
Just the other day, someone asked our family, “How do I disciple my kids?” What a great question! As we have written about before, our church is blessed to have a fantastic children’s ministry, with our staff and volunteers leading the kids in worship every Sunday with a mix of stories, songs and activities that teach the bible from Genesis to Revelation.
But, just as our spiritual lives consist of more than just Sunday morning, it is our privilege and responsibility to disciple our kids throughout the week. While that may seem overwhelming (rightly so), we are fortunate to live in a day where an abundance of resources are available to us for free or for a very low cost.
Here are a few of them that our family uses, usually around the dinner table or in the car or really anytime the kids are gathered together with us.
The Gospel Project for Kids App
Did you know that the curriculum we use on Sunday is available on your phone? You have to pay $1 to get full access to each unit, but when you do, you are able to listen to the songs the kids sing and other resources to help reinforce what the kids learn on Sunday.
New City Catechism
If you’re unfamiliar with a catechism, it is a series of questions and answers about God - a method of teaching in the church that has been used for centuries. We recently downloaded the New City Catechism App - which is completely free - and it has been incredible! There are 52 questions, one for each week, and every single one has a song that goes with it. We’ve been at it for a few weeks and both of our kids now have the first few questions down!
These may not be free, Story Bibles are a great investment for your kids. We read one Bible story to our kids most nights before bedtime, and the kids love reading them by themselves too. There are several good ones out there, but some are better than others. Each of the following is faithful to the scriptures and attempt to teach the whole bible as a big story.
Big Picture Storybook Bible*
This one is great for babies up until about age 4 or 5. The stories are short and there are lots of pictures to hold their attention.
Jesus Storybook Bible*
This one is better for older kids because the stories are longer. We give one of these out to any family that wants one - so if you would like a copy, just ask on Sunday!
The Gospel Project Big Picture Interactive Bible Storybook
This is the story Bible that goes along with our Sunday morning curriculum. There is only one image per story, and the text is basically just a condensed version the Bible text. It would make a great stepping stone to prepare older children to read a “real” Bible.
*You may also want to check out audio versions of these as well. They are great for car rides and keep the kids' attention.
There are numerous other resources out there, but here are a few more to end on.
My ABC Bible Verses by Susan Hunt - We have loved using this book to teach our kids to memorize scripture. The lessons learned from scripture have also begun to affect our kids' hearts (particularly the verse about being a peacemaker!)
The Ology - This book is a really cool way to teach systematic theology for kids.
So hopefully these resources are helpful, but it is important to remember that at the end of the day, only the Holy Spirit can guide us, and we need to be sure to walk with God if we want to effectively disciple our children.