94% of people choose to follow Jesus before they are 18 years old according to Barna Group. For some people, this incites fear and almost emergency-like responses in the way they communicate with young people and children today. It’s easy to believe the odds are against us when we see a statistic like that. However, we actually don’t have to trust in numbers, statistics, and odds because we serve a God that can flip any statistic on its back.
When it comes to raising children who will choose faith in Jesus for a lifetime, we want to have the long game in mind from the beginning. That’s why it’s essential to incite wonder in our little guys. Yes – we want to encourage questions and curiosity over recitation of facts. Because of the way a preschooler’s mind functions, he or she is naturally wondering about how this world works and it’s our job to nurture that.
This could feel uncomfortable or even counter-cultural to our experiences, but we want our kids to be amazed by how great God is and respond to His greatness. If we don’t allow the space for God to be great in each child’s heart, then we haven’t created the space for them to experience God in a powerful way. As we encourage kids to experience God, where they are at – in the wondering stage, we are helping nurture them into foundational experience and knowledge that ultimately sets them up for lifelong faith in Jesus.
How can you respond today?
- Don’t be afraid of questions you can’t answer.
- Dare to wonder aloud with your kiddos.
*ideas and concept borrowed from It’s Just a Phase Project at http://justaphase.com/