Thirty five years ago, I had a toddler on my hip, a wall phone wedged…
between my shoulder and chin while making a peanut butter sandwich and talking to my mother about the latest incident with our infant. She laughed at this multi-tasking mama and told me I should write a book about my funny child rearing experiences. Writing a book was the furthest thing from my mind. I was knee deep in tinker toys. Little did I know that in 2011 I would be asked to write, “The Plan A Mom in a Plan B World: How to Raise Faithful Kids in a Flawed World.” Since then, it’s been my privilege to speak to moms all over the nation and to write for mom blogs. A few months ago, I decided to turn the microphone around and ask moms to share what they were doing to raise their children to know and follow Christ. Following are some of their tips. As Mother’s Day approaches, it’s a good time for us to think about the sacrifices our mothers made for us and if they’re alive, to thank them. What if we didn’t have a mama who loved and cared for us? As a wise friend recently shared, determine to be the kind of mother to our children that God wants us to be. The following moms are doing just that. I applaud them.
Read to them from a children’s Bible. Sing Scripture like Steve Green’s Hide ’em in your Heart. Act out Bible stories. As soon as a child starts to read, read with them from a real Bible.
Make your Christian faith a part of your daily vocabulary. Teach your children how to love well through every situation!
Let them catch you quietly praying and reading your Bible. When they come in the room, share what you’re learning.
Be an example of Christ to them and everyone you meet. Live a Christ-like life at home.
We take our daughter with us to church on Sunday and to Bible studies during the week. We talk with her about what she learned. We watch Superbook with our daughter. We teach her every good gift is from God and to share with others as He shares with us.
Teach them there’s always something to be thankful for! Never stop praying over them and for them. Share answered prayers.
Show mercy and love to people. Forgive your enemies. This is the best way to show them who we are in Christ.
Be transparent with your kids, fess up, and apologize when you make a mistake. If we proclaim Christ in our homes, but there is surface conversation and, “do as I say, not as I do,” it can become more about rule following than grace living.
Be as consistent in your walk as possible and love their daddy like crazy!
Be in the world, but not of the world. Watch the news and share how Biblical faith applies to what’s happening.
Have worship time together at night. Let the children choose their favorite worship songs.
Serve together as a family at a kid’s camp or Operation Christmas Child. Play Christian music in their rooms as they go to sleep. Make church a priority. Too many parents don’t stand firm during the critical teen years. Encourage your children to invite friends to church and happily go out of the way to pick up their friends for youth group.
Love them where they are. Be the hands and feet of Jesus.
Our children value what we value. Value what you want your children to value.
Make Scripture crafts and take them to a nursing home to give to the elderly.
When my daughter was in middle school, we did a Bible study every morning as we sat in the car line. It was only one page, but it had a verse and discussion question. It was a great way to start our day and connect as children enter their teens.
Your home reflects your priorities. Use crosses and Bible verses in your decor. Pray aloud together at meals no matter the location. Pray with them before they go to school. Pray aloud over them after you say their bedtime prayers. When they face decisions, have them pray about them, and ask what they think God is directing them to do.
Memorize Scripture together. Pray Scripture over them.
I prayer journal with my son. It’s nice when we look back and mark answered prayers!
Play Christian music in the kitchen and car. What goes into our kids’ ears makes its way into their hearts and comes out their mouths, hands, and feet.
Model the fruit of the Spirit.
I saturated my kids in the Story Bible which was also on tape. Sing to them. Give to the poor when they are with you.
Make memory verse placemats. Every time they eat, they see it.
Take advantage of teachable moments so they see how God fits naturally into their day.
My kids are older (12, 14, & 19). I have an ongoing list in my journal of the gifts God has woven into each child. When they’re feeling low, I ask if I can pray over them, and if they say yes, I pull out their list. One by one, I give thanks to God for each of their gifts. I thank God for choosing me to be their mom. As their identity forms in their teenage years, I want to give them as many reminders as possible of who they are and more importantly, Whose they are.
Yes, mothers across the nation are raising their children to know and follow Christ. A huge “thank you” to all you Christian moms on Mother’s Day and every day!
Wondering what to get a mother in your life for Mother’s Day? The Plan A Mom in a Plan B World is filled with encouragement and inspiration for moms of all ages and stages. Order it HERE on sale or AMAZON.
“Children are a gift from the Lord,” Psalm 127:3
Heavenly Father, thank You for all the moms who are raising their children to know and follow You. Be their guide, peace, and hope.