How To Use Everyday Moments To Talk About Jesus

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How To Use Everyday Moments To Talk About Jesus
By Alicia Bennett

 
In today’s fast-paced world, Christian parents often feel overwhelmed by the challenges of discipling their children. Many fear if they are doing “enough” to spiritually influence their children in today’s world.
 
Whether you are a parent of littles, overwhelmed with the daily tasks of diapers and dishes and need help to just begin to have spiritual conversations in your home, or you are a parent of teens, chauffeuring them around and trying to squeeze God’s Word into their school and relationship challenges, these tips are for you! Because the key to effective discipleship lies in using everyday moments in your family life—as well as using current, worldwide, and local events—to point the next generation to Christ.
 
Before parents can talk about God with their children, parents must know Him intimately and personally themselves, even if you are just starting to grow in your own faith. Parents cannot call their children to “follow Jesus” or “walk like Jesus” unless they are doing it in a way that children can mimic. And while there isn’t a formula for this, intentional discipleship that overflows from hearts being so in love with Christ is authentic discipleship that sticks and multiplies.
 
When parents abide in Christ and let his Word inform their hearts and thoughts, and let the Holy Spirit guide their actions, faith will more naturally overflow into their children, giving them a biblical model to mimic. Parents can only ask their children what Paul asked of the early believers: “imitate me, just as I imitate Christ” (1 Corinthians 11:1).
 
So how do parents use everyday moments and world events to talk to our kids about Jesus?
 

Embrace Everyday Moments

Everyday activities offer abundant opportunities for discipleship. Whether it’s during meals, car rides, or bedtime routines (see Deuteronomy 6:7-9), parents can use these moments to instill biblical values in their children. For example, while preparing dinner, parents can discuss the importance of gratitude and thank God for the food. During car rides, they can talk about God’s creation and the beauty of nature they see around them. When challenges arise from living life together, you can talk about how to have a godly response (and ask forgiveness for when you don’t!), giving practical, real-life examples as you live.
 
To make the most of everyday moments, consider these practical tips:
  • Model faith in daily life: Let your children see your faith in action. Pray openly, read the Bible together, and discuss how God is working in your own life.
  • Create a routine: Establish regular times for family devotions and prayer. Consistency helps children understand the importance of faith in daily life. A little bit goes a long way when they are young!
  • Incorporate faith into everyday language: Use playtime to teach biblical lessons. Bring Scripture into moments of conflict and discipline.
Events, both ordinary and extraordinary, can be powerful teaching tools. Use them to highlight God’s presence in all circumstances. For example, if your child experiences disappointment, discuss how to trust God and seek his comfort. At sporting events, talk about perseverance, dedication, and using our talents for God’s glory. When your children are in conflict with a sibling or a friend, discuss what Jesus would do. You can use birthdays and anniversaries as times to reflect on God’s blessings and faithfulness to you and your family.
 
Action Step: Create a list of daily activities where you can naturally incorporate faith-based conversations. Plan specific topics or questions to discuss during these times.
 

Leverage Current Events

World events, such as the war in the Ukraine, a tsunami in Japan, or even something like the Olympic Games, provide unique opportunities to teach children about different places and peoples, faiths and religions, and cultures and traditions. By giving them something to contrast what they know and see, you give them the opportunity to put their biblical worldview skills to practical use.
 
When you connect local and global events to Jesus and the gospel, you are informing their worldview. A worldview is the way that each and every one of us views the world, the lens through which we interpret life and things that happen to and around us. It is our job, as Christian parents, to give our children a biblical worldview, a biblical foundation on which they will live the rest of their lives. And when we choose to talk about world events through a biblical worldview, it will:
 
  • Inspire and feed their faith in God.
  • Create hearts of compassion and encourage them that their prayers matter.
  • Provide them with a tangible way to get involved with God.
  • Enlarge their worldview to trust God when they see how others go through trials.
You can use events like these to discuss biblical themes like perseverance, trust in God, and honoring God in our choices. The Olympics, for example, can be a great starting point for conversations about how athletes use their gifts and how we can use ours to glorify God.
 
Children are naturally curious and will have many questions about faith and the world around them. Encourage open dialogue, allowing them to express their thoughts and doubts. This fosters a deeper understanding and personal connection to their own faith, giving them a solid foundation as they grow up.
 
Action Step: Plan to watch events like the Summer 2024 Olympics with your children. Use them as springboards for discussions about biblical principles and how to live out their faith in daily life.
 

Address Difficult Events with Sensitivity

Parents get to help their children process difficult events every single day. When addressing challenging topics like natural disasters or local conflicts, it’s crucial to be honest yet sensitive to their age and emotional maturity.
 
Some strategies to consider:
 
Prepare emotionally: Ensure you’re emotionally ready to guide your children through these discussions. Process your feelings first so you can provide a calm and biblical perspective.
 
Use age-appropriate language: Simplify complex issues using terms your children understand. For younger children, describe conflicts in terms of “bad guys” and “good guys” without going into graphic details.
 
Be careful of your own prejudices: Make sure that you are filtering the issue through what the Bible says first, not what culture says or how you grew up. Always bring the Bible into the conversation.
 
Focus on prayer and compassion: Encourage your children to pray for those affected and to have compassionate hearts.
 
Explain how prayer can make a difference and show empathy. End in turning your hearts to God and His heart and ways.
 
Action Step: When a difficult event occurs, take time to pray and reflect on how to discuss it with your children. Use it as an opportunity to teach them about God’s love and care for all people.
 

Integrate Lessons from the Bible

Scripture should be the foundation of all discipleship efforts. Relate everyday experiences to biblical stories and principles. Don’t worry about knowing the “address” for each reference you make! In fact, make it a habit to look them up and then write them down and post commonly used Scripture up around your home, you and your kids will be learning the Bible together!
 
Action Step: Choose a few key Bible verses that align with the themes you want to discuss with your children. Post them up around your home and refer to them during relevant everyday moments.
 
Alicia has been teaching and writing about God’s heart for the nations and parenting with a biblical worldview since 2008.  She majored in East Asian studies in college where she also became a Christ-follower and after graduation went on to work with an international missions agency until she and her husband started a family. She enjoys reading, writing, and being outdoors with her husband and 4 boys. Today, she writes regularly on her blog atwww.MobilizerMom.com
 
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