Some Things the Bible Says Our Kids Need to Know
If you feel overwhelmed at principles in the Bible that we should be teaching our kids, and don’t know where to start, or feel like it’s someone else’s job who is more spiritual, you’re in the right place.
It’s our job as parents to teach these to our kids – not teachers, the pastor, or Sunday School teachers, helpful as they may be.
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Here are a few places to start:
Teach Them About God and How To Love God.
Hear, O Israel! The Lord is our God, the Lord is one!
You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.
These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart.
You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up.
You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead.
You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.Deuteronomy 6:4-9
It’s not clear if the “these words” just mean the verses before it, or the bulk of the rest of Deuteronomy. The rest of Deuteronomy is rich with principles (including the 10 commandments) that our children should know, also.
When we drive to school, I usually pray out loud with them on the way. I often start off with thanksgiving, or praise and adoration, and sometimes confession, before making requests.
I do this to model for the kids how to pray and how to love on the Lord.
Sometimes I ask them to say our prayer, and I love hearing them love on the Lord, also.
Feel like you don’t know how to love God enough to teach your kids how?
All of us have feeble, limited love.
Good news: God IS love (1 John 4:8).
He gives us His love so we can give it out and give it back to Him! Love is an action verb, not a feeling, although God did equip us with feelings.
Ask God to help you to love Him, and to teach your kids to, also.
Observe Your Child’s Strengths and Help/Guide Him
Train up a child in the way he should go (according to his way),
Even when he is old he will not depart from it.Proverbs 22:6
The Hebrew word for “way he should go” is translated, his way, or his pathway. For English understanding, “should go” was added in.
Can you see the slight difference when you add those words, “should go”? Many people think, “I’ve raised him in church. Why has he turned from God?”
They feel like they’ve failed as a parent because of this verse.
But when you read it “according to his way” and realize that God made EACH of us with a unique, special plan in mind, and parents are supposed to help figure that out and guide our children, it makes so much more sense.
Want to get the exact concordance I use to look up original Hebrew and Greek? Click the image below.
God made each of us unique and for a special purpose. There’s NO ONE ELSE who can fulfill that exact purpose.
Train him up the way God intended for him to go. NOT the way we think he should go.
What a wonderful God.
To make each of us unique?
To know He made you for a special purpose?
With your gifts and talents and the people whose lives you touch, you have a special job that only you can do?
Friend, this truth should make you feel incredibly special.
I hope your heart swells with love for God at this thought.
We need to get this word out.
Our society’s increasing suicide rate,
The feelings of helplessness, aloneness, overwhelm.
The knowledge that God planned and thought deeply about you.
He gave you a unique set of talents, gifts, abilities, personality, and people you are in contact with.
If more people knew that God created them to fulfill their OWN SPECIAL and SPECIFIC-TO-THEM plan, and would seek God’s face about what He created them to do (and NOT do) – I believe it would decrease the above alarming and sad events.
It would DEFINITELY shift people’s focus.
In our family, both Prince Charming and I watch and listen to see what jazzes our kids, and what they’re naturally good at.
We then encourage them to pursue it.
If they try something and don’t like it, we don’t force that activity, though it may be one of our favorite things.
Be a keen observer of your kids.
When PC Jr was maybe 2 or 3 years old, I observed him successfully open something that may have given some adults trouble. He saw me struggling, leveraged something against the opening, and was able to help me open it.
The Teen would not (even to this day) have thought of that.
Each person has their strengths and ways of thinking or figuring out things.
When we observe them, even as little ones, we can help guide them towards areas of strength and help them figure out what they were meant to do.
Share this with other parents, too – to observe what their children’s strengths and interests are, rather than trying to mold them into something (square peg in a round hole -esque).
So many parents out there want their kids to be (insert high-paying career or prestigious activity here) to follow in their own footsteps.
Or they say, “like father, like son” and “chip off the old block”.
That just sets people up for depression and confusion later on.
Then the kids – now adults – try to block out and stuff down possible career interests in order to please their parents.
We even did this with The Teen, sort of.
He had an opportunity to get into a prestigious school. A few friends went there and some were also applying and interviewing.
He got accepted.
We parents were thrilled. The Teen? Not so much.
Because of the prestige of the school, and his friends would be there, we made him go.
Maybe to feed our own ego?
(“Of COURSE my brilliant son goes to that school. He’s brilliant! Where else would he go?”)
It was SO not a good fit for him.
His friends? Somehow he only had one class with one, and the other one blew him off. The third one decided not to attend that school after all.
The school had HOURS and HOURS of homework each night. Parents were complaining and asking how much homework other schools with honors and AP classes had, to compare, wondering if they should switch their child out.
All this trauma to our kids for our own ego boost.
It wasn’t fair to him.
It was not what God made him for.
We and other parents with similar stories are doing their kids a disservice to try to make them like themselves, or to try to live out their own dreams vicariously through their kids.
When parents feel like a failure because their own parents didn’t encourage them in THEIR pathway that God intended, and they now feel unfulfilled and think they have a second chance through their kids, this is not what God intended when He gave us kids.
If you find yourself doing this?
Go work on your own second career. The one that should have been your first career, but you didn’t know you were supposed to do what you felt a pull towards.
Seek God always before charging ahead, my friend.
Don’t make the mistake we did – thinking an acceptance into the school meant it was God’s will.
Always be in prayer and listen for guidance.
Women Should Work Out
Oh, you didn’t know that was in the Bible?
She girds herself with strength
And makes her arms strong.Proverbs 31:17
There it is, friend. Proverbs 31 woman (who has a whole bunch more she shouts out about, by the way), apparently does planks, pushups, curls, and dips?Save 75% on select workout pants with promo code 75VCCUSB on Amazon.com
Speaking of her, that’s a whole chapter to focus on ourselves and teach our daughters. The first of which should be – do NOT get overwhelmed and feel inadequate next to this example of a woman!
As long as we’re seeking God’s face and growing in Him, HE provides the growth (it’s inevitable) and He decides the pace.
Did you notice ~
Weeds pop up out of nowhere and grow strong and fast, while the regular plants seem to grow slower.
Some trees you plant grow quickly, while others do not.
GOD is the One who decides our timetable. He decides how fast we grow.
Our job is to listen, obey, and stay close to Him.
How will we know we’ve grown?
Here’s been my experience, and I encourage you to also do this.
I have found this to be helpful: Writing things down in a journal – things like, when will XYZ happen? Or, I am in this position and I would like to be in that position, how can I get there, or am I ever going to get there?
When I look back a year or so later, and read those prior thoughts, I see that God has worked it out and indeed answered prayers of my heart I may have forgotten about.
Because I put them down on paper, I have reference and hindsight to see and remember what happened.
I see growth and answers to prayer.
Growth is hard to see when you feel like you’re not seeing progress, but if you write down your initial reference point, you look back later and you can definitely see it.
Writing in a journal also helps me sleep when I write my thoughts before bed and get them out of my head and onto paper.
It serves as a reminder to myself for the next day.
I don’t toss and turn all night, my brain not turning off and still trying to solve things. Thoughts get parked on paper, waiting for me to resume later.
It allows the brain to relax, and the subconscious can take over and think about it while I am able to rest, possibly forming a solution for the morning.
Those were a couple of bonus tips that went way off the trail of teaching your child Proverbs 31 principles. And working out.
What To Wear
Ephesians 6 teaches us to put our armor on so we are ready.
There has been a lot of teaching on this, so just to highlight:
Most of the items here are to defend oneself. Defensive weapons.
The sword of the Spirit can be both a defensive and offensive weapon.
From the Greek, it’s the spoken Word of God.
Another lesson hidden here is that we must teach our kids to memorize scripture, so that it’s hidden in our memory bank, and we can speak it at the needed time.
I show our kids to put on each piece of the armor individually, and not just announce, “ok, putting my armor on now.”
Romans also teaches us to put on the Lord:
But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts.Romans 13:14
Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.Ephesians 4:32
When The Teen was in 6th grade (top dawgs at the elementary level), there were some new people in the class.
New people in 6th grade? When most of the kids grew up together? How scary for them.
I told him he should introduce himself to them all and see if they needed any guidance on anything.
Be friendly. Welcoming. Help them figure out where they fit in.
He was afraid since 2 of them were girls. (Eeeek!)
Nonetheless, he did what I suggested, and he ended up even being friends with one of the new girls.
Fast-forward to Jr. High school.
He did not go to school with any of them for Jr High.
Fast-forward to high school.
Our first choice ended up being a bad fit for The Teen. He switched high schools after 9th grade to the district-assigned school for our house.
Guess who already went to his new school, had an established group of friends, and welcomed him into her group of friends?
Yep. Newbie-girl from 6th grade.
This has been the best school for him. He’s finally found his groove and actually enjoys school.
I’m not sure he would have felt so comfortable or even had people to really hang out with had he not befriended her in 6th grade.
Kindness goes a long way.
Be Example Believers
Let no one look down on your youthfulness, but rather in speech, conduct, love, faith and purity, show yourself an example of those who believe.1 Timothy 4:12
There are 5 things here that Paul states to Timothy that we should be examples in.
How do you think Christianity would present itself to the world if we actually taught these to our kids and practiced them?
I definitely see some things I need to work on so that I can properly teach my kids. But I know I have a good start.